Will 2014 Be the Year of Amnesty?

Arnold Ahlert is a former NY Post op-ed columnist currently contributing to JewishWorldReview.com, HumanEvents.com and CanadaFreePress.com. He may be reached at atahlert@comcast.net.


illegal-immigrationHouse Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) seems determined to undo the political advantage the GOP has gained from the disastrous implementation of ObamaCare. According to the New York Times, Boehner “has signaled he may embrace a series of limited changes to the nation’s immigration laws in the coming months,” bringing up a series of bills to advance that agenda. Apparently Boehner is holding firm to the belief that the need for some kind of “reform” outweighs the risks of alienating his core constituency.

According to the Boehner’s aides, the Speaker is considering a “step by step” process, though they did not identify these steps in specificity. The Times, no doubt in an effort to be “helpful,” suggested that such an agenda might include fast-tracking legalization for agricultural workers, increasing the number of visas for high-tech workers, or embracing citizenship for young illegals whose parents brought them across the border.

Unsurprisingly, gaining control of the border failed to make the list.

Immigration activists were ostensibly buoyed by two recent indications that Boehner is becoming more attuned to their concerns. First, in an effort to push what he called a “common sense” overhaul of the system, Boehner hired Rebecca Tallent. Tallent is a former staffer for Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and former House member James Kolbe, a Republican who represented Arizona’s 8th congressional district. Tallent is a pro-amnesty advocate who has been involved in the creation of broad legalization bills for McCain and Kolbe over the last decade. “Tallent’s hiring suggests [Boehner] really does still want to push an amnesty through the House, which to me suggests that the immigration hawks still have their work cut out for them,” said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies. “She is a professional amnesty advocate.”

Boehner’s aides claim she was brought in to represent his views and not her own. Reform advocates paint a far more realistic picture of the hire, contending that there was no reason to hire Tallent unless Boehner was prepared to address the issue.

Boehner’s aides noted that he remains opposed to the so-called “Gang of Eight”-sponsored Senate bill that sailed through that chamber on a bipartisan vote of 68-32 last June. “The American people are skeptical of big, comprehensive bills, and frankly, they should be,” Mr. Boehner told reporters last month. “The only way to make sure immigration reform works this time is to address these complicated issues one step at a time. I think doing so will give the American people confidence that we’re dealing with these issues in a thoughtful way and a deliberative way.”

However, the coordinated pressure of immigration activists and their allies casts doubt on the possibility of addressing immigration issues in a thoughtful or deliberative way. Activists who participated in acts of civil disobedience late last year to further their agenda are planning new demonstrations for Washington, D.C. and other cities in 2014. Business groups, including tech companies from Silicon Valley and the Chamber of Commerce will be initiating new lobbying campaigns. Faith, immigrant rights, and labor organizations who launched the Fast For Familes campaign late last year have promised to ramp up the pressure as well.

The strategy behind the push is to get the legislative ball rolling in the House sometime in May or June, after Republicans running in 2014 have finished their primary campaigns. After that, the hope is that some sort of bill will reach President Obama’s desk before the 2014 election campaign gets in full gear. “That’s our first window,” said Jim Wallis, the president of Sojourners, a Christian social justice organization in favor of Amnesty. “We are organizing, mobilizing, getting ready here. I do really think that we have a real chance at this in the first half of the year.”

If that strategy fails, activists envision another effort during the lame-duck session of Congress following the election. That would represent their last chance for using parts of the Senate bill as the basis for any compromise, because it expires at the end of this year. Thus, much like 2013, they are emphasizing the urgency of getting something done, sooner rather than later.

In the Times‘ telling of things, some sort of immigration reform is necessary to make the Republican Party palatable for Hispanics, who are “crucial to the party’s fortunes in the 2016 presidential election.” Leaving aside for the moment the absurd notion that anyone on the left, much less the New York Times, has any interest in helping the GOP enhance its fortunes, reality also reveals otherwise. In every presidential election going back to 1980, Hispanics have overwhelmingly favored the Democratic Party by an average margin of 64-31 percent.

That includes the 1988 election when George G.W. Bush beat Democrat contender Michael Dukakis in a 41 state vs. 9 state blow out. Duakais garnered 69 percent of the Hispanic vote to Bush’s 30 percent in the first presidential election following the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act that granted outright amnesty to 2.7 million illegal aliens. Because the two other critical provisions of that bill, namely a crackdown on businesses that hire illegals and enhancing border security, were virtually ignored, America now faces the prospect of more than four times that number of illegals — assuming the much-touted, but unverifiable number of 11 million is accurate – demanding amnesty.

The idea that Hispanics will eventually embrace conservative values is equally absurd. A 2012 survey conducted by the Pew Hispanic Center reveals that while only a 41 percent minority of Americans in general favor bigger government and more social services, a full 75 percent of Hispanics embrace that fundamental pillar of the American left. And while that percentage decreases among Hispanics who have been here longer, it still remains at 58 percent for those who have been here for three generations or more. Assuming current trends continue, Republicans might squeak out a bare majority of the Hispanic vote in time for the presidential election of 2036.

Immigration reform advocates, who endured their last defeat on the issue in 2006, insist the public embraces a different attitude on the subject eight years later. Again, a Pew poll reveals that Americans remain largely wedded to the ideas contained in the 1986 bill, with 85 percent believing employers should have to verify the legality of all new hires, and 68 percent favoring increased security measures and enforcement at U.S. borders. And while 72 percent of Americans support allowing illegals to remain in the country, they do so only after certain requirements, such as paying back taxes, learning English, and passing background checks, are met first. Furthermore, despite that approval, more than half of those polled remain opposed granting citizenship to illegals.

A Gallup poll taken after the 2012 election confirms that opposition. Only 37 percent of Americans favor a pathway to citizenship, and 62 percent want illegal immigration halted completely. Yet the party breakdown of the numbers is far more significant. Forty-nine percent of Democrats favor a pathway to citizenship, compared to only 25 percent of Republicans. Eight-two percent of Republicans want to prioritize stopping the flow of illegals, versus only 48 percent of Democrats.

In other words, unless the first thing out of the legislative box has something to do with stopping the flow of illegals and eschewing anything regarding a pathway to citizenship, Republicans are virtually certain to alienate a substantial portion of their core constituency if they go along with the Left on immigration.

An unnamed top Republican aide contends that won’t happen. “They won’t try to push through something that conservatives can’t live with,” the aide told the Times. Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH), a member of the Judiciary Committee, reflected the essence of conservative opposition. He characterized a pathway to citizenship as “unfair to the millions of people who are trying to come to this country and follow the rules as they are,” further insisting that Republicans shouldn’t get “stampeded into something that’s not good for the country.” Chabot supports Hispanic outreach. “But I don’t think the immigration bill itself is something that’s going to accomplish that,” he contends.

Roy Beck, CEO and founder of NumbersUSA was blunt regarding the GOP’s motivation for reform, insisting Boehner is beholden to large campaign donors. “He wants it, Number 1, to give the tech contributors what they want on tech visas and, Number 2, to give the ag lobbyists what they want on farmworker visas,” Beck said. “He also is heavily influenced by the Republican National Committee consultants who just want to get the issue off the table.”

Yet the issue is only on the table if Boehner puts it there. Republicans have a party retreat scheduled later this month and immigration reform will undoubtedly come up. They might want to consider two realities as part of the discussion. First, it takes a remarkable level of political tone-deafness to begin dealing with an issue that is not only inimical to the interests of their base, but one that is contentious enough to take the focus off the debacle of ObamaCare wholly owned by Democrats. A party with visions of holding the House and taking the Senate might be wise to remember that one of the primary reasons Mitt Romney lost the 2012 presidential election was because a huge portion of the electorate stayed home, due in large part to their belief that there isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between the two political parties. Republicans embracing anything other than a hard stance on reform would exacerbate that reality. If they do, it isn’t hard to envision a low-turnout election that maintains the current status quo.

Second, as long as an Obama administration with a track record of selective and capricious law enforcement capabilities remains in power, who’s to say what part of any new law won’t receive the same treatment? As Breitbart News revealed last October, Shawn Moran, Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council, insisted that Border Patrol agents were being ordered to stand down and allow illegal aliens, human traffickers and drug cartel members, to cross the border. Budget cuts were the ostensible reason for the order, but Moran noted the Border Patrol “has a larger budget than ever,” but it has “not trickled down to the men and women with their boots on the ground.” Obama also unilaterally authorized his own version of the DREAM Act a year earlier.

If that’s still not enough for the GOP, they should consider one more reality. A Gallup poll released last May asked Americans what the most pressing priorities of the nation are. Of the twelve separate categories, reforming immigration finished dead last. Creating jobs and growing the economy finished one and two. In light of a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) report released last June, predicting the Senate immigration bill would drive down wages and make it harder for Americans to find jobs — not to mention a Heritage Foundation report asserting reform would cost taxpayers $6.3 trillion in new spending on entitlements and social programs over a 50 year period –Republicans might want to reorder their own priorities. A viable opposition party is a terrible thing to waste.

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  • A Z

    The people against amnesty fall into 2 camps.

    Those against it period and those against it because they already fooled us once when it came to building a border fence.

    The latter cannot convince the former that a deal is worth making and rightfully so.

    They floated amnesty starting in 2006/2007 with George Bush and John McCain. If they were serious we would have a border fence by now. But in the intervening 6 years not much has been done.

    Instead they have LIED to us. in 2009 when the U.S> went into recession and fewer people were illegally entering the U.S. they took credit a short while later for good border enforcement, when it was due to poor economy.

    • bluffcreek1967

      The worst thing about illegal immigration is not merely that the Mexican invaders (among others) break our laws, but that they threaten the founding stock of our nation (which is white). They threaten our culture, our way of life, and our european heritage and distinct customs.

      The Mexicans have made it clear that they have no intention of assimilating into our nation’s fabric other than to turn our once great nation into Mexico. Mexicans, by and large, do not improve communities, they devalue them and turn them into their own versions of Tijuana. Don’t believe me? Look at East L.A., most cities in L.A. County, and almost all of Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

      This alone, if for no other reason, ought to rally every true American to oppose any form of ‘comprehensive immigration reform’ (which is none other than amnesty). There’s no other way around it: The illegal Mexican invaders need to be deported in mass!

      But disingenuous white liberals, including a host of ‘compassionate conservatives,’ will have nothing to do with such a possibility. So long as whites ignore the issues of race and culture, we will continue to see California and our entire country go down the toilet.

      Once the Mexicans fully take over states such as CA, AZ, and TX, don’t think for one minute that they will be as generous and accommodating as naive whites have been toward them. It will payback time against the ‘gringo’!

      http://www.ambrosekane.com

  • A Z

    Amnesty without a complete fence means Boehner gets primaried.

    If he becomes a lobbyist in K street, we blog about him everyday so he becomes radioactive and no one will hire him as a lobbyist

    Scorch the Earth!

    • nacho475

      Boehner needs to get primaries no matter what. He is a useless, spineless, sniveling cry baby that projects nothing but weakness. He gets swindled by the Dems constantly.

      • A Z

        “Boehner needs to get primaries no matter what”

        Yes!

  • physicsnut

    The creeps need to be HOUNDED OUT OF OFFICE, RIGHT NOW.

  • Realist

    It should be obvious by now for anyone paying even the slightest attention that Boehner and the bulk of RINOs serve the interests and wishes of their handlers and paymasters, paymasters who demand that illegals of all stripes be granted privileges and benefits above and beyond those accorded to citizens. The illegals are just the latest agents of chaos and mayhem the new nobility see as their best route to a permanent and unchanging “right” to power and privilege. The existing citizen serfs will simply have to learn to accept having their countries (all western pseudo-democracies) fall under the complete control of that new nobility, so all western democracies are being flooded with i miscible and incompatible groups that insure the resulting squabbling and chaos will require “saviors” to sort out those squabbles, and those “saviors” will actually serve the interests of the new nobility. Just wait until those same “saviors” create the economic plans that confiscate the savings of the middle classes and give some significant portion of it to the new, heavily dependent groups imported by those same saviors.

    Wake up.

  • David Farrar

    Congratulations! Finally somebody has accurately articulated the overwhelming view of grass-root Americans.

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is being ‘primaried’ for his House seat by Eric Gurr*, an Ohio businessman.

    No amnesty.
    No deficit spending.
    No ObamaCare

    ex animo
    davidfarrar
    *http://www.gurrforcongress.com/

  • USARetired

    Boehner is another idiot that should join the ranks of the unemployed. He is to stupid to occupy any position of authority or responsibility ! Amnesty will only contribute to this nations bankruptcy and increase to rolls of the unemployed!
    He has become worthless as t!ts on a Boar Hog!!

  • Gerald Michael

    Boehner says, “I think doing so will give the American people confidence that we’re dealing with these issues in a thoughtful way and a deliberative way.” WRONG: Enforcing existing laws would have accomplished this a long time ago. Doing it “piecemeal” is what the liberal state states are doing now. California is the future for the other 49 states. I guarantee another amnesty will cause a third of Republicans to quit voting forever. Even if they did keep voting, it wouldn’t matter with all of the newly amnestied coming on the voting rolls. And we know that. So why bother when our own party works against us? Am I the only one who realizes we are pretty much finished as a nation?

    • reired

      Gerald,we are not finished,we are entering a new & very ugly period in our nations history.After we go through this ugly periods the lights will once more go on in America,but we will have a lot of pain before that happens.
      As for Boehner,I don’t think the low-life slimeball really cares.Before the angry voters drop the hammer on him he will retire like Ben Nelson of Obamacare infamy.The people who own his vote will give him a marvelous golden parachute on his way out,Maybe even some job for millions of dollars per year.

      • Gerald Michael

        I live in California. We began this fight in 1994, Prop 187, and the courts threw it out; and now it is even worse — illegal alien lawyers, drivers licenses, state non-compliance with immigration law – all just this week. Frankly, the lights have just grown dimmer and dimmer here. I’m old, I have fought this for 30 years. I see the results on the near horizon – outnumbered in a democracy means something.

        • retired

          Gerald,the Greater Depression that’s just around the corner is going to destroy the welfare state.With no work & no entitlements the Illegals will head back home south of the border.A financial collapse will go through our society the way chemotherapy goes through a cancer patient.The Welfare State is so rotten that no amount of therapy can save it.Unfortunately many Americans who deserve better will also be hurt!
          If you read the financial articles & blogs (non MSM) you will see the actual stats & numbers pertaining to our present economic condition.What you will see will read like a horror story.The politicians are so corrupt & compromised that they cannot & will not do anything to fix the problems.They will be looking for ways to personally bailout & get lost before the whole deal goes under!

          • Gerald Michael

            Perversely, that makes me feel better; I think.

        • NAHALKIDES

          Right – and Republicans are outnumbered, perhaps forever, in CA now. That’s why they hold no state-wide offices, and will not do so for the foreseeable future. Why Establishment Republicans are so stupid they can’t see that amnesty will turn the rest of the country into CA is beyond me.

          • Gerald Michael

            I suspect when the entire country goes Democrat, and all the states, counties, cities, etc.,, the remaining Republicans will just switch parties like they did in the 1940s. I am amused by Texas’ Republican smugness; they are on very borrowed time; they are California 1992. And their bast**d Bushes were/are a major part of the problem.

  • Pelagian

    How to end immigration overnight: Make immigrants automatically admitted to the lice㎱㏌g board of all rich-people’s o㏄upations by show㏌g a college equⅳalent degree from their home country

  • BarryBarry

    The only “compromise” I would support is one that let children who have been here before High School have a path to citizenship.

    But…they would give up their right/ability to sponsor anyone. So they could not be a conduit through which their parents could become citizens.

    When the Leftists talk about the Dream act, they are hoping that no one notices that currently, legalizing the children provides a way for the parents to be legalized. Remove this back door Amnesty trick and you can accomplish the supposed goals of enabling children who have no knowledge of their parent’s country to stay and avoid opening the floodgates to the parents and individuals.

    • Drakken

      No more compromises period! No amnesty period! Let these pols know if they vote for amnesty, they are traitors and should be treated as such. No more giving in, not one more bloody inch!

    • veeper

      There are (used to be) consequences for illegal actions and breaking laws.

      That’s called a deterrent….

  • Gerald Michael

    Talking about compromises, eliminate all dual citizenship, co-citizenship, dual nationality and co-nationality options.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      Those are totally separate issues.

      • 1Indioviejo1

        If you have dual citizenship, who would you fight for?

        • objectivefactsmatter

          It depends on many things.

          Dual citizenship is something that needs to be managed carefully, obviously. And I agree that some changes need to be made, but that has little to do with the question of enforcing laws and whether or not to incentivize future lawbreaking with an amnesty program of any kind.

  • adam

    If an immigration bill is passed with Republican support, I won’t vote, I won’t volunteer, I won’t contribute, and I will tear up my Republican registration card. Hasta la vista.

  • http://www.abay.vn/Ve-quoc-te/ve-may-bay-di-tay-ban-nha Nhóm Đào Tạo

    I guarantee another amnesty will cause a third of Republicans to quit voting forever.

    ve may bay di Han Quoc
    ve may bay di Anh gia re
    Tour du lich Nhat Ban Ha Noi

    • Gerald Michael

      I have been saying that as well. It is the truth.

  • ssohara

    My parents were LEGAL immigrants to the US. I am 100% against ILLEGAL immigration. It’s the LAW. Why are we rewarding people for breaking the law???

    • nomoretraitors

      Because we have so many traitors and collaborators

  • veeper

    America’s leadership will bow before law breakers. The very people that have invaded America. And, then use them just as they use everyone else in America.

    America’s leadership has not controlled America’s borders and stopped the blatant breaking of immigration laws because they DO NOT WANT to do that.

    America’s leadership has failed and betrayed Americans for over 50 years. America’s government has failed to perform the most basic and foremost reason for a central government ….to protect Americans and the country from foreign invaders….

    The United States government is the most corrupt, criminal, deceitful and dishonest government on the planet.

  • American1969

    Remove from office any and all politicians that vote in favor of amnesty. Period.

    THROW ALL ESTABLISHMENT BUMS OUT IN 2014!

  • USARetired

    Not even Obama will receive amnesty in 2014!!!!

  • veeper

    Boehner protects the entrenched establishment system members have spent 40 years building for themselves….

    He won’t be removed by fellow establishment members…..

    Got to be done at the ballot box…..either voting him out or electing enough Tea party members around the country to remove him.

    Same with mcconnell in the Senate…..

  • veeper

    Heard commie/democrat Schummer on TV today spouting his sales pitch about amnesty for illegal immigrants……

    5 minutes later he’s talking about Snowden as a lawbreaker that should return to the U.S. and face the consequences of his actions. He deserves to be tried for breaking America’s laws….

    HUH!!……One person, Snowden, should be tried for breaking America’s laws……

    however, 11 million (schummer’s number) illegalls that break America’s laws deserve to get a pass on breaking America’s laws….

    Just like obama ….schummer picks and chooses who should get away with breaking laws and whose should be tried…..

    same old liberal/progressive/communist/democrat double standards….to suit their personal needs…..

  • James Mayer

    If 2014 ends up the year of Amnesty, it will by extension wind up being the year of advancement for White Nationalism as well. You can’t expect Europeans to have America taken from them without a major backlash; liberals and non-white agitators may like to believe it, but you just can’t. So push our people just a little more, would you? Just a little…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBNBzeOCmaQ

  • Gary Bryant

    Send the PRO amnesty politicians back to Mexico too….all of them! OR better yet let them pay for the costs associated with ILLEGALS staying over in the USA! I’m not paying for it!