“Comprehensive” Campaigning in El Paso

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Little changed later in the speech when the president outlined his specifics for reform. Moving from border security and holding businesses accountable if they hired illegals, he noted that “those who are here illegally have a responsibility as well..to admit that they broke the law, pay their taxes, pay a fine, and learn English.  And they have to undergo background checks and a lengthy process before they can get in line for legalization.” That last bit begs an obvious question: where will illegals be getting in line? Can they remain in America, or will they be required to re-enter the country legally?

The president also re-iterated his support for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors, aka the DREAM ACT, which would legalize those who arrived in the country as minors, provided they got a college degree or completed two years of military service within a specific time frame. And once again, he fudged the facts on its most recent rejection, claiming that “even though it received a majority of votes in the Senate, it was blocked when several Republicans who had previously supported the DREAM Act voted no.”

Reality check number two: Democrats controlled both houses of Congress prior to the 2010 election. The DREAM Act passed in the House, but it died in the Senate when Democrats could only muster 55 of the 60 votes required to end a filibuster. And while a majority of Republicans did in fact vote against it, five Democrats also voted no: Max Baucus and John Tester of Montana, Kay Hagan of North Carolina, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, and Mark Pryor of Arkansas. If those Democrats had voted yes, the DREAM Act would have passed.

The president did offer one fix with which most Americans would likely agree: “reforming our outdated system of legal immigration.” Yet even here the president remained potentially contentious. Saying that “while applicants wait for approval, for example, they’re often forbidden from visiting the United States… husbands and wives may have to spend years apart.  Parents can’t see their children. I don’t believe the United States of America should be in the business of separating families.”

Perhaps not, but this is a president who plays fast and loose with the facts, and one of the ideas many American resent with respect to comprehensive immigration reform is the concept known as “chain migration,” which refers most commonly to the extended families of newly legalized immigrants being allow to come to the United States to “reunite” with their relatives. As the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) noted, “Illegal aliens given amnesty by Congress in 1986 are now fueling naturalization in record numbers. As these former illegal aliens become citizens, all of their immediate relatives qualify to come immediately to the United States, and start new migration chains of their own.” Again, that was when 2.7 million illegals were granted amnesty, not potentially 11 million–assuming that number is accurate.

As of now, accurate or not, it is irrelevant. Despite the president’s speech yesterday, comprehensive immigration reform is currently a non-starter in Congress — and Mr. Obama knows it. Despite telling the audience that “there is a movement for reform that’s gathering strength from coast to coast,” the president knows full well that if he couldn’t get comprehensive immigration reform passed when Democrats had substantial majorities in both houses of Congress, there’s no chance of getting it done now. He also knows that a substantial portion of the mainstream media will not bother to fact-check this speech. Thus, the president can get away with the narrative of demonizing Republicans in order to re-energize the Hispanic vote he believes will ensure his 2012 re-election as a result.

Yet such re-energizing is not a done deal. An April Gallup Poll revealed that his support among Hispanics has been eroding. Even more importantly, Mr. Obama might want to consider how comprehensive immigration reform plays with respect to another constituency crucial to his re-election: a Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey taken in March reveals that “69% of voters not affiliated with either major party,” aka the Independent voters who put the president over the top in 2008, believe, similar to the results in the Gallup poll mentioned earlier, that “gaining control of the border is more important” than “legalizing the status of undocumented workers already living here.”

Perhaps the president won the battle with respect to the Hispanic vote in El Paso today. Whether he’ll win the war in November of 2012 when Independent voters makes their preferences known remains to be seen. One last thing. It should be noted that, as a result of Osama bin Laden’s death, last week was arguably the best one for the president since his election in 2008. Yet for some reason, Mr. Obama couldn’t give the American public a consistent story about what happened. As with this speech, one has to wonder whether such inconsistency is by accident, design–or a habit of dissembling this president finds impossible to break.

Arnold Ahlert is a contributor to the conservative website JewishWorldReview.com.


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  • geez

    Obama refuses to enforce the laws of the land as promised. We must put him on the book tour with Carter the Magnificent in 2012. America can't afford Obama's leadership anymore. Wouldn't it be great to have a man in the White House!?!

    • Jim_C

      Uh, huh, sure. And do you think this "man" would dare stand up to the Chamber of Commerce and the business community that depends on illegal labor? If so, I have a bridge for sale.

  • davarino

    Now I think he has told the lie so much that he actually believes his own BS. It will be nice to get rid of this pretender and have a true believer in office. When he leaves in 2012, what will be his legacy? I am suprised he didnt have his picture Photoshoped into the picture showing him shooting Osama. That would be to obvious, but he was in the helicopter manning the machine gun. But he did have the machine gun ground into little pieces after the raid because he hates guns, except for photo ops.

    Anyway, I want to undo this illegal immigration business just so I can go to a McDonalds and order something without having to point at pictures and give hand signals only to get home and have nothing that I ordered. Is that so wrong? Oh and there is the whole jihadist movement sneaking into the country as well but they dont work at McDonalds so at least I could get a hamburger while I am being blown to bits.

  • Steve Chavez

    HISPANICS, those who have been in the U.S. for generations like here in New Mexico, especially Northern NM like Santa Fe, Espanola, Truchas, Chimayo, Las Vegas, Pecos, Chama, and Manuelitas, have voted in every Democrat in every race except for this past November when they helped the Repubicans vote in New Mexico's first female and first Hispanic Governor, Susana Martinez. Martinez was the DA in Las Cruces in Southern NM and grew up in El Paso. She was extremely tough on illegals and her main campaign was based on following the laws that are now on the books! She fought hard in the Democrat-controlled Legislature to overturn the policy by Bill Richardson, half-Mexican (Not New Mexican but Mexico Mexican) to give Driver's Licences to ILLEGALS! She lost by a close vote with some Democrats joining her which was a miracle here in the Democrat Mafia controlled state! The next election should end that stranglehold on the State!

    New Mexican Hispanics, not Mexicans/Puerto Ricans/Latin Americans, DO NOT SUPPORT ILLEGALS! Letters to the Editor, radio call in shows, protests, gatherings, and after a Catholic mass, DO NOT WANT ILLEGALS! Many of the older generations that I know, who are hardcore Democrats, surprisingly get angry about this issue and want ILLEGALS ARRESTED AND DEPORTED!

    So, when Obama is out campaigning on this issue, most of the supporters are illegals, their children, or the Dream Act illegals! There was a high school protest at a Santa Fe high school and New Mexican Hispanics were telling their ILLEGAL fellow students "to go home!" They are angry because the ILLEGALS are slowing down education since they don't fully understand English! ILLEGALS CAN'T VOTE YET HERE IN NM BUT THE DEAD STILL CAN!

  • Steve Chavez

    The News you won't hear about! FIVE MEXICAN ILLEGALS arrested just last week in Santa Fe in major HEROIN RING! Two MEXICAN illegals arrested in Espanola two months ago dealing heroin. Heroin was being sold inside the Santa Fe New Mexican newspaper by street corner vendors and reported by the New Mexican which supports ILLEGALS like today's editorial whose writer has a writing style exactly like the "thrill up my leg" MSNBC hosts! (santafenewmexican.com)

    MEXICAN HEROIN has addicted many our own High School students in Northern New Mexico!

    An ILLEGAL Guatemalan man was invited to live in the home of some fellow Guatemalans here in Santa Fe. He continually RAPED their seven year old daughter! He fled, they say back to Guatemala, but I wrote that if he returned to his own village, he would surely receive justice the old fashioned way!

    An ILLEGAL MEXICAN was arrested in Santa Fe for outstanding warrants and he had two jobs: Lowe's and K-Mart! So he was doing jobs Americans WILL do! He gave the employers false ID and used his Bill Richardson Driver's License too!!!!!!!

  • OLJingoist

    He is really putting the screws to himself.
    He is not campaigning to mainstream Americans He's campaigning to all of America's malcontents. He will rabble rouse along with the LSM to create a world of smoke and mirrors amongst them. They will storm around the country demanding and demanding but the people who pay the bills are not listening.
    This poser has committed enough crimes against the American citizen now. He needs to start to answer for these crimes.
    PS If after sieu's displaying the commie flag while wearing their purple on May 1st is an insult wait until the poser wears his purple jacket the next time he campaigns before them. And tells them again he is one of them.

  • tanstaafl

    I think that the President feels that "undocumented immigrants" are actually "potential Democratic voters". How dare they deny Our Dear Leader more unquestioning followers?!

  • John

    The president and most of us have a complete disconnect on the phrase "immigration reform." For me it means plugging up the borders and stopping illegal immigration, stopping crime, drugs and anchor babies of which is helping to destroy the American welfare system and wrecking havoc on our economy, filling our cities with people who REFUSE to learn the language, are angry by flying Mexican flags from the school flag poles, having very dangerous gangs, etc. Not encouraging.

    For him, reform means opening up the borders and allowing any and everyone to cross and take from the American citizens because he'll get votes for it. Because it isn't "faiirrrrr" that they don't live like us. Total, absolute and complete disconnect. And then there's the far left that supports his agenda of immigration.

    We have an uphill battle, but getting the right person in Congress and the White House is key.

  • Soylent Green

    Even in this column repeats the liberal mantra that we all agree that immigration reform is necessary. We do? It is? Will someone ever explain what exactly is WRONG with our immigration policy other than the obvious fact that we don't enforce the laws we already have?

  • Steve Chavez

    MODERN DAY SLAVERY: Africans were brought here in chains to "do the work Americans wouldn't do! Yes, Mexicans, and others, willingly come here but once here they live in squalid conditions, no work clothes, poor health, no recourse against their bosses, poor and dangerous conditions, little food or water breaks, heat and cold, and are threatened with the most despicable comment of all if they don't work like a "slave": "If you don't like it, go back to Mexico" or "I'll call La Migra!" SICKENING AND DEGRADING!

    Who is more likely to hire illegals to turn them into "SLAVES" and who did not give them their deserved "fair pay and fair treatment?" Democrats who support them coming here illegally or Republicans who do not support them in any way? Why would I, a person who has written about "Modern Day Slavery" then hire one?

    I do believe that they are treated like SLAVES and that, along with being here illegally, is one reason I am totally against them!

    I am also insulted that I, and others, are called "racists" if we dare question this policy!

    I am also insulted by Barack Obama telling Americans and Mexicans that Republicans want to put a moat filled with alligators as if we want those illegals to be eaten alive!


  • Amused

    To solve the problem , and to pre-empt ANY attempt at amnersty for those who violated the law and are here illegally , all need be done is for Republicans [since they claim to have the high ground on this issue ] ENACT A LAW WHICH WILL LEVY A $50,000. fine on ANY employer PER ILLEGAL employee found in their employ also fined for any subcontractor found to have illegal immigrants in their employ .This will remove the emotion , the demagoguery , ideology and politics from the issue . WHO has the cohnes to make that LAW ??? Wanna work here , you come in the FRONT DOOR WITH YOUR CREDENTIALS .

    • Jim_C

      PRECISELY. It needn't be $50,000, more like $20,000, which is the approximate cost to the US taxpayer of processing/deporting said alien.

      But nah, I'd rather make mouth noise about "sealing the borders" blah blah blah blah

  • Amused

    Unfortunately , I dont think any , Dem or Rep have the guts to do what is necessarry . Man we wouldn't even have top pay the projected 10 billion or so to transport the illegals back to their points of origin . Then and only then will we be ready to control the borders .

  • Jim

    Neither the Republicans nor the Democrats have any intention of closing the border. The Republican's financiers the US Chamber of Commerce and NAM etc fight along side the ACLU and La Raza (Which the Chamber Finances) to keep the borders completely open and illegal immigration as high as possible.
    The Chamber,the ACLU and Holder have entered against Arizona and Utah in those states attempt to protect their citizen. The Pro Illegal Immigration Organizations are trying to wear down the states with abuse of due process tactics.
    They do not care what happens to the Americans.
    The only thing the voter can do is vote out each and every congressman who wavers on the issue or tries to divert the conversation to any consideration but sealing the border by means of a wall just as Israel has a wall..
    No excuses what so ever. Else get used to program.
    How did McCain make it through?