Why Did GOP House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Lose His Primary?

MajorityLeader.govMajorityLeader.govEric Cantor's primary loss last night took Washington by surprise. Almost no one saw it coming, not even Cantor. Throughout the campaign, the Republican House Majority Leader, who represents Virginia's seventh congressional district, denied there was any chance he would lose. He apparently seemed jovial and "happy-go-lucky" at a big-ticket fundraiser just yesterday morning, like someone who'd just seen news that his victory was assured, according to a source of Breitbart's Jonathan Strong.

Cantor certainly took the race seriously enough, at least in terms of cash—he placed ads on Fox News in his district, and outspent opponent Dave Brat by a huge margin, paying more just for steakhouse dinners than Brat spent on his entire campaign. Somehow, he still lost.

A successful primary challenge to a leadership candidate is incredibly rare. The last time a House majority leader was taken out in a primary was…well, there was no last time. It's never happened before. The position was created in 1899.

Because Cantor's primary loss was such a rare and unexpected event, there's no single ready explanation for what happened. Instead, there are a handful of competing narratives singling out Cantor's stance on immigration, his distance from his district's concerns, and his coziness with big business interests. Here are four possible explanations for Cantor's unexpected loss. 

It was about immigration reform and "amnesty": This is the argument you'll likely hear most often. As Strong writes, the story of the surprise loss "starts, and almost ends, with immigration." Much of the Republican base—the people who turn out for primaries—is dead set against any attempt to reform the immigration system in a way that legalizes current immigrants, and Cantor was seen by many as favoring those efforts. Brat, an economics professor, was a staunch opponent of recent immigration overhaul proposals, saying that bringing more people into the country would "increase the labor supply—and by doing so, lower wage rates for the working person. He charged Cantor with supporting "amnesty"—calling him "the number one cheerleader in Congress for amnesty"—a charge that Cantor denied in campaign fliers.

There's a counterargument here, however, a big part of which that Cantor was actually the member of GOP leadership least supportive of immigration reform. As The Washington Post's Greg Sargent argues, Cantor could better be described as an obstacle to passing an immigration overhaul; Cantor pushed for a vote to legalize DREAM act eligible immigrants as a way to allow the GOP to look gentler on immigrants without actually having to pass wholesale immigration reform. And one poll by Public Policy Polling (PPP)—which, yes, describes immigration reform in a rosy way and does not present potential tradeoffs—found that overall Cantor's district supports immigration reform.

It was about big business, crony capitalism, and corporate welfare: Brat made this a major theme of his insurgent campaign against the majority leader. Back in April, Politico reported Brat saying that "if you're in big business, Eric's been very good to you, and he gets a lot of donations because of that, right? Very powerful. Very good at fundraising because he favors big business. But when you're favoring artificially big business, someone's paying the tab for that. Someone's paying the price for that, and guess who that is? You."

Brat hammered Cantor for corporatist tendencies and big business connections in speeches. You can watch one in full here (via Zaid Jilani): 

It was about local-level constituent service: One thing is pretty clear—Cantor's district, as a whole, didn't much like him. In the PPP poll mentioned earlier, 63 percent of residents said they disapproved of the job that Cantor was doing in Congress, while just 30 percent approved. This is a district that leans heavily GOP and has voted for Cantor since 2001. But some reports suggest that locals were increasingly frustrated with Cantor's ambitious climb up the GOP leadership ladder, believing that it made Cantor a worse representative of local interests. As Jeff Schapiro of the Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote in his report on the loss, "Cantor's maneuvering on immigration was illustrative of a larger issue: a perception within Republican circles that Cantor, in his determination to succeed John Boehner as speaker, seemed more interested in positioning for the next phase of the nonstop news cycle than embracing a distinct agenda."

Political writer Robert Tracinski, who lives in Cantor's district, makes a similar point in a piece for The Federalist:

It's a strongly Republican district that spans across a very conservative stretch of rural Central Virginia, from the Richmond suburbs to Culpeper. So what were we going to do, vote for a Democrat? No, we were going to vote for Cantor.

And Cantor knew it. Because he didn't have to worry too much about getting re-elected every two years, his political ambition was channeled into rising through the hierarchy of the House leadership. Rise he did, all the way up to the #2 spot, and he was waiting in the wings to become Speaker of the House.

The result was that Cantor's real constituency wasn't the folks back home. His constituency was the Republican leadership and the Republican establishment. That's who he really answered to.

It was about reform conservatism: Cantor recently appeared at a big confab hosted by the American Enterprise Institute on Room to Grow, the YG Network's new book of conservative reform proposals, which leads Vox's Ezra Klein to argue that Cantor's loss is bad news this brand of wonkier, policy-pushing conservatism: "Cantor, a founding member of the 'Young Guns,' was one of reform conservatism's patron saints. His loss suggests reform conservatism doesn't have much of a constituency, even among Republican primary voters. The Republican base, at least in Cantor's district, isn't in the mood for technocratic solutionism. It's still angry, and it still believes that any accommodation is too much accommodation."

My guess is that it's mostly some combination of the first three—that immigration anger played a role, that Brat's arguments about corporate connections resonated, and that part of the reason they resonated is that residents of Cantor's district felt like he had creature of Republican leadership rather than a representative of Virginia's seventh district. But given how unexpected this was to practically everyone, I don't have too much confidence in any of the explanations. If it was clear and obvious, then more people would have seen it coming. 

Update: A few more possibilities... 

Democrats staged an operation chaos to give Cantor the boot: That's the theory offered by Cantor's pollster, John McLaughlin, who last week found that Cantor had a 34-point lead. Turnout for this primary was unusually high, and in an email to National Journal, McLaughlin suggests that the surge may have been the result of Democratic meddling. "Untold story," McLaughlin wrote, "is who were the new primary voters? They were probably not Republicans." 

Virginia Republicans didn't want to vote for Cantor because he's Jewish: David Wasserman, an elections analyst for the Cook Political report, tells The New York Times that religion was a factor: "Part of this plays into his religion," Mr. Wasserman told the Times. "You can’t ignore the elephant in the room." The problem with this explanation is that it doesn't explain why that became an issue now. Cantor's religion has never been an issue in his district before. 

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  • Hyperion||

    Because he didn't schmoozy up with Super POTUS and his sidekick, Orange Man, enough?

  • UnCivilServant||

    Isn't Orange Man Florida Man's arch-nemesis?

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    No. Orange Man's arch-nemesis is Juiceman.

  • UnCivilServant||

    I stand corrected.

  • Florida Man||

    My nemesis is the python.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    SO you're allied with Pro Lib...

  • John||

    There's a counterargument here, however, a big part of which that Cantor was actually the member of GOP leadership least supportive of immigration reform.

    That might mean that immigration didn't play a role in his defeat. It might also mean that immigration is such a toxic issue with GOP voters that even being the "least supportive" gets you voted out of office.

  • mr simple||

    Or that facts don't matter when your opponent can get ideas about you to stick in the minds of the voters.

  • John||

    That too. But if Cantor allowed his opponent to misrepresent him that badly, he is a pretty incompetent politician.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Brat was just on the radio, and he stated it was the other way around - Cantor misrepresented his views.

    He also downplayed immigration as being a large part of why he won - stating that the cronyism and constituent representation were much bigger issues.

  • RJ The Terrible||

    Cantor got him self up to his eyebals in the Virginia wode Republican civil war. He has spent a fair bit of time getting involved in some seedy crap getting people thrown of the delagate slates to the state wide convention where Gillespie just got coronated the Team Red challenger to Warner.

    He is aligned - shockingly - with the Crony-capitalism twits who think making kissy face with their progressive Team Blue friends is going to win him admirers in the Reoublican base.

    Its that base that he has either enraged or turned off. The enraged came out to vote against him. The turned off stayed home. Immigration is not a big issue in the state right now. Team Red is focused on stopping McAuliffe.

  • Drake||

    More likely the real problem was that Cantor was perceived as a DC Rino who couldn't be trusted. Doesn't matter what his official position was - they thought he would side with the Boehner and the national party whenever they needed him - and screw whatever he promised.

  • NoVAHockey||

    "The Republican base, at least in Cantor's district, isn't in the mood for technocratic solutionism"

    You mean they aren't progressives? Horrors.

  • Mike M.||

    No shit. I can just imagine how much that probably chaps Suderman's ass, given that he worships at the altar of Top Man technocratic solutionism.

  • ||

    eh... what?

  • Mike M.||

    What do you mean, what?

  • craiginmass||

    "You mean they aren't progressives? Horrors"

    Given the choice, many would still support slavery, posses and lynching. They are as far from progressive as you can be!

    The Republican base there consists of those who honor their Confederate ancestors and hate brown and black people - except those who are unseen and do all their work for them.

  • chevy706||

    More of the same from Craig, a lot of accusatory language, nothing to back up the assertions.

    Tell me Craig, does having MSNBC's hand shoved up your ass feel good after awhile? Must be better than thinking.

  • WTF||

    Team Red bad, m'kay?

  • craiginmass||

    Don't watch any TV except Silicon Valley on HBO.

    But whatever.

    Backing up the assertions? Lots of evidence, including living in the south for 3 years. Read "Confederates in the Attic" - it's a true story about a dude who traveled all through there recently.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C....._the_Attic

  • jmomls||

    If Mass=Massachusetts and you were educated there, I can see why your posts make no sense.

  • Sevo||

    So we swapped a guy a bit better on immigration for a guy a bit better on econ?
    Not sounding like an improvement.

  • John||

    I think Brat is a lot better on economic issues and he also made an issue out of the NSA. He is a huge improvement over Cantor on every issue but immigration. And even on immigration, Cantor was in it for himself. Maybe he would have sold out his constituents on it for the right combination of money and and perks or maybe not. It is not like Cantor actually believed in open borders. If you were counting on Cantor for amnesty, you were at best counting on people being able to buy him off on the issue, which is hardly a sure bet.

  • Cytotoxic||

    All true. I'm sure Cantor is just the type to have turned any immigration reform into a total pork-and-statism fest.

  • Sevo||

    J&C
    Don't know enough about them to disagree at this point; I was shooting from the hip.

  • Virginian||

    I'm sure Cantor is just the type to have turned any immigration reform into a total pork-and-statism fest.

    Not sure if he keeps kosher or not.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    Or back E-verify as a "compromise".

    I'm a big time fence straddler on immigration. But if I had a choice between complete 100% open borders and complete 100% open borders and E-Verify, then just give me the open borders. We can fix those later. If E-verify gets done, it'll take major political capital to get rid of it, if it can be done at all.

  • Virginian||

    If E-verify gets done, it'll take major political capital to get rid of it, if it can be done at all.


    Yes, apparently I should support a giant government database in this case because immigration is a human right.

  • lap83||

    I don't get why so many here like amnesty. It's a purely emotional solution to a political issue and I'd bet that pretty much every politician supporting it has an ulterior motive. Libertarians are usually more skeptical of emotional manipulation in politics.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Because amnesty is compatible and necessary for the libertarian dream of freedom. Everything else you said is just chaff.

  • lap83||

    It isn't freedom. It's rewarding people who are willing to break the law. I don't necessarily like open borders, but I think amnesty is worse because of the incentives it creates..for both immigrants (as in increasing incentives for immigrants who don't care about laws)and politicians by encouraging duplicitous schemes like vote-buying.

  • Virginian||

    Bingo. I do think the borders should be open, Ellis Island style. Disease check, criminal background check, seven years before you can vote. No welfare, no free healthcare. If you commit a crime you go straight back.

    I'd also like to see an entrance fee devoted to paying down the national debt, but that's probably a pipe dream.

    Amnesty is just a way for statist politicians to instantly mint millions of new statist voters. That's all it is.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I'd also like to see an entrance fee devoted to paying down the national debt, but that's probably a pipe dream.

    This. And double it for anyone getting an amnesty.

    The thing is, I understand why politicians are reluctant to have immigration reform under this economy. Fix that first.

  • lap83||

    "Ellis Island style. Disease check, criminal background check, seven years before you can vote. No welfare, no free healthcare. If you commit a crime you go straight back."

    That seems extremely fair and rational to me. So it obviously will never happen. Oh well.

  • Restoras||

    Why do you hate freedom, Virginian?

  • jjjjj||

    Amnesty with our current level of welfare will cause massive increases in government spending, which is the best measure of the size of government.

    The status quo isn't all that bad of a situation economically as illegal immigrants tend to pay a greater share of their tax burden but consume less in government benefits compared to legal immigrants, but politicians on both sides have this idea that their side's solution is the best and must happen or the current situation will destroy us. Gridlock is our friend.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    +1. lap83 has it right.

  • MWG||

    "It's rewarding people who are willing to break the law."

    Gasp!

    We probably shouldn't let non violent drug offenders out of prison either, right? Teh law iz teh law.

  • lap83||

    Yup. If a law exists it can never go away. That's exactly my point.

  • MWG||

    Should blacks have been punished under Jim Crow?

  • Jordan||

    No, your point was that breaking the law is immoral even if the law is immoral. That's not any better.

  • R C Dean||

    I think there's a fair amount of emotionalism around "amnesty."

    I say that because (nearly) everybody still wants some limits on immigration. No communicable diseases, no criminal record, that kind of thing.

    Which means you don't really want philosophically pure open borders, you still want it to be illegal for some people to immigrate, you still want an enforcement mechanism, you still want some people deported.

    Would a "wide gates, high fence" policy be more libertarian? Sure. Its what I support. But that high fence means enforcement, which means people who break our law are going to have their freedom of movement and association limited.

    Unqualified amnesty means you don't think people who break our law should have their freedom of movement and association limited. Support for "amnesty" tends to be pretty unreflective about what it really means, which is why I think a lot of it is emotionally driven.

    I'm not saying limited amnesty is unacceptable, although I have very real doubts about the incentives it creates (see, e.g., the current flood of minor immigrants now being warehoused in Arizona). But "amnesty yay" leaves me cold.

  • ||

    I see amnesty as a squishy, very politician-oriented solution to a very difficult situation. Rooting out all illegals would require an appalling violation of constitutional rights, privacy, and an expansion of our already massive law enforcement community. It would also cost a fuckton of money. So some politicians see amnesty as a way of avoiding those very large negatives, possibly getting those pardoned by amnesty to vote for them, and pleasing pro-immigration voters as well. It's a simple way for them to avoid the bigger, thornier issue of the immigration process itself, which is exactly the easier path I would expect a politician to take.

    And the best part of it is that it leaves just about everyone dissatisfied, as the immigration process is unchanged and so therefore the exact same situation will arise soon enough again. It doesn't help new immigrants, it doesn't make anti-immigration people happy, and it doesn't change anything. So it's basically the ultimate politician's solution.

  • R C Dean||

    I have not one single point of disagreement with this post.

    Amnesty is a Band-Aid solution to a very hard problem.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    You can see the exact purpose of amnesty when you suggest a "compromise" consisting of exactly their amnesty proposal minus citizenship. You can even propose permanent residency, and most pro-amnesty politicians will kick and scream. Why? It's cheap vote-buying to them.

    Here's my simple, but entirely unrealistic proposition:

    All illegals currently in the US have 6 months to choose one of two options.

    1) They may either self-emigrate back to their nation of origin, wait in the back of the line, and immigrate normally, thus preserving their eligibility for citizenship and all the perks of being a legal immigrant.

    OR

    2) They may apply for a special "permanent resident" visa that entitles them to no perks (no welfare, no social programs, limited tax credits/deductions) and destroys any path to citizenship for them. However, they are now fully legal residents of the US and can no longer be harassed.

    The progs would pitch a fit, because they think everybody is shooting for citizenship. I bet option 2 would be just fine for large swaths of the illegal community.

  • craiginmass||

    So then when your gardener has a horrible accident and you go to the Emergency room, they say "lt 'em die" and have a special lot outside where you can dump him?

    Well thought out.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Yeah, let's make it illegal for them to buy health insurance too!

  • MWG||

    "They may either self-emigrate back to their nation of origin, wait in the back of the line..."

    Ah yes, that magical "line" I keep hearing so much about.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    + 0.96 of this.

    This is why I'm reflexively against anything called "comprehensive" immigration reform. Everybody except hardcore "shut the border now" types should be able to agree that no matter what else is disagreed on, something like this would be an improvement. But they can't agree. Because they all see it as more of a political tool than a problem to be solved.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    I was agreeing with trshmnstrs proposal.

  • GW||

    Undocumented immigrants already benefit from welfare and social programs, so denying them that on paper in scenario #2 isn't practical. Many of these programs don't question immigration status, so saying a certain class of persons isn't relevant of the service providers aren't asking the question up front in the first place.

  • Drake||

    You should read the many Reason articles on the wonders of open borders and unfettered immigration. Everyone here knows that importing millions of poor, lefty-voting people will bring about the libertarian rapture.

  • Restoras||

    We could all learn something from the Wise and Learned Drake!

  • MWG||

    Give it to that strawman good and hard.

  • Drake||

    Hey! I only give it to straw women.

  • MWG||

    Touche.

  • Harvard||

    Give the Drake some credit, he's obviously been here long enough to understand the influence "open borders" has on the Libertarian erection.

    It also seems probable that understanding will keep him from ever yanking a ballot handle for a Libertarian.

  • Brandybuck||

    Not sure how great Brat is on economics if he thinks labor mobility is a bad thing

  • OneOut||

    He realizes the positives of labor mobility take a back seat to the negatives of an oversupply on wages and is willing to admit it.

    That's "greater" than most politicians.

  • OneOut||

    "over supply of labor"

  • Lady Bertrum||

    Brat is better than Cantor because he hasn't yet been co-opted by special interests. Cantor's three top donors where Goldman Sachs and two other large "banks".

    There is an opportunity for Brat to go full Amash which would be a very good thing.

  • ||

    Because the Tea Party hates Jews.

  • Ska||

    Fuck the squirrels, right in the nuts.

  • Ska||

    Anyway, yesterday's WaPo article had a similar sentiment running through the horrific comments section there. I actually have to reconsider my evaluation of youtube commentators after reading the comment threads in the WaPo Cantor article.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Don't lower your standards just because commenters have managed to find new lows.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    Cantor Primaried. Women and Minorities hit hardest.

    It's amazing how often this template is actually used.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    Holy Crap. Just noticed the update. This template was used by the New York Times. Isn't that the classical source?

  • Lady Bertrum||

    Watching Squawk Box on CNBC this a.m., Joe Kernen suggested it was anti-Semitism. Yeah, he was initially elected and then re-elected multiple times without the locals realizing he was the JEWZZZZZZ.

  • Virginian||

    Yeah, he was initially elected and then re-elected multiple times without the locals realizing he was the JEWZZZZZZ.

    That's us stupid fucking hicks in VA. We just didn't realize he was JOOOOoooo what with his lack of horns and hooves and tail.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    I wish those of us in Jersey could say we weren't aware that Christie was a tremendous fat bastard*, but, well, it was pretty hard to miss the gigantic gut and jello butt.

    *NTTATWWT.

  • grrizzly||

    This must be an approved talking point. I see it everywhere.

  • sarcasmic||

    Jewish candidate defeated because everyone in the TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party is a bunch of anti-Semitic Nazis! If they had their way they'd round up the Jews and put them in concentration camps because they're Jew hating Nazis! TEA Party is the Nazi party! Defeat of a Jewish candidate proves it! Nazis!

  • R C Dean||

    You can always tell anti-Semitic folks because they are strong supporters of Israel.

  • craiginmass||

    True Dat! I listened to Hagee and the others - they want Israel to be there for the soon-to-come rapture, so they support it.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    You really are stupid aren't you?

    I mean - I would explain RC's point - but I get the idea that facts and you just don't get along.

    Principals, not principles!

  • mr simple||

    That's hilarious. Now the proggies love him and only racists wanted to vote him out.

  • sarcasmic||

    Well, duh. The only reason the TEA Party voters voted for someone else is because they hate Jews. Everyone knows that they're racist. I mean, they're critical of Obama's policies. That makes them racist. So it's no surprise that they hate Jews as well.

  • mr simple||

    The T stands for Theocracy, right? That's what progressives tell me.

  • creech||

    "bringing more people into the country would "increase the labor supply—and by doing so, lower wage rates for the working person"

    So does having children. Would those who believe the above, be o.k. with government limiting parents to 2.1 children or whatever rate is appropriate to limit those entering the labor force at 18 being equal to those retiring?

  • John||

    So does having children.

    Only if they go to work at birth and your fertility rate is above replacement, which right now it is not. Otherwise, they replace existing workers.

    Brat is making an economic appeal to the voters' in that district's interests. Whatever your opinion of immigration's overall effect on the economy, it will hurt some people. And the voters in that district are likely some of those people hurt by it.

    You may not care that they are hurt by it or even if you do understand that such are the wages of freedom and the market, but you cannot expect such people to voluntarily vote against their interests or claim Brat is making an irrational argument. He is not.

    There isn't any necessarily right or wrong answer to the issue, just various results that the laws of the market will produce. Which results are the "right" results to you depends on what you value. You value cheap labor costs and freedom of movement across borders, you support open borders. If you value higher wages for low skilled native workers and less social disruption due to immigration, you don't like open borders. In both cases it is a value judgement and neither side is being irrational.

  • Cytotoxic||

    In both cases it is a value judgement and neither side is being irrational.

    Moral relativism.

    You value cheap labor costs and freedom of movement across borders, you support open borders. If you value higher wages for low skilled native workers and less social disruption due to immigration

    False dichotomy and economic illiteracy.

  • John||

    It is only moral "relativism" if you think people acting in their own interest and exercising their sovereign rights as a nation are "immoral". I don't think that. And frankly only a fanatical asshole would think otherwise. You can support open borders and not think those who don't are being immoral. IN fact, thinking they are immoral makes you immoral in my opinion.

    False dichotomy and economic illiteracy.\

    No it is not and only a half with economic illiterate would fail to see that. You are the best example on here of someone who thinks they understand economics but really just knows buzzwords and views the market as some kind of magical tool that will always produce the desired result rather than just a set of laws describing behavior. The first thing to understand about the market is "individual results may vary". There is no guarantee that the market will produce desired results for everyone or every group. It will only produce, if let alone, the most efficient result in the aggregate. Whether that is the "best" result or not depends on what you value. Pretending that allowing huge numbers of low skilled workers into the country will not harm some workers who are already here is profoundly ignorant. So ignorant that it shows you don't even understand your own position.

  • John||

    Immigration laws are nothing but labor protectionism. The reason why they reduce overall efficiency is because they artificially control competition allowing native workers to charge a higher wage for a given amount of productivity than they otherwise would. The argument for open borders is that they allow the rest of us to get cheaper goods and services by not allowing native workers to charge a premium because the the protectionism. The counter of course is that maybe those higher prices are worth paying because of the societal goods associated with a tight labor market and fewer immigrants to assimilate.

    Which one of those arguments is "right" has nothing to do with economics and everything to do with what you value. If you want to be pro open borders, good for you. But at least try being less ignorant and understand the economics of it.

  • Fluffy||

    Immigration laws are nothing but labor protectionism.

    It is only moral "relativism" if you think people acting in their own interest and exercising their sovereign rights as a nation are "immoral".

    These two sentences really don't go together, dude.

    If we were talking about a domestic group trying to limit the importation of some good, and nakedly admitted that the reason they were doing so is because they wanted to sell their domestically produced goods at a higher price, I don't think you'd have a problem calling that "immoral".

    "I want to use force to make sure other people have to pay me an artificially high price for my stuff." That may be "people acting in their own interest" but it's immoral in a fairly straightforward way that you'd readily acknowledge in any other context.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    I agree with John's descriptive analysis. But I agree with Fluffy's normative analysis. Making a moral argument against protectionism seems pretty libertarian to me.

  • John||

    yes they do. I would not consider either group "immoral". There is nothing to say we couldn't have a country that has closed borders. It would be a different country but it wouldn't be immoral. Whether it would be a "better" country than one with open borders depends on what you value.

    There are some policies that really are immoral. But closed borders because you like the country to be less crowded and have a tight labor market are not one of them.

    One of the biggest reasons why many people of all political ideologies can be so insufferable is that they assume their policy preferences always have a moral dimension to them.

    If you want to tell yourself that anyone who advocates for laws that make them better off economically or the country look more like they want it to look is "immoral" when those policies differ from yours, good for you. I am sure it will make you feel great about yourself and sleep well at a night. It will also make you an insufferable douche bag. But since you will feel great about yourself, what difference does it make? Have fun.

  • Fluffy||

    If you want to tell yourself that anyone who advocates for laws that make them better off economically or the country look more like they want it to look is "immoral" when those policies differ from yours, good for you.

    New John positions:

    "It is not immoral to demand a high minimum wage."

    "It is not immoral to demand closed union shops for all employers."

    "It is not immoral to force all employers to provide health insurance to all their employees."

    "It is not immoral to force utilities to buy the solar energy I produce at a huge premium and raise everyone's electric bills to pay for it."

    Etc etc etc.

    "It is not immoral to advocate for laws that make you better off economically."

    Progs go wild giving John a standing ovation.

  • John||

    Those things are not immoral. They are just wrong. Again, if thinking everyone who disagrees with you is "immoral" works for you, have fun. It doesn't keep me from laughing at you though.

  • Robert||

    Exactly: wrong vs. immoral. You turn questions of fact or preference into ones of morality, you just engender ill feeling all around, especially in yourself.

  • Robert||

    One of the biggest reasons why many people of all political ideologies can be so insufferable is that they assume their policy preferences always have a moral dimension to them.


    True. As RAW wrote, "Convictions make convicts." Morality has its good points, but it is dangerous and tends to corrupt what it is spilled on. Let too much morality into your politics, or anything else, and you just poison it, which means you're poisoning yourself.

  • John||

    Beyond that fluffy, you just made my point. Whether you are open borders or not is a value determination not an economic determination. There is no "economic answer". There is a set of results and which you prefer depends on what you value.

    You can call the other side wrong or even if you are a smug douche immoral. But you can't call them economically illiterate, because economics doesn't argue one way or the other.

  • Fluffy||

    Whether you are open borders or not is a value determination not an economic determination.

    So what you're saying is that you can't make an economic determination that Smoot-Hawley was a bad idea?

    Try to remember that there's no difference between labor and any other good, John. That's the first thing you have to keep in mind.

    Then replay this discussion and make it about goods and not labor.

    Are you seriously arguing that economists would tell you that there's no economic answer to the question, "Should a country seal its borders and eliminate trade?" Really?

    I happen to think it's a moral issue first, but obviously there is an economic answer to the question of whether trade is good or bad.

    You just drink the prog Kool-Aid and argue that there's something special or privileged about labor - when there isn't.

  • John||

    So what you're saying is that you can't make an economic determination that Smoot-Hawley was a bad idea?

    Only if you know what "bad"is. What you don't understand is that there are values beyond absolute efficiency and there are goals other than that. You think that any goal other than that is per say immoral and economically wrong and that is just idiotic.

    I will give you credit, you are smarter than most. You do get the economic arguments. You just don't understand what they mean.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    Are you saying that making a moral argument against protectionism makes one a smug douche?

    I agree there are other reasons one could be against open borders. But that particular argument seems like a straightforward application of NAP, regardless of ones position on the douche spectrum.

  • Fluffy||

    John's instincts come pretty close to being reliably libertarian in many areas.

    But he has one blind spot: he wants to defend certain types of Republicans against the accusation that they are dicks.

    When those topics roll around, all of a sudden he's Mr. Popular Sovereignty.

    Usually it's in social conservative contexts. "Well, you can't expect religious people to not try to have a voice in the type of community they live in!" he'll tell me. (When naturally of course I can expect that.) Immigration is another. "Of course people are going to be angry when the supply of labor increases! That's only reasonable!" If you're a looter, sure.

    I rub his nose in it because in any other context if it was a liberal commentator making the argument that the whole point of political participation is so you can use the power of the state to secure benefits for yourself at the expense of others, he would freak out. But he just can't see it when it gets in his blind spot.

  • John||

    No fluffy, I am not Libertarian on open borders. And you can think Republicans are dicks all you want. The point is that is a value judgement not an economic one.

    I would rub your nose in your stupidity, but you are not smart enough to know it is shit I ma rubbing your nose in.

    The bottom line is that people don't argue for closed borders because they are evil or the RACIST. They do it because they see closed borders as in their interests. You don't like that so you pretend it is not true and add moral elements where none exist. Ultimately, if you want to sell people on open borders you need to address their concerns and try and mitigate the impact so they have a reason to support you.

    You don't do that. You just choose to be a buffoon and choose to call everyone immoral. It is just pathetic. But it is no uncommon. Meanwhile the only people who agree with you are Progs and crony capitalist who just view open borders as a path to graft, and new dependent victim groups. Good luck with that.

  • Cytotoxic||

    That was an incredibly retarded statement for an econ prof to make. I hope he's lying.

  • John||

    It is not retarded at all. He said "working person" meaning lower wage and lower skilled. And immigration does lower the wages of people in that position. Indeed, if it didn't, how would immigration proponents claim lowering the cost of goods and services as one of the benefits of immigration?

  • Virginian||

    Well, if by incredibly retarded you mean absolutely correct. Ceteris paribus, more workers competing for the same number of jobs will lower wages. That's not really a controversial statement. It's basic economics.

    Now you can argue that lower wages will result in lower prices across the board, which means that said workers will not see any decrease in quality of life. But you have to make that argument.

  • sarcasmic||

    I thought Congress repealed the law of supply and demand.

  • NoVAHockey||

    No. The House blocked it so Obama signed an executive order.

  • Restoras||

    Except that Obama just made it the Law of Demand.

  • Cytotoxic||

    So every serious study on immigration that has found that immigration has no lowering effect on wages is wrong and you're simpleton DEY TRK R RERBS economics is right? I'm going to go with the DATA.

    THE LABOR MARKET IS NOT HOMOGENOUS

  • Virginian||

    So every serious study on immigration

    That would be the ones that support your predetermined conclusion?

  • Cytotoxic||

    The rigorous ones do happen to support my position, just as rigorous studies on fracking and GMOs find they are both totally safe! IT MUST BE A CONSPIRACY

  • Virginian||

    The rigorous ones do happen to support my position

    I'm sure you believe this is true.

  • sarcasmic||

    The rigorous ones do happen to support my position...

    Translation: Any study that does not support my position is not rigorous.

  • sarcasmic||

    So every serious study...

    Translation: Every study with a different conclusion is not serious.

  • R C Dean||

    immigration has no lowering effect on wages

    Legal immigration? Sure. Plausible.

    Illegal immigration? I kinda doubt it, at least at the bottom of the market.

    And it is hard to argue that something that has no lowering effect on wages nonetheless has a beneficial knock-on effect of lowering prices.

  • Protagoronus||

    more workers competing for the same number of jobs

    There are a fixed number of jobs? Supply and demand never shift?

  • Virginian||

    Supply and demand never shift

    What? Idiot.

    There are a fixed number of jobs

    Fucking moron.

    Disingenuous quoting of other people's words is fun.

  • Protagoronus||

    .... you say above more numbers competing for the same number of jobs results in lower wages. That is 100% true. My point is that the economy is not fixed. More workers can make the economy more vibrant creating more jobs and raising wages and supply of jobs in the long run. Let's all get pissed off. Angry!!!!!!!

  • Virginian||

    I'm pissed off because you cut off the most important part of my statement. It's mendacious as fuck.

    Ceteris paribus, more workers competing for the same number of jobs will lower wages. That's not really a controversial statement. It's basic economics.
  • Protagoronus||

    Look pal-o, I took your point above as claiming that allowing increased immigration would mean that more workers would be competing for the same number of jobs. If that was not your point, I missed it. If that was your point, I think it's wrong.

  • OneOut||

    Protagoronus|

    Ceteris paribus is the point you missed.

    And if you have to google it that means you never took so much as Econ 101 and have no business in the argument you are posturing in.

  • Protagoronus||

    Sheeeit Virginian taught me how to say "all else equal" with two more syllables in a dead language. Which somehow negates all the actual Economics I learned.

    I went a little hard on his comment, but my frustration lies with Econ professor basically assuming all else is indeed equal.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Under the current regulatory environment, the jobs:people ratio has been getting worse on its own. Adding more people won't induce vibrancy with that overhead.

  • sarcasmic||

    Under the current regulatory environment, the jobs:people ratio has been getting worse on its own. Adding more people won't induce vibrancy with that overhead.

    Exactly. This isn't a century ago where anyone off a boat could start a business and add to the economy.

  • cavalier973||

    Well, then, it sounds like the problem to fix is gov't regulation rather than immigration.

  • MWG||

    This^

    Also, Google, Intel, Whatsapp, any small family-run ethnnic food joint, etc...

  • OneOut||

    "Now you can argue that lower wages will result in lower prices across the board, which means that said workers will not see any decrease in quality of life."

    unless the product in question is produced by oligopolists or monopolist, or other crony capitalists, which is why it is an approved policy of the National Chamber of Commerce.

  • Virginian||

    Why Did GOP House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Lose His Primary?

    Because Brat got more votes.

    Seriously though, best analysis I saw came from this

    http://thefederalist.com/2014/.....ic-cantor/

    For almost as long as I’ve lived here, which is coming up on 20 years now, the purpose of the seventh district has been to re-elect Eric Cantor every two years. It’s a strongly Republican district that spans across a very conservative stretch of rural Central Virginia, from the Richmond suburbs to Culpeper. So what were we going to do, vote for a Democrat? No, we were going to vote for Cantor.

    And Cantor knew it. Because he didn’t have to worry too much about getting re-elected every two years, his political ambition was channeled into rising through the hierarchy of the House leadership. Rise he did, all the way up to the #2 spot, and he was waiting in the wings to become Speaker of the House.

    The result was that Cantor’s real constituency wasn’t the folks back home. His constituency was the Republican leadership and the Republican establishment. That’s who he really answered to.

  • Pathogen||

    "Why Did GOP House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Lose His Primary?"

    Because he sux? Or... because there were vested interests who were terrified that he might of taken the speakers gavel away from good ole reliable Tammy Fay Boehner, so.. he had to go...

  • ||

    I don't really care why exactly Cantor lost--such metrics are extremely hard to quantify--but whatever the reason(s), an incumbent got axed unexpectedly. I like that. I like to see that. It strikes fear into the normally complacent hearts of the 98% (or whatever it is) of incumbents who win reelection in every race in this country. Fear is good in politicians. It makes them a little less stupid.

  • John||

    Exactly. It is not like Cantor was Rand Paul or something. Even if Brat were a complete nitwit and much worse than Cantor, that still wouldn't outweigh the good of every member of the Republican caucus seeing Cantor's head on a stick and worrying they might be next.

  • Hyperion||

    I don't get all the fuss about the illegal immigrants. All of them are already here, every one of them! And we can't deport em, I need my lawn mowed, damnit!

  • UnCivilServant||

    Mow it yourself.

  • Cytotoxic||

    No.

  • sarcasmic||

    I let my wife do it.

  • OneOut||

    Why would you let your wife mow his lawn ?

    Reason is weird.

  • mr simple||

    I worked with a guy for a while that would mow his lawn twice a week just to get an hour away from his wife and kids.

  • Hyperion||

    An hour? What kind of pussy lawn is that? When I still mowed(my daughter lives in the house now, so her husband gets to mow, sucker!), it took 6 hours to mow, with a tractor.

  • cavalier973||

    I don't know; suppose that Hyperion is a brilliant neurosurgeon? Or a rocket scientist, or something? Each hour he spends mowing the lawn is an hour he's not doing neuroscience or building rockets. Comparative advantage, and all that jazz.

    Of course, he could hire an underemployed native American, amirite?

  • Cytotoxic||

    The only blemish here is that Brat is retarded on the link between immigration and wages. I hope he's lying and there is a small chance he is. Rubio happened once, it can happen again.

    RUBIO 2: CROSSING THE RUBIOCON or RUBIO 2: THE RETURN OF RUBIO'S REVENGE THE RECKONING

  • You Know Who Else||

    How can you walk with such large blinders on?

  • Dumptaker||

    Brat looks like Cantor a little. What's up with their voices? It's not hick, it's not city, it's some weird stick in the butt voice. I'm happy Cantor lost. Just thinking out loud, tootles.

  • Virginian||

    Brat is from Michigan originally, so he doesn't have a VA accent. Cantor is a Richmond native, has a pretty standard "rich white guy from Richmond" voice.

  • PBR Streetgang||

    Cantor definitely has the RWG from Richmond voice. If only his name were Cabell Halsey Byrd, IV or somesuch, and a degree from Hampden-Sydney he'd be all things RVA.

  • 110 Lean||

    WHITE HOUSE: CANTOR LOST BECAUSE HE WASN'T MORE PRO-AMNESTY

    As soon as House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) stunningly lost his primary to Dave Brat on Tuesday, the White House proclaimed that Cantor lost his race because he wasn't pro-amnesty enough.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    I'm going to throw an outrageous theory out there into the H&R interwebz.

    Here it is: Dave Brat was an excellent candidate.

    I've listened to two separate interviews the guy's done. He a small government Conservative's wet dream. I could list the qualities that make him a fine candidate, but it's easier to just go look at his interviews on youtube.

    He won because a)he was articulating the concerns of and policy prescriptions for issues most important to his constituency. b)he's a better retail politician than Cantor.

  • John||

    Yes Lady Bertrum. That is exactly it. Cantor spent his time in Washington wheeling and dealing and forgot to explain to his constituents how exactly he was looking out for them.

  • ||

    When voters in your district believe you're NOT representing them, but the big boys in DC, voting for the other guy is the only solution available.

  • Mike M.||

    I've listened to two separate interviews the guy's done.

    Which means that you probably did more actual investigative work than 95% of the pundits out there.

    Even many of the Reason contributors have been so conditioned to believe the Beltway/liberal media narrative that the TEA Party is all a bunch of loons, that the idea that one of them might be savvy would probably never even cross their minds.

  • kinnath||

  • Pro Libertate||

    You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here.

  • WDATPDIM?!||

    It hit him like a snow slide off a barn roof.

  • Restoras||

    I'm stealing this.

  • cw||

    Why Did GOP House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Lose His Primary?

    Because he's a big fat loser?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Turnout for this primary was unusually high, and in an email to National Journal, McLaughlin suggests that the surge may have been the result of Democratic meddling. "Untold story," McLaughlin wrote, "is who were the new primary voters? They were probably not Republicans."

    Typical establishmentarian logic. A bunch of people voted in a way i did not predict. Obviously, my prediction was correct, but the wrong voters went to the polls.

    Simple question, Mister Cantor: "Who do you work for?"

  • Virginian||

    If any Dems did vote for Brat, it's due to Team Cantor's bullshit attack ads. They called Brat a "liberal college professor" who "worked for Tim Kaine". Reap the whirlwind, RINO assholes.

  • Tak Kak||

    I've read contradictory things on this, are the Dems even running anyone for the election itself?

  • Raven Nation||

    This is from today's Times-Dispatch:

    http://www.timesdispatch.com/n.....f6878.html

    (read to the bottom).

    And here's Trammell's FB page:

    https://www.facebook.com/trammell4va

  • Tak Kak||

    Oh I see, he was elected by a committee.

    Thanks.

  • OneOut||

    But why oh why would Dems vote for a Tea Party candidate ?

    Cutting off their nose to spite their face ?

  • John||

    They can't even conceive of the other explanation for Democrats voting in the primary. Maybe this guy appealed to Democratic voters as well? The possibility that a Tea Party supported candidate could get working class Democrats to cross over and vote for them is just too horrible for the people at National Journal to contemplate.

  • craiginmass||

    That's funny!

    It ain't gonna happen because by the time the General Election gets here (especially 2016), these folks are going to have to express actual opinions and policies as opposed to Dog Whistles.

  • David Wall||

    That's pretty funny, a liberal accusing the opposition of using Dog Whistles--expressing controversial ideas only their constituency understands. That's a high art of President Obama's, isn't it?

  • thom||

    If your district is gerrymandered for one party to dominate, you have little choice but to vote in that party's primary if you want to have any say in who comes to power.

  • Harvard||

    Not sure is immigration (read amnesty) was even the principle reason Cantor lost, but it's delusional to think it wasn't high on the list. I'm thinking there is a fair number of people who's answer to immigration is still securing the borders and a fence.
    This could, hopefully, be understood as a chilling warning to the amnesty crowd who are up for election this fall, from both parties. On the other hand it could cause them to push the pedal down to pass it before November.

  • cavalier973||

    If the Border Warriors were truly serious about protecting the national borders, they would use their own resources rather than attempt to rely on a government solution. Raise capital, buy up all the land along the border, and turn it into a pit bull and rottweiler reserve.

  • Harvard||

    And that would stop the dumping of Honduran children in Phoenix for the future votes they may cast, how?

  • cavalier973||

    It's an analogy. If you see a genuine problem, fix it yourself, using your own resources. Stop running to the FedGov for "solutions", because all FedGov "solutions" only and always exacerbate the problem.

  • OneOut||

    The Minute Men tried this once and the Feds came down on them pretty hard.

    Might be one reason.

  • Harvard||

    Exactly. I'm guessing if the Feds would turn their heads the ranchers along the Rio Grande could put a stop to most of it. In a Libertarian, property rights kind of way too.

  • David Wall||

    Why did Cantor lose? Dave Brat was a better politician?

    Nah....that couldn't be it.

  • craiginmass||

    He lost for one simple reason.

    The white primary voters who go to the polls around there don't like brown and black people.

    Nothing new here.

    He also won for the same reason that "libertarianism" is popular- that being that's it's always easier to talk about things when you don't have to actually accomplish things.

    Now, let's see what this "Libertarian" says about women's reproductive rights......after all, he takes money for the Randian cause.

    As far as Congress, my friends from VA assure me he will be appointed head of the toilet paper committee. This way he can perhaps buy some Koch paper towels for the capitol.

  • cavalier973||

    Cantor is black?

    Also, why did he keep getting elected for so long?

  • craiginmass||

    Jews, Blacks, same thing!
    :-)

    Actually, he lost because he has some empathy for brown people. That's a more clear statement.

  • cavalier973||

    Did he just find this empathy, or something? Because I'm pretty sure he kept getting elected each new cycle until this latest primary.

  • craiginmass||

    He didn't back immigration reform as much in former times...it wasn't on the table.

    Plus, it always depends on the opposition. These issues - whether jews, immigration, etc. combined with a thousand or two Dems voting against him (open primary) can turn the tables.

    I do dislike having to explain simple things to the "logical" folks here - that is, there is often more than one causation involved. If ever there was evidence that Libertarian=Conservative, it's the idea that everything must be black-while, yes-no, as per your comment.

    Oh, and I'm glad to get rid of Cantor. He's the worst of the worst. My only point is that until the new guy actually has to make important decisions and take stances, he had a big advantage. Need I repeat "everything is so easy for those who don't have to actually do the tasks".

  • cavalier973||

    craiginmass @ 12:58:"He lost for one simple reason.

    The white primary voters who go to the polls around there don't like brown and black people."

    crainginmass @ 15:38: "I do dislike having to explain simple things to the "logical" folks here - that is, there is often more than one causation involved."

  • cavalier973||

    craiginmass? You preach it, brother.

  • Joao||

    Oooh, feelin the hate.

  • Big Boy||

    Given a viable choice (some Tea Party candidates haven't been ready for prime time), no Republican voter wants to support a RINO. If Republican voters wanted a Democrat representative, they would vote Democratic (as many Establishment R's do).

  • lap83||

    So which tears taste better? Progressive or GOP establishment?

  • cavalier973||

    It depends; what are you serving for dinner?

  • craiginmass||

    Well, compare the 8 years of GW to the 8 of Clinton and Obama economically and otherwise - and get back to us.

  • David Wall||

    You keep forgetting people. Here you forgot to include 8 years of Ronald Reagan.

    But are you sure Obama helps make your point? Other bankers and stockholders, the last 6 years have not been that good for most people economically. Yah, that's right, bankers and stockholders are the Democrats natural contingency--.

    BTW, Brian, most on this site despise GW. Come on, Brian, bring your A Game. You're giving us nothing, here.

  • OneOut||

    You're bragging on Obama's economic policies ?

    The economic output actually shrank last quarter after 6 years of Obama's "recovery".

  • craiginmass||

    Look up the stock markets and case-shiller. Together they represent tens of trillions of dollars, a lot of money in anyone's world.

    And, no, it's not just the very wealthy who benefit - many people have IRA's, etc.....at least folks in the top 30-40% or so.

  • straffinrun||

    Maybe his district finally realized Cantor looks like dick to every non team red voter. If it weren't for schadenfreude I'd have no reason to watch politics.

  • Joao||

    I am shocked, stunned at REASON magazine to offer so many options but miss the biggest one and be slightly dismissive of the 2nd largest one. In my opinion, of course.

    The biggest contributing factor for this upset is that last week, the left has been publishing a series of articles via the MSM that the Tea Party is dead or of little influence, due to their loss in primaries so far. Such dismissal of so many sincere voters only serves to get them stirred up... right on time for this upset.

    I would like to point out that this article does not contain the expression "Tea Party"; what' up with that? Methinks it is because immigration is a matter of divergence between Libertarians n Tea Party.

    Secondly, it was immigration. Amnesty, and the non-enforcement of the law bothers the Tea Party, as it should anyone who votes.

    The real solution to the immigration problem is to uphold the law, even if it raises hell. This will give the feedback to Congress that the law should change. All requirements should be cut in half, but illegals should be penalized and removed.

    That's my take. Rule of law, rule of law, rule of law.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    I think failure to use power of the purse to the fullest is also a possible motivation for many of the voters in question.

    Should have been able to make a counter case to the shutdown hysteria. But they didn't or couldn't. Seems like the end result was the normal logrolling that always goes on.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    If "rule of law" is the reason, what's the problem with amnesty? If more immigrants can immigrate legally, the "rule of law" types should be happy, right?

  • Harvard||

    [ If more immigrants can immigrate legally, the "rule of law" types should be happy, right?]

    Huh? You mean if more immigrants here by virtue of being aided and abetted in breaking the law and effectively quashing any "rule" of law, can be given amnesty, we should all be happier??

  • craiginmass||

    So the status quo is going to change because some guy enters Congress at the very lowest ranking???

    Fantastic!

    Remember, the Kochs and Big Ag and Big Biz love those immigrants - keeps pressure on wages, allows larger profits, do jobs no one else will and don't talk back.

    What's not to like. Privatize the profits and socialize the losses, as usual.

    Remember that the status quo (no reform) is the wet dream of those who LOVE undocumented workers.

    It seems that the right plays checkers instead of chess. They love jumping a guy, but can't think enough moves ahead or behind to actually make things better. It's always easy to be a critic - but we have the conservatives to thank for why we will always have the immigration problem. You can't fix it if you don't make legislation - and, if you don't compromise, you can't make law.

    Done.

  • Harvard||

    WTF are you talking about?

  • briannnnn||

    Let's go with the Jew thing. Because that totally explains why they voted for him in the past but didn't vote for him this year!

  • craiginmass||

    A bigger question is what Brat is going to say when the Pope himself tells him to be nice to brown poor people. That's going to be interesting.....

    Strangely enough, Southerners used to dislike Catholics as much as Jews - because they felt "Papists" would listen to the Pope above all else.

    It's interesting to see all these authoritarians battle with each other....

  • MSimon||

    He was nice. He promised to maintain the value of heir labor by not increasing supply.

  • Brian||

    Cantor certainly took the race seriously enough, at least in terms of cash—he placed ads on Fox News in his district, and outspent opponent Dave Brat by a huge margin, paying more just for steakhouse dinners than Brat spent on his entire campaign. Somehow, he still lost.

    But, we all know that's impossible.

    CITIZENZ UNITIED!!!!!1!11111

  • David Wall||

    Good point, Brian. In politics as in advertising spending millions in selling a bad product just accelerates the truth about your bad product and leads to a quicker failure. This campaign is likely a good example.

  • NotSure||

    The pro NSA vs anti NSA stance could also have played a role.

  • XM||

    Amnesty in some form is inevitable. The side that wants it has too much number on their side.

    But if the recent surge in unaccompanied minors crossing the border is any indication, even a watered down form of amnesty may trigger an immigration explosion that will change the nation for better or worse.

    And let's be honest, amnesty is an aspect of crony capitalism. Increased immigration is great news for retail, who benefits from impulse spending from the kind of people who has zip fiscal discipline. The subsidy gobbling agricultural industry may get some cheap labor.

    Reason writers can delude themselves into thinking that growth friendly policy will convert the immigrant ranks into libertarians. But I'm not fooled. And I'm more immigrant than most of you here.

  • craiginmass||

    You are correct - you cannot have reform (not should you) without some form which will be called amnesty.

    Let's face it. Life is not fair. It's usually much cheaper to break the law and then pay later.....for example, it's easier for the Koch's to pollute and only pay relatively small fine when caught - than to clean up their act.

    I always said about Gubment "If you ask, the answer is no" - meaning you are often better off just going ahead and asking questions later.

    Immigration is actually good for just about everything - except Angry White Long Term Americans who are too stupid to see the benefits. They are fairly stupid (inbreeding was rampant in many parts of the country) and can be riled up over most issues - especially those which concern people who don't look like them...or act like them.

  • Harvard||

    You're right, of course. My fault for not meeting a tired east cost lib years ago to set me straight. You learned types must be patient with us here in the hinterland.
    Thanka massa.

  • Erasmus vs. Luther||

    Oversimplified generalizations, personal attacks, no citing of statistics to support your theory, anecdotal evidence. You really hit that one out of the park.

  • MSimon||

    Lowering the value of labor by increasing the supply is good for whom? Ah the capitalists. I thought socialists were suspicious of capitalist motives.

    Are you a crony?

  • MSimon||

    I like this take:

    http://townhall.com/tipsheet/c.....aign=nl_pm


    What else does Chamber [of Commerce] want? They want amnesty. And what does that mean? That means illegal immigrants coming in are granted citizenship and its in the millions. ... If we bring in illegal immigrants, and there is a skills mismatch right, and then we are going to have to pay benefits, education, welfare, … The Heritage Foundation has numbers on all this I could bore you to death... Who is going to pick up the tab for all those unexpected costs?

    You are.

    Is big business gonna pay for that? No.

    So big business gets the cheap labor and the American people pay the tab.

    It’s unbelievable.

  • REMant||

    Libertarians had been upset with Cantor's demonstrated proclivities for some time and I don't find his loss surprising on the score. I am surprised that any Virginians would vote against him tho. There must be no govt facilities in his new district. The redistricting may have been a factor, but I believe it unlikely any Dems crossed over because of the rules in place unless an immense number were simply disingenuous. I would think his backers had begun to see him as a self-interested turncoat.

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