Fifteen Painful Years on the Wrong Course
In August 2001, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) published a report by Karen Kaufmann and James G. Gimpel, entitled “Republican Efforts to Attract Latino Voters: Impossible Dream or Distant Reality?” This study found that Hispanic voters in U.S. elections favored the Democrat Party by more than two-to-one because of long-standing traditional loyalties and strong Hispanic preferences for generous big government welfare and healthcare policies. Moreover, it showed little change in this Democrat Party preference with time in the U.S. or over generations. Nor did economic success substantially change the preference of higher income Hispanic households for the Democrat Party. This should have been sobering news for the G.W. Bush Administration, which continued to formulate its immigration policies based on anecdotal myths rather than statistical reality. The Bush policy of expanded legal immigration and negligible internal and workplace enforcement against illegal immigrants earned no Hispanic respect, resulted in a doubling of illegal immigration, hurt American workers and taxpayers, and accelerated the growth of a strong Democrat voting bloc that threatens eventual Democrat dominance in national elections. Pew Research found in 2013 that 69 percent of Hispanics favored Obamacare, and 71 percent voted for Obama.
The CIS report repeated the assertion of previous studies: U.S. Immigration Policy is steadily increasing the power and influence of the Democrat Party and undermining the electoral future of the Republican Party.
A 2013 CIS research paper, “Pro-Immigration Congressional Republicans Do Not Perform Better Among Latino Voters,” by Dr. George Hawley of the University of Houston, was also published in the academic journal, Social Science Quarterly. Hawley used the 2006 Congressional elections to study the relationship of voting records, based on NumbersUSA grading of incumbent House Republicans with the percent of the Latino vote they received in the 2006 General Election.
Contrary to expectations, this study found that a conservative immigration voting record did not hurt Republican incumbents with Hispanics. More importantly, those with liberal immigration voting records were not helped one whit. Although many Hispanics describe themselves as independents, overwhelming loyalty to the Democrat Party is an enduring cultural fact.
On the other hand, the study indicated that Republican support for amnesty and other liberal immigration policies hurt them with non-Hispanic whites at a level that is not only statistically significant but potentially disastrous. Institutional Republican leadership support for amnesty and other liberal immigration policies risks massive Republican defections and long-term alienation of the Party’s conservative base. We began to see this Republican revolt with the Tea Party movement in 2006, and now we are seeing massive grassroots Republican revolt beginning with Donald Trump’s smashing the political correctness barriers erected by both the Republican and Democrat establishments. But while this massive challenge to the establishment is dominated by Trump supporters, it is shared by Ted Cruz supporters. Thus this enormous tidal wave of justly outraged voters is vulnerable to dissipation by establishment orchestrated division or bribery.
The Hawley study invites some easy conclusions. Amnesty and other liberal immigration policies would flood the U.S. with millions of predominantly Democrat voters. Republicans would gain no benefit or respect for this. The Republicans would, however, suffer substantial abandonment by conservatives. The combined result would probably destroy any future potential for GOP Congressional majorities, a conservative Supreme Court majority, or electing a President.
The immigration issue is not just about illegal immigration and amnesty. It is also about excessive legal immigration, which at 1.0 million permanent (green card) residents per year, is nearly four times the 285,000 annual average during the economic boom years of the 1950’s and 1960’s. Our current legal immigration level is dramatically inconsistent with the reality of 18.0 million Americans who want a full time job and cannot find one.
Both illegal immigration and legal immigration are totally out of control. In 1970, the foreign born population of the United States was 9.6 million. That has increased more than four-fold to 42.1 million today. In the last decade, immigration to the U.S. has been shifting from Latin America to Asia and the Middle East. Muslim immigrants now number over 100,000 per year. In both 2008 and 2012, Obama won 80 percent of all minority group voters, which included most recent immigrants. None of this bodes well for retaining our cultural traditions, Constitutional government, or the survival of any conservative issues, social or economic.
The demographic changes due to our foolish immigration policies have now accumulated to the point that electing a Center-Right Republican President and Congressional majority will soon become impossible unless immigration can be controlled and significantly reduced in the near future. We have little time left before we are over the demographic cliff with no hope of reversal. Another amnesty or legal or illegal immigration surge will destroy the American Republic and bury the conservative values that made it great. We are in a crisis with only one election left to save our country.
Following Obama’s defeat of Romney in November 2012, the Republican National Committee (RNC) commissioned a committee report (or autopsy) on Romney’s 2012 election defeat. It was headed by RNC Chairman Reince Priebus and written by pro-amnesty campaign consultant Henry Barbour, famous now for his 2014 dirty trick campaign defending GOP establishment Senator Thad Cochran in Mississippi. Henry Barbour is the nephew of pro-amnesty former RNC Chairman Haley Barbour.
The committee of course, recommended immediate passage of “comprehensive immigration reform,” including amnesty and more legal immigration, all of which strongly contradicted the 2012 Republican Platform. They recommended a strong minority outreach and spent $10 million on it. Like the usual RINO approach to minority outreach, it was a vigorous accommodation to liberal ideology rather than selling the benefits of economic freedom and genuine opportunity. They opened a dialogue with La Raza and the NAACP that betrayed sensible conservatism. They warned that the GOP needed to move to the left on LGBT issues, although they did not specifically endorse same-sex marriage. In some double talk they labeled “Epistemic Closure,” they pitched the idea of cultural accommodation and abandoning traditional Constitutional and social conservatism. They praised Republican governors like John Kasich for moving to the left, just as Kasich has been doing in the 2016 Presidential Primaries. Finally, they bemoaned the Republican Party’s identification with the rich. But their recommendation to expand big donor PAC opportunities and influence belied any sympathy for most Americans. They mentioned nothing of the near half trillion dollars per year that cheap foreign labor shifts from American workers to cheap-labor users supported by special interest donors. The typical RINO thread that social issues ought to be abandoned by the GOP was there. The 2013 RNC “autopsy” report, the GOP establishment agenda, and the agenda of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce are essentially one. The U.S. Chamber is the largest contributor to political campaigns and PACs.
Here is the road to Republican and national survival: Implementing restrictionist immigration policies that favor ordinary American wage-earners and taxpayers rather than special interest donors is urgent. Trade agreements and Trade policies must meet the same “good for all Americans” test. The GOP must open its eyes to the colossal dangers to national security and public safety posed by the Islamic doctrine of Migration Jihad. It must cast aside its own foolish kowtowing to political correctness and multiculturalism. It must vigorously defend our Constitutional rights and our traditional social, cultural, and spiritual values against external enemies and internal corruption and radicalism. The Republican Party is going to be roadkill unless it starts listening to its grassroots base.
Leonard M. (Mike) Scruggs is the author of The Un-CivilWar: Shattering the Historical Myths, UniversalMedia, Asheville, 2011.