Recently we reported that the House GOP, especially Speaker Boehner, was looking at a means to advance the idea of “comprehensive” immigration reform.
President Obama threw down a gauntlet during his State of the Union address, (which very few watched, by the way). The House GOP is currently at a retreat conference in Baltimore (some might say their at a retreat both literally and figuratively) and they may well be crafting a strategy at this session.
Weekly Standard Editor Bill Kristol writes in his blog,
The Wall Street Journal reports that some House Republican leaders are looking to give illegal immigrants legal status right away, with the chance for a green card—and citizenship—down the line….First, illegal immigrants would be offered a “probationary” status, allowing them to work while the government tightened border security and interior enforcement. Officials have explained that this would allow people to work legally while they wait for permanent legal status. (Officials have explained that this group could revert to illegal status if enforcement benchmarks are not met.)
Mr. Kristol (and I) challenge that parenthetical statement. Kristol says,
Is it plausible, and would it even be fair, to force legalized working immigrants to “revert” to illegal status just because some bureaucrats haven’t met certain arbitrary benchmarks? The forced “reversion” would never happen, and it shouldn’t.
I’m constantly amazed how so much legislation is written in double-speak to appease and assuage some concerns while enabling the true goals to be met. “Comprehensive” legislation equals lots of pages of legislation with caveats buried deep inside and no one reads but everyone votes for.
Even Pat Buchanan warns about the prudence of this legislative shift in a National Review article where he says
An imminent Republican debate over immigration will play into the hands of the Democratic party. With the widespread unpopularity of Obamacare, Republicans should instead focus on the embattled health-care law ahead of the 2014 midterm election. By pivoting to the issue of immigration, Republicans are walking right into the trap.
Buchanan surmises that the “Chamber of Commerce and the big-business folks want the immigration deal solved.”
And therein lies the u-shaped ambush awaiting the House GOP and Speaker Boehner if they fall on this grenade. First of all, at a time when Americans are suffering from high levels of unemployment, they should not be adding illegals into the job market until we can rectify the situation for Americans.
The Democrats will certainly blame the Republicans for exacerbating the jobless situation for Americans and castigate the GOP as the party of big business and corporations who want cheap labor.
Second, why would Speaker Boehner do anything that feeds more members into the liberal progressive welfare nanny-state? Who does the Speaker believe these new legal-status individuals will support? Ya think we have voter fraud issues now?
Lastly, why would the GOP want to discourage its base, which enabled them to have a House majority in 2010?
This issue combined with the insidious government education initiative “common core” will result in many conservatives basically saying, “you’re on your own” and this will add fire to the direction and policy of the Republican Party.
My advice to Republicans? You cannot win by being a lesser version of the liberals. If you cannot articulate a clear delineation based upon a policy agenda that promotes the advancement of the individual American, you will lose.
Focus on healthcare solutions, policies that get Americans back to work, get behind our veterans and their concerns, and present a vision for our national security — and communicate that as a unified body.
Even Harry Reid wised up and is denying President Obama fast track trade authority and the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Make the connection with the American people, because right now, President Obama and the progressive socialists have lost credibility with Americans.
What do you think, should the House GOP cave in and advance some type of comprehensive resolution to illegal immigration? I think I know the answer…
EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on AllenBWest.com.