Yes, let’s round them all up and send them home…

Like that’ll work…

Immigration is about to hit the news again, big time. My theory is that the Dems, with backs up against the wall and about lose at least one chamber, will use the immigration issue to split the Republican party and bring out the Latino vote.

There is a good chance that this will work, given that many on the right want to do the full “Tancredo”, and go marching off the cliff. Interestingly, it might augment Republican wins in 2010, but destroy any chance of winning over Hispanics in the future.

This would make the immigration issue the cause for the “Californication” of the GOP for the entire nation. That didn’t work out very well, did it? Speaking of California, I have two stories for you that show the GOP the way to winning the immigration issue, and hence, win the future.

New poll shows ‘sea change’ in Californians’ attitudes toward illegal immigration

In a dramatic turnaround from 16 years ago, Californians now overwhelmingly favor giving illegal immigrants a “path to legalization” rather than punishing them by denying them a public education and social services, according to a poll unveiled Monday.

The survey of 1,515 registered voters showed that 67 percent of Californians support a two-pronged approach to solving the illegal immigration problem: implementing stronger enforcement at the border while setting up a legalization path for undocumented immigrants who admit they broke the law, perform community service, learn English and pay fines and back taxes.

Seventy percent favor stricter border controls and a temporary worker program that does not grant illegal immigrants citizenship and requires them to return to their homeland. But only 45 percent favor denying the undocumented an education and taxpayer-funded health and social services.

Of course, if you are a fan of this site, you’ve known this to be the answer all along. I wish I could say that 67% of Californians read this site, but it seems that the right ideas are getting out there.

Here is another story that should give Republicans a cause to celebrate.

Gomez holds both conservative and progressive views

Reporting from San Antonio and Los Angeles
When Archbishop Jose Gomez introduced himself to the faithful Tuesday morning, he described Los Angeles as “the global face of the Catholic Church.” He might as well have been talking about himself.

Gomez, 58, who will succeed Cardinal Roger Mahony, is a reflection of the future of American Catholicism. Born in northern Mexico, now an American citizen, he is one of the millions of Latinos who will make up the majority of Catholics in the United States within the next 10 years.

And like many of those Latinos, he is at once a conservative and a progressive: unyielding in his opposition to abortion and gay marriage, passionate in his advocacy for immigrants and the poor, confounding to those who try to wedge him into the traditional right-left political paradigm.

Let us assume for a moment that the Republican fails in its attempt to return to the good graces of the voters. If there was a good name to describe a new party to take its place, that name might be “The Progressive Conservative Party” or The Conservative Progressive Party.”

Bishop Gomez sounds like he would be at home in that party, as would the majority of most Americans who favor generally socially conservative policies and limited, but effective, government.

But hey, let’s round them all up and kick them out of the country. Glen Beck will save us.

Don’t tell Tom Tancredo…

…But people still like America.

700 Million Worldwide Desire to Migrate Permanently

United States Tops Desired Destination Countries

The United States is the top desired destination country for the 700 million adults who would like to relocate permanently to another country. Nearly one-quarter (24%) of these respondents, which translates to more than 165 million adults worldwide, name the United States as their desired future residence. With an additional estimated 45 million saying they would like to move to Canada, Northern America is one of the two most desired regions.

Aside from irreparably damaging the GOP…

This is Tom Tancredo’s OTHER legacy

Iowa: What Happens When a Town Implodes

During a bitter cold January week, penniless women and children stream into a Catholic church in the northeast Iowa town of Postville that has served as their refuge since May 12, when 389 workers were arrested during an immigration raid at the Agriprocessors Inc. meatpacking plant. The women are among 26 former Agriprocessors workers, most from Guatemala and Mexico, charged with immigration violations and fighting deportation. Released on humanitarian grounds but required to wear electronic ankle bracelets, the women, as well as about 59 children, now depend on the community, especially St. Bridget’s church, which operates a Hispanic ministry from a worn brick house.

One woman needs medical care for her anxious 12-year-old son, who has started wetting his bed. Another needs legal help for her husband, arrested during a return visit to Agriprocessors by immigration agents last fall. “I am very sad and worried,” says Irma Lopez, 28, a former Agriprocessors worker who remains in limbo with her young daughter while her husband is back in Guatemala, one of many arrested workers deported in October after serving five months in prison. “I worked since I was eight years old and now I feel worthless. I can work but I’m not allowed to.”

Eight months after the Agriprocessors raid, Postville is still grappling with what its leaders call “a humanitarian and economic disaster,” compounded by the recession and a harsh winter. Life isn’t much easier for “legal” workers. Inside a faded community hall serving as a relief center are Michael Barner, 47, and Patricia Williams, 41, who moved to Postville last month to work at Agriprocessors but had to leave their jobs soon after due to illness. They have arrived with an eviction notice and are seeking help to return to Dubuque. “We came here. We tried. I got sick. We just have to go back home,” says Barner.

Even after accounting for the aggressive pro-immigration bias and sob-story nature of this piece, the devastating stupidity of the GOP’s anti-immigration jaunt is apparent.

Furthermore, even if one concedes that the passage of unenforceable laws that no one wants enforced is hypocritical, it does not provide an excuse to execute stupid policy.

My personal opinion is that Bush’s immigration plan had too much immigration and not enough assimilation. That said, the GOP would be in much better shape at this very moment had the party listened to Bush instead of following Tom Tancredo off of the electoral cliff.

“An anti-Hispanic attitude is suicidal.”

That’s a quote from Karl Rove, who, though probably overrated, is still 100% right on that score.

Deal with it, angry white guys and gals. Find a way to make peace with some sort accommodation on immigration or consign Conservatism to the ash heap of history with your intransigence.

It’s your choice.

Full throttle on wrong track

The limited appeal of Immigration demagoguery and the lasting toll it is going to take on the GOP became clear early this year. Mitt Romney tried to win Iowa and New Hampshire as an anti-immigrant hard-liner. He was beaten by Mike Huckabee and McCain. Then Hastert’s seat was lost in the humiliating defeat of Illinois’ leading Immigration demagogue, ice cream magnate Jim Oberweis—in part because Latinos voted overwhelmingly against him.

There is a simple answer. Become the Assimilation Party, and paint the Democrats as the “Balkanization Party.” It will be effective because it is true.

How did being a “hard liner” work out for you?

More good news for Lou Dobbs…

More Immigration Losers

Virginia Republican Congressman Virgil Goode’s narrow loss to Democrat Tom Perriello became official last week, and it caps another bad showing for immigration restrictionists. For the second straight election, incumbent Republicans who attempted to turn illegal immigration into a wedge issue fared poorly.

Anti-immigration hardliners Randy Graf, John Hostettler and J.D. Hayworth were among the Republicans who lost in 2006. Joining them this year were GOP Representatives Thelma Drake (Virginia), Tom Feeney (Florida), Ric Keller (Florida) and Robin Hayes (North Carolina) — all Members of a House anti-immigration caucus that focuses on demonizing the undocumented.

According to a review of election results by America’s Voice, an advocacy group, Republican restrictionists had especially weak showings in “battleground” races. “Nineteen of 21 winners advocated immigration policies beyond enforcement-only,” says the report. “This includes 5 of 5 Senate races and 14 of 16 House races listed in the ‘toss-up,’ ‘leans Republican,’ or ‘leans Democratic’ categories of the Cook Political Report.”

Mr. Goode, a 12-year incumbent, had made a name for himself in Congress as a seal-the-border advocate. Among other things, he has called for mass deportations and amending the Constitution to deny U.S. citizenship to children of illegal aliens.

Gee, smaller and smaller groups of angrier and angrier people. That’s the ticket!

If Republicans want to reclaim that lost 14% (and more) without losing too much of the “angry white male” vote, one way to do it would be to become the “assimilationist” party – as opposed to the Democrat’s “Balkanizationalist” model.

The left wants the undocumented workers as another excuse for their “welfare state” programs, and the right wants the cheap labor. What do the American people want?

They want to know who is here, what they are doing, and how long they plan to stay. (do the polling, and I’ll bet you’ll find that is accurate). Crafting an immigration program that separates temporary workers from those who want citizenship is the first step. Tracking (or at least trying) them is another.

Regardless, by framing the issue as Balkanization v. Assimilation, the Republican Party will be more in line with existing citizens AND a good chunk of the recently assimilated. They need not win all the new citizens. 45-55% puts Republicans right back in the drivers seat.

St. Augustine’s advice to the GOP

This nugget of extreme wisdom comes from a Politico article written by Mark Sanford, governor of South Carolina.

“Unity in the essentials, diversity in the nonessentials, and charity in all things”

Of course, we could all quibble about what is, and what isn’t “essential.” Some angry white males probably think it is “essential” that the GOP work to kick every Hispanic out of the USA. Others think it is essential that we become an open, assimilationist party (as opposed to the Democrats “Balkanizationalist” model).

That said, Sanford’s, and Augustine’s advice is pretty good. I just don’t know if the party has the ability to heed it.

What’s next for the GOP?

We would be wise to start with the biblical notion of first taking the log out of your own eye before worrying about the splinter in someone else’s. In other words, Republicans would do well to first focus on how we were beaten in November not by Democrats, but in many cases by those in our own party.

Our party took nothing short of a shellacking nationally. Some on the left will say our electoral losses are a repudiation of our principles of lower taxes, smaller government and individual liberty. But Election Day was not a rejection of those principles — in fact, cutting taxes and spending were important tenets of Barack Obama’s campaign.

Instead, voters rejected the fact that while Republicans have campaigned on the conservative themes of lower taxes, less government and more freedom, they have consistently failed to govern that way. Americans didn’t turn away from conservatism, they instead turned away from many who faked it.

How to make an Angry White Male’s head explode

I’m already on record as arguing that the GOP (what’s left of it) can not become an “anti-immigrant” party. To that end, I’ve decided that I’m not going to argue with my friends on the right about immigration (legal or illegal), other that to point to polls, trends, demographics, and then (as gently as possible) tell them that they have no choice but to win at least a plurality to the Republican Party.

All arguing will accomplish is to delay the inevitable. The GOP will either follow the angry white male, and become a regional party that eventually dies, or it will become an open and welcoming party, persuading immigrants of all stripes that their natural home is in the culturally conservative and economically viable Republican Party. (look at Prop 8 results if you think we can’t win these folks over)

To that end, I commend to you the article below.

How to get Hispanics into the GOP

Republicans are finally worried that their failure to attract Hispanic voters in this year’s election spells trouble – perhaps for decades. But they’re not sure what to do about it. Moderates in the party are pushing for more efforts at “inclusion,” which usually means elevating a few Hispanics to symbolic but visible positions in national, state and local politics. But with no Cabinet positions to hand out and so few prominent Hispanic-elected officials to promote within their ranks, Republicans clearly won’t gain much leverage with this strategy.

Some conservative Republicans, on the other hand, are either in denial or think they can control the problem by limiting the growth in the Hispanic immigrant population. (Just ask the 14 out of 16 hard-line, anti-immigration Republicans who lost their seats this time around to pro-comprehensive reform Democrats how well this worked at the polls.)

Still other Republicans hope that the party’s message of self-reliance, low taxes, defense of life and support for traditional marriage will win over entrepreneurial and religious Hispanics. But while I think these positions have tremendous appeal and are the bedrock on which to build support in the Hispanic community, they’re not enough.

Republicans who fail to see the future aren’t going to be part of it.

Here’s a radical suggestion – but one that wouldn’t compromise Republican or conservative principles. Why doesn’t the Republican Party launch an aggressive Welcome to America Campaign? The idea would be to set up a network of volunteers to reach out to Hispanic immigrants, and especially their American-born children, to teach English, American history and civics. Estimates are that four in 10 Hispanic voters in this year’s election were naturalized citizens – and 75 percent of them cast their votes for President-elect Barack Obama.

But what if those new Americans had been helped to become U.S. citizens by local volunteers from the Federation of Republican Women, the Republican Men’s Club or the local Republican central committee? What if Republican volunteers approached employers in their area and offered to set up English classes during lunch breaks or after work for immigrant workers, or distributed DVDs and videos with language and civics instruction? This type of volunteerism has been ceded to Democrat-leaning groups over the years. Is it any wonder that when these new citizens register to vote, their instinct is to support the party that they’ve come to know firsthand?

Why would any group of people vote for a party that didn’t court them? Bush got 44% of the Hispanic vote, McCain got 30%. Do the math. Smell the coffee. Light a candle and stop cursing the darkness!