Blame the Immigrants
Molly Ivins believes Bush's flip-flop on immigration is a sign Republicans intend to avoid being blamed for problems by placing the blame on immigrants instead:
More Immigrant Bashing on the Way, by Molly Ivins, Commentary, AlterNet: While the rest of you were celebrating life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, I was keeping an eye on Karl Rove -- because someone has to.
A "Bush Signals Shift in Stance on Immigrants" headline is the early warning sign that we're about to get an all-out immigrant-bashing campaign for the fall, complete with xenophobia, racism and blaming the weakest, least powerful people in the country for everything that's wrong with it.
House Republicans, who know a good socially divisive issue when they see one, are perfectly happy to blame illegal workers for everything. Trade policy, repealing taxes for the rich, corruption in Congress -- it's all done by illegal workers. ... Can't you see that everything that's wrong with this country is because of illegal aliens? It's all their fault. The people in charge have nothing to do with it. ...
Bush was planning to take a stab at resolving the problem, particularly on the Mexican border, with a guest-worker program. But the House Republicans had a hissy fit ... and demanded harsher measures, militarization of the border, a big fence. Not gonna work, y'all. Build a 50-foot fence, and they'll build a 51-foot ladder...
The catch-and-release program currently run for Mexicans by the U.S. government is damn silly. So what will work? If you want to stop Mexicans from crossing the border to work here, put Americans who hire them in jail. Since the Americans who hire them are also often (not always) large donors to the Republican Party, you will have to take that up with them. ... If you don't want Mexicans walking into this country, make sure no one is offering them jobs. You could even pass a law about it. You could even enforce the law. ...
I'm not as convinced as she is that this is a good strategy for Republicans or a strategy they will pursue for the fall elections. But I wouldn't have thought a lot of the antics used in previous elections would work as well as they did, so it's quite possible she's right and immigrants will join the ranks of treasonous media, gay marriage, flag burning, criticism of the war effort, welfare making the poor lazy, and high taxes making the rich lazy as driving forces behind our problems.
Posted by Mark Thoma on Friday, July 7, 2006 at 10:41 AM in Economics, Immigration, Politics |
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