Border wall

The GOP Died at the Border Wall

The Republican Party hates immigrants more than it hates big government.

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In President Trump's America, anti-immigration animus is fast becoming the main organizing principle of the Grand Old Party. Not fiscal responsibility. Not the free market. Anti-immigrant fever.

For proof, look no further than the recent antics of two prominent Republicans: Rep. Mark Meadows (R–N.C.) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R–Ark.), both of whom have worked with the White House and floated plans to sacrifice traditional conservative economic principles to promote a harsh immigration agenda.

Meadows told Breitbart News, the organ of immigration hawks, recently that he was prepared to shut down the government again in September if Congress' spending bill failed to fund the Great Wall of Trump. "There is nothing more critical that has to be funded than the funding for the border wall," he declared.

It's stunning for Meadows to lobby for this money. He's an anti-spending warrior who helped found the House Freedom Caucus in 2015 for the express purpose of fighting rising government spending. He led the coup to depose House Speaker John Boehner two years ago after Boehner failed to cut half a billion dollars for Planned Parenthood from a bill to fund the government.

Yet here is Meadows now insisting that the border wall—that will cost upwards of $20 billion—needs to be funded fully. Why? He cites two reasons: President Trump made a promise to his base, and it is essential for national security. But a limited government conservative of all people should understand that if a lawmaker's campaign promises were a sufficient justification to fund government programs, America would have gone Greece's way many times over by now (not just when the bill for America's massive unfunded entitlement state comes due!). As for the security rationale, it's not just bogus — but backwards.

The Bipartisan Policy Institute's Theresa Cardinal Brown points out that a physical barrier, no matter how tall or strong or beautiful, will not deter drug cartels given that America boasts a $100 billion drug market—and that's just the annual number for the top four drugs. Cartels will find ways to go "over, under, around, or through any border infrastructure," she insists, by using drones, ultra-light planes, catapults, tunnels, submarines—and, most importantly, human mules.

Mules are typically desperate foreign workers who, finding it difficult to get into the U.S., sign up with cartels to carry drugs in their body cavities in exchange for free passage to America. The more difficult America makes it for these workers to cross the border on their own, the more they will choose the cartel option. This will cause the drug and human trafficking business to become even more tightly entwined, breeding more criminality and lawlessness at the border. And all for the low, low price of $20 billion.

So why build the wall? The real purpose, clearly, is the symbolism it offers the GOP's restrictionist base. However, if the austerity hawks of the party of limited government become champions of expensive and empty exercises in government spending, what leg will their party have to stand on when liberals start building bullet trains to nowhere to earn brownie points with their supporters? Clearly, Meadows doesn't care.

But fiscal responsibility is not the only GOP principle that the anti-immigration fever is burning. Sen. Cotton, a rising star of the party, unveiled the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment (RAISE) Act last week. This legislation also disses the party's commitment to markets and competition—everything that Republicans have long credited for making America great.

The Cotton bill would slash legal immigration in half by 2027 because he feels it's the government's duty to protect American workers from too much labor competition. So much for limiting the size and scope of government!

And the claim that a smaller workforce means more plentiful and higher-paying jobs for native workers is laughable on its face. Women's participation in the labor market doubled in the latter half of the 20th century, massively expanding the American workforce. By Cotton's logic, that should have produced rampant unemployment among American men and cratered male wages. But America's long bouts of full employment, including the one it is experiencing right now when we are in an alleged age of "mass immigration," offer ample proof against that thesis. That's because women didn't steal men's jobs, they created their own opportunities as America's dynamic market economy deployed their talents and skills to deliver new goods and services to consumers.

The same is true for foreign workers. Studies have repeatedly shown that even a sudden and large influx of poor foreign laborers has no big long-term negative impact on native wages. Even the short-term affect is often mild to negligible. Indeed, after the Mariel boatlift crisis in 1980, when Fidel Castro allowed 125,000 Cubans to flee to Florida, the wages of low-skilled Florida workers, with the possible exception of high-school dropouts, actually went up.

If expanding the workforce doesn't diminish American wages or job prospects, shrinking it, as the RAISE Act would, won't boost them either. The Center for Global Development's Michael Clemens has found that the termination of the Barcero guest worker program with Mexico in 1964 shrank the seasonal agricultural labor force by up to 20 percent. However, the wages of American workers in affected states went up not one bit.

What is Sen. Cotton's response to all this evidence? "Only an intellectual could believe something so stupid."

He's not just throwing pointy-headed intellectuals under the bus. Or even immigrants. He, along with other anti-immigration zealots in his party, is throwing away the bedrock fiscal and economic principles that have guided his party for at least the last three decades.

This column originally appeared in The Week

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  1. The illegal humans are eating my BRAINS!!!!! HELP!!!!

  2. The GOP hates everything more than big government.

    1. The real question is, does the GOP hate immigrants more than they hate free markets?

      1. It’s confusing that seemingly rational people can’t, or more likely just refuse to due to ideological zealotry, distinguish between illegal aliens and immigrants. Immigration is a legal term, it means you’ve come here with our government’s permission through a defined legal process. The people you’re terming ‘immigrants’ are actually illegal aliens, here without having gone through the legal process. Being a nation means you have something called borders and one of the few constitutional powers and duties of the federal government is the responsibility to guard and defend those borders and determine who may or may not enter this nation and the process for doing so. A nation without borders is really just a patch of land between real nations. Being pro-immigration, and I consider myself pro-immigration, does not mean advocating that we should have no control over our borders. There may be better ways to control our borders, for instance the 9/11 murderers came legally and stayed beyond their legal permission and the federal government still does not enforce those policies properly, but disagreeing with the proposed solution does not mean you have to just discard the notion of borders and a legal immigration process entirely.

  3. Foreigners love big government and vote for it

    1. Yes, every single person from the other side of an imaginary line has exactly the same ideas about everything, and they’re all out to get you.

      1. Well, they certainly want our freedom and welfare!

        1. How many immigrants do you personally know? I have known thousands, and not a single one was on welfare. I can’t say the same for the natives.

          1. And see that? You doxxed yourself, Pinnochio–clean up those wood chips and wash your hands.

            1. Huh?

          2. I have known at least one immigrant and they were immediately on Social Security disability.

            I am so glad you know thousands of immigrants and you are intimately aware of their finances.

            1. Well you seem to think that the experiences of one immigrant generalizes to a population of millions…

              1. Jeff, are you actually trying to say illegals don’t commit mass amounts of social security fraud?

              2. Chem: So does lying that you know thousands of immigrants.

          3. Chipper doesn’t know any immigrants on welfare? Well fuck! That’s just the final word, isn’t it? Open borders for all, because Chipper says so!

      2. Yes, every single person from the other side of an imaginary line has exactly the same ideas about everything, and they’re all out to get you.

        Which is why I go out every morning with a spray can and mark the property line. All you others with your pet causes can fuck off.

        Fuck You. Cut Spending.

      3. Pro-life Christian voters seem disproportionately concerned with stopping pro-life Christian immigrants at the southern border. Where’s the call for a border wall on the northern border? Where’s the call for border walls on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts?

  4. >>>anti-immigration animus is fast becoming the main organizing principle of the Grand Old Party

    i have doubts this is a mainstream thing.

    1. It’s not. The wall isn’t going to happen, and the rank and file of the GOP doesn’t really care about it. Trump was elected for one overriding reason: he’s not Hillary Clinton. Everything else is noise.

      -jcr

      1. “Trump was elected for one overriding reason: he’s not Hillary Clinton. Everything else is noise.”

        But Trump won the Republican primary in large part because of his over-the-top anti-immigrant positions.

        1. Yes, the massively disproportionate level of media attention Trump received had nothing to do with his wining the primary.

          1. And let’s not try to pretend that it was GOP stalwarts voting in the states that gave Trump the Presidency.

            No those were otherwise ‘moderate’ Democrats and ‘swing voters’ who broke in favor of Trumps anti-illegal immigration rhetoric.

            You know, the people who if they break for the Democrat are otherwise lionized as the salt of the Earth and the Heart of the nation…

            1. No no Thomas. Those people have always been and will always be Republicans.

              It’s not like Democrats spent 8 years pissing them off and shoving them away.

            2. Let’s not forget the true-blue demoncraps, that knew HiLIARy was a lock, so they voted in the open primary for the Republican they thought was a sure loser.

        2. “But Trump won the Republican primary in large part because of his over-the-top anti-immigrant positions.”

          Yeah, enforcing existing immigration law and increasing physical security at the border, which is a massive trouble area for illegal crossing are ‘over the top anti-immigration positions’.

          When you say it like that, it just shows you’re the nut bar outlier. Not Trump. By the way, he won the general election itoo n part because of those same ‘over the top’ positions.

      2. >>>not Hillary Clinton

        every morning is lovelier because…

      3. Bullshit. The polling shows about 80% of Americans agree with Trump on the border and immigration in general. So no, not being Hillary wasn’t;t the main reason for all his votes.

        1. 80% ? I know exactly where that number came from and it stinks to high heaven.

  5. They’re taking our welfare from us.

  6. Once again there is a difference between illegal and legal but laws apparently don’t matter at Reason

    1. Laws matter. Legislation not so much.
      The differences between ‘legal’ and ‘illegal’ immigration are largely imaginary. The legislative attempts to ‘control’ immigration have never been well-motivated, well-informed, or “for the benefit of the republic.”

      1. “Laws matter. Legislation not so much.”

        I have seldom read a more illogical, inane, dare I say unintelligible sentence. Just a hint: how are laws made?

        1. Shirley might be referring to natural law – the immutable aspects of our human condition that predispose us to certain forms of living, Drawing a distinction between valid legislation that recognizes this fundament and invalid legislation that runs against it.

          But I strongly doubt it.

    2. Morality matters. Laws, not so much.

      1. and morality is just someones opinion that often changes, just like laws

        1. The law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual, as Jefferson said.

    3. Once again there is a difference between illegal and legal but laws apparently don’t matter at Reason

      I hear this shit all the time from nativist Goopers. As if LEGAL immigration actually exists in any meaningful sense. It doesn’t.

      Two-thirds of legal immigration is pure ‘family reunification’. The waiting list for the two countries with significant numbers of potential legal immigrants (Mexico and Phillippines) is 18 years. That’s an entire generation – so there is no meaningful legal immigration. someone from those countries either crosses the border illegally – or they will die waiting in line.

      The other third of legal immigration is employment-based. That is roughly a ‘four year’ wait in theory. But in practice, unless the foreigner has existing connections with an H1/2 employer, the waiting list is actually forever. This category is now a pure cronyist scam. They hire the H1/2’s – and then fill pretty much all the E1/2’s that then become available over the next four years.

      1. thats a lie I know many who have come here within just a few years and are legally here while they are processed . its the length of the process that is insane and there is no reason why they can’t be processed within a two year max time frame but we are talking government here and they love their buracracy.

        1. It’s not a lie. There are almost no employment-based (EB’s) green cards except for those who are already here on an H (which is a temporary work visa). Maybe that’s what is confusing you. The ‘E’ pipeline is not some separate source of legal immigration. It is simply the end-result of the H-granting cronies. Every year, there are roughly 160,000 H visas (with a duration of three years extendable to six) granted – and 140,000 EB green cards (with a four-year wait list) granted. the H’s fill up the pipeline entirely.

          This is all just a fucking game. For any skilled immigrant who doesn’t already have employment connections in the H-using industries, there is roughly zero chance of legally immigrating. And the legal number of unskilled immigrants is limited to 10,000/year (all of which are granted to employers who have union connections in order to get the ‘labor certification’ approved)

          1. The H1-B is the main route to getting an employment visa, athough it’s not true that ALL of the H1-Bs are taken up by a few industries. There’s a waiting list and anyone can apply for one. The problem is that it’s so hard to get an E visa that you pretty much can’t do it unless you are allowed to work here during the years you have to wait for one. No employer would be crazy enough to sponsor you if you can’t start working for five years.

            1. The problem is that it’s so hard to get an E visa that you pretty much can’t do it unless you are allowed to work here during the years you have to wait for one.

              Technically, the E green card is driven by the employer who is doing the sponsoring not by the migrant. That’s why it has been captured by the employers who get the H visa for that person – and then get the EB card for that person. We don’t have a skills-based system. We have an employment-based system. The reward for the employers who coopt that system is a few years of (basically) indentured servitude and distortions of the labor market. They get employees who won’t raise a stink about anything because if they get fired, they lose their H visa and the sponsoring employer for the EB card. And they can’t look for another job either because their H visa depends on their current employer.

              The entire H/E system is ugly as hell and is as anti-libertarian and anti-free market as an economic policy can get. And it’s a real shame IMO that, in defending that system, libertarians have simply become the useful idiots of those who actually do understand that it is a system of govt-sanctioned indentured servitude.

              1. ^^ The H-visa game is the government giving corporate welfare licenses to hire people who can’t change jobs for fear of getting kicked out. Government sponsored cheaper labor. These are people who can’t use the free market to work where they can and get paid what they can per supply and demand.

      2. JFree, the moment you said ‘nativist goopers’ (did you mean goobers?), I stopped reading and decided you are deranged on this subject and have zero credibility on anything related to immigration. It also makes me think you’re an ‘open borders nutcase’.

        Maybe you should try and make a logical argument without immediately treating any contrary position as retarded.

        1. I’m not an open borders guy. I just lose all patience with those who assert that legal migration is possible without cronyist connections. It’s not. All legal migration is the consequence of either a)an employer deciding who they want here in the US or b)a family deciding that they want their adult sons/daughters here in the US. Other than that it is the ‘diversity’ lottery – 50,000 per year with none given to countries that already send immigrants via the family or employment track.

      3. 1.6 million become either citizens or legal residents each year.
        If there is a long wait it is because so many want to come.
        The “solution” of opening up the borders, will flood the country with too many people for the infrastructure to be able to support. All those who paid for it will be severely impacted.

        1. 1.6 million become either citizens or legal residents each year.

          You are double-counting the pipeline. Each year about 600,000-750,000 become naturalized citizens. Those are almost entirely people who got permanent residency more than five years previously. Call that the end of the pipeline. Each year 700,000 get permanent residency (2/3 family, 1/4 employment, rest misc). Call that the beginning of the pipeline (except that the employment piece has an earlier entry – H – for temporary residency that then turns into permanent).

          I have no problem discussing whether 700k per year pipeline capacity is too much or too little or too rigged. I have a big problem when someone thinks that if they put 2 eggs into a pan and scrambled those 2 eggs and then ate those 2 eggs, that they actually ate 4 or 6 eggs.

          1. JFree – ” As if LEGAL immigration actually exists in any meaningful sense. It doesn’t.”

            JFree – “Each year about 600,000-750,000 become naturalized citizens. ”

            Your own statements clearly contradict each other. A rational person can’t call an additional 600-750K people meaningless.

            1. The raw number is less important than WHO gets entrance. Yes if you are a close blood relative – or have an employment connection with a multinational, then legal entrance is relatively easy (though it still involves multi-year wait).

              If you don’t have those connections (and prob 95% of the rest of the world doesn’t have those connections – and didn’t have those connections in the 19th century either), then legal migration simply doesn’t exist. It’s not a matter of screening or selecting people who really have skills to offer or want to be American. It’s that there is no legal category for a migrant without those connections. Legal immigration now is purely cronyist and rigged. THAT is my point.

        2. …opening up the borders, will flood the country with too many people for the infrastructure to be able to support.

          Yeah, imagine the chaos caused by all those new customers, renters, and willing workers. How will the free market ever adapt?

  7. Didn’t Shikha write this exact same article already last week? She’s giving some of our regular aspies a run for their obsessive money.

  8. Since when was the GOP the party of small government? That train derailed four decades ago.

    1. Yeah, they aren’t. They are the party of “moralistic” government. And I don’t mean Jerry Falwell-type Christian morality. They think government benefits should be bestowed on those who are morally “worthy” on some level. So decent patriotic hard-working Muricans – big government for them! But foreigners, libruls, pointy headed professors – screw them.

      1. There are fiscal conservative Republicans but they get out-propaganda(ed) by military/police/prison/drug warrior industrial complex types.

        1. And how did Rand Paul do in the Republican primaries again?

          Who was it who actually won again – a blowhard ignoramus whose signature issue was denigrating Mexicans? THAT is the animating principle behind the Republican Party now. Know-nothing nationalism that trash talks foreigners.

          1. Pretty much.

          2. Trump fits right in with the blowhard ignoramuses who denigrate Americans and trash talk Americans who are currently in politics.

            Rand Paul is not popular among establishment Republicans. I think Rand Paul would do better during votes if he was LP. More money in being a Republican though.

          3. Jeff, everything you just said is horseshit. In fact, you sound just like Nancy Pelosi with that statement. In both its shrillness, and its inaccurate distortion. Especially since our sovereign borders ARE important, and their defense is actually something laid out in the constitution. Something I thought libertarians believed in.

            1. Maybe he should have listened to who was doing the most talking about what needed to be more “moral”.
              Hint, his initials were BS.

          4. Rand Paul was reelected handily in Kentucky.

      2. They think government benefits should be bestowed on those who are morally “worthy” on some level. So decent patriotic hard-working Muricans – big government for them! But foreigners, libruls, pointy headed professors – screw them.

        And when one of their own is unable to be a hardworking murican for whatever reason, as long as they repent and ask forgiveness they don’t get lumped in with all those “others” that don’t get that benefit of the doubt, never mind if they don’t change their behavior.

      3. The GOP certainly is moralistic. But that provides zero distinction from the Democrat party, which is equally if not more moralistic in their own way.

        1. There are a few fiscal conservatives in the GOP. None in the Democratic Party.

          I agree with the rest.

        2. Oh I agree with that.

        3. Dems are better on individual freedom, smaller military, and foreign interaction. Republicans are slightly better on taxes and spending (at least traditionally) .

    2. Actually, that train derailed at the Civil War.

  9. “The Wall” is a bad idea. Ronald Reagan and HW Bush wanted a work visa program, and at the time it was Democrats that wanted a wall. And I’m sure it won’t be built. And in 20 years, it will be the Democrats that again want a wall, and the Republicans will oppose it.

    It’s just a football that gets tossed back and forth, mostly to distract and inflame people.

    Also, it should be obvious that walls work both ways. Are we inside the prison, or outside of it? Can’t really tell if you’re walled in, and have to have ‘papers’ to do much more than breathe.

    1. “I’m not locked in here with you. You’re locked in here with ME.”

    2. The Wall is the political diversion. Both parties want to keep the legal immigration system completely cronyist – and both establishments want to ensure that the legal system remains broken so the serfs can be kept in line.

  10. misnamed Hose Freedom Caucus

    You can say that again.

    1. Isn’t that Crusty’s anti-pants PAC?

      1. He likes saying caucus. It makes him feel naughty.

        1. You laugh, but someday you will feel overwhelmed by the dominant power of my powerful caucus.

          1. Put a sock on it, Crusty.

      2. Crusty. The new Warty sans Doomcock.

  11. … is throwing away the bedrock fiscal and economic principles that have guided his party for at least the last three decades.

    ? The GOP’s actions haven’t matched their words for even longer than the last three decades. So I’m not sure what “bedrock principles” she is referring to.

    1. The only “principles” politicians hold to are “get elected, get funded, repeat”. Everything is done in light of that ‘principle’.

      1. Not necessarily a bad thing. Ideally, the “get elected” part is making the country a better place for the most amount of people – and voters being savvy enough to recognize it.

    2. The bedrock GOP principles are keep funding the military and talk about tax cuts.

  12. Does Reason love illegal immigrants more than small government?

  13. “In President Trump’s America, anti-illegal immigration animus is fast becoming the main organizing principle of the Grand Old Party. Not fiscal responsibility. Not the free market. Anti-illegal immigrant fever.”
    FTFY

    Yeah, people flooding into the USA for our excellent welfare state is not going to hurt the USA at all.

    1. Oh knock it off. You’re not fooling anyone. The vast majority of the arguments that the border restrictionists levy against illegal immigration are just as applicable to legal immigration. Take your own argument. If you really are concerned that illegal immigrants will be a drain on the welfare state, why is this not an argument as well for restricting *legal* immigration? Wouldn’t admitting ANYONE into this country, legally or not, represent a new potential drain on the welfare state?

      The claim that the border restrictionists are really just interested in “enforcing the law” is a motte-and-bailey tactic, plain and simple. They hide behind deference to the rule of law – their fake argument – in order to further their real position, opposition to all immigration.

      1. f you really are concerned that illegal immigrants will be a drain on the welfare state, why is this not an argument as well for restricting *legal* immigration?

        Well, it is an argument against uncontrolled legal immigration, but not against, say, a Canadian-type system

      2. Here are the arguments against illegal immigrants.

        Note, these are ALL the arguments, not a ‘sampling’, not a biased selection of them, here are ALL the arguments against illegal immigrants—

        They come here illegally

        That is it. That is all. Everything else is tangential to that.

        1. “Good people don’t use milk of the poppy.”

        2. This is bullshit and you know it.

          #1: Every Republican candidate in 2016 (with the possible exception of Jeb Bush, who never had much of a chance anyway) was opposed to illegal immigration. Every single one talked about the rule of law and deporting those who had broken the law. But it was TRUMP who took the rhetoric up to eleventy. He not only did all of the above, but he shamelessly called them rapists and murderers and accused them of stealing our jobs and otherwise denigrated them of being horrible bad people (with the occasional throwaway line of “oh perhaps some of them might be barely tolerable”). And he was rewarded for that. Because he was in tune with what Republican voters were thinking on the issue. They don’t want illegals deported merely because they have broken the law. They want illegals deported because in their view they are HORRIBLE PEOPLE WHO DON’T BELONG HERE. Big difference.

          1. #2: Consider: It is only on the issue of illegal immigration that border restrictionists pose as rule-of-law absolutists. On *every other issue*, these same people who claim to value the sanctity of the rule of law are willing to let scofflaws get away with illegal behavior because (a) they view the law itself is wrong, (b) they understand excessive enforcement of the law is a cure worse than the disease, or (c) they are just partisans on the issue. Look at how the right has warmed up to people like Julian Assange. On one day Assange is a traitor, on the next day he is a hero for leaking Hillary’s emails. So it is hard for me to take seriously claims of absolute loyalty to the rule of law when these same people are complete hypocrites on every other issue. Which suggests that they really aren’t rule-of-law absolutists on any issue, including illegal immigration, and favor deporting illegals for a much broader reason than simply because they’ve broken the law.

            1. And those broader reasons that they favor deporting illegals include reasons of culture and economics. That they are “stealing our jobs” and “turning USA into Venezuela”. Which by the way apply to every other class of immigration. From an employment point of view, what difference does it make if the Mexican day laborer is here legally or illegally? Either way, that same person is “stealing an American’s job”, right? And what difference does it make if the supposed Hugo Chavez-supporting Mexican is here legally or illegally? The illegal can’t vote in our elections (except according to Trump, of course), so from that point of view, it’s even WORSE to let the supposed socialism-loving Mexicans in *legally*.

              1. So by their own words and actions, the border restrictionists have outed themselves as being opposed in a much broader sense to immigration, and not merely just interested in enforcing the law. Ask them if they would favor making DACA permanent via the proper legislative process. They will likely say no. Ask them if they would favor ending birthright citizenship. They will likely say yes, even if the question of birthright citizenship has been settled law for 100 years. What happened to respect for the rule of law now? Now maybe you are that rare exception who really is a principled rule-of-law absolutist. But all the other ones I have encountered are not.

                1. Birthright citizenship hasn’t been settled, except for children born of legal alien residents.
                  The subject of illegal invaders’ children hasn’t been adjudicated.

          2. See politicians have been SAYING they are against illegal immigration but don’t do much about it.

            Trump is [period] This is one reason he was elected.

            1. Before the election, what was Trump’s record on illegal immigration? Oh right, he was fined for using illegal labor to build one of his hotels in NYC, and he uses H2-B visa holders (not illegal, but often exploited) for his hotels in Florida. So Trump’s RECORD is worse than even Rubio’s was. At least with Rubio, even if his 2013 bill did represent “amnesty” by some definition of the word, at least Rubio never personally profited from illegal labor himself. By far, Ted Cruz had the strongest *record* on illegal immigration from a Republican point of view. But Ted Cruz didn’t trash talk Mexicans, so he lost.

              1. Trump didn’t trash talk Mexicans either, as far as I know.

              2. Chem: How do expect average people to abide by all complex laws when there are so many, ineffectual and conflicting?

                Do you break the law every day? Yes
                Do I break the law every day? Yes.

                The point is immigration laws are a mess because they were designed to be that way plus…Congress.

                Trump was a civilian and evidently broke immigration law. He’s a hypocrite, you’re a hypocrite.

                You are trying to make the argument that Trump should not fix immigration because he violated outrageously complex immigration laws.

        3. This is an incredibly stupid comment. If it weren’t, they’d be right, just legalize them all and everything would be fine.

      3. chemjeff|7.24.17 @ 11:01AM|#
        Oh knock it off. You’re not fooling anyone. The vast majority of the arguments that the border restrictionists levy against illegal immigration are just as applicable to legal immigration. Take your own argument. If you really are concerned that illegal immigrants will be a drain on the welfare state, why is this not an argument as well for restricting *legal* immigration? Wouldn’t admitting ANYONE into this country, legally or not, represent a new potential drain on the welfare state?
        The claim that the border restrictionists are really just interested in “enforcing the law” is a motte-and-bailey tactic, plain and simple. They hide behind deference to the rule of law – their fake argument – in order to further their real position, opposition to all immigration.

        Oh knock it off. You are never fooling anyone. You want open borders and do not any accountability for what non-Americans do that hurts America. We all know the benefits of legal immigration.

        I am for eliminating illegal immigrants and limiting regular immigration. I am for increasing work visas and visitor visas.

        The reason, nobody takes you seriously is because your call Rule of Law a fake argument. The Constitution enumerates immigration/naturalization responsibility to the government.

        1. “The reason, nobody takes you seriously is because your call Rule of Law a fake argument.”

          No, the Rule of Law argument is *A* real argument. It is just not YOUR real argument. It is the motte in the Motte and Bailey tactic.

          1. Yes, Chemjeff. I put a motte and bailey in your head to confuse you.

            Rule of law is real and should be enforced for everything. Illegal immigration is *illegal* and therefore should be stopped.

            Additionally, there are too many federal laws and most of those need to be repealed.

            You want to open the immigration flood gates, which is not supported by most Americans.

    2. Yeah and the left loves free markets, they just dont like the ILLEGALS who dont want to follow all the rules wisely constructed by our infallible government

    3. Most don’t flood here for welfare. If I could work in Canada for $500,000 a year doing the same work that pays $25,000 a year here I’d be an illeagal immigrant in Canada.

  14. No Shikha, just you.

    Reason, the CNN of libertarianism.

      1. I think if you run with RNN it may work. mho.

  15. Yeah, the Republican Party is quickly turning into the National Front of this country. Big-government statists who hate foreigners.

    1. According to the left, the Republicans also hate safe spaces, non-whities, non-hate speech, freedom, etc.

    2. It’s hard to determine the Republican immigration stance from news articles. One article, like this one, will imply the Republicans hate most, if not all, foreigners, another article will say that Republicans want as many legal and illegal immigrants so they can exploit them at their uber-greedy corporations. So which is it?

      1. Personally I think it’s that the Republican VOTERS are generally afraid of foreigners and want to keep them out, legal or not, while the Republican DONORS tend to like open borders more.

        1. Could be, but isn’t this article describing the donors via the senators? I’ve lived in several parts of Texas, currently a red state, and most of the self proclaimed Republicans seem to be fine with legal immigrants. Maybe its from the state’s history or its general independent, live and let live demeanor but I don’t find a fear of immigrants pervasive. I know it’s anecdotal but that’s been my experience. In fact, the people I’ve met that had the biggest gripe with illegal immigrants were a few hispanic employees I had in Laredo and Del Rio (border cities).

          1. I think Texas is a bit of a unique case because Mexican and Texan identity are much closer together than, say, Pennsylvanian identity. Mexicans really are neighbors to Texans, but they are strangers to be feared elsewhere.

            1. Lefties fear Mexicans, black people and free white people.

              The Democratic Party is the party of slavery after all.

      2. The media is lefty, so that would explain why conservative opinions are misrepresented most of the time.

        1. Yeah, right.

          Not in this case. Read Cotton’s reasons for curving LEGAL immigration by HALF by 2027. A worse and economically-illiterate reason could not be conceived by living human.

          1. Limiting legal immigration by 50% by 2027 IS THE WORST THINGS CONCEIVED BY HUMANS?

            Really? People have clearly not told to you that its not the worst thing. We don’t need any immigration to be just fine as a country.

            Why do we have to have floods of immigrants? Why not just a few hundred immigrants each year?

            1. Why not just a few hundred immigrants each year?

              You might want to talk to Mr. Burns about that one…

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c91usT4P1u0

  16. “The Cotton bill would slash legal immigration in half by 2027 because he feels it’s the government’s duty to protect American workers from too much labor competition. So much for limiting the size and scope of government!”
    It IS the enumerated role of our government to regulate immigration. But hey, spin your desire for open borders how ever you want.

    1. You’re wasting your breath on most of these retarded closet progs. They’re just open borders dips hits circle jerking each other over their insane bullshit theories about how flooding the country with massive amounts of low education, low skilled illegal labor is great for American workers. Who they clearly don’t give a fuck about.

      If any of these idiots are really libertarian, it just shows why the movement has so much difficulty getting any traction. Sadly.

      1. They’re not Libertarians because they clearly hate the rule of law.

        They want to circumvent current law rather than getting enough support to change immigration law. Lefties know that their socialist agendas are not supported by the majority of Americans so they have to incrementally sneak them in as policy.

        Overly complex law is a typical tactic. If the law is confusing and most people cannot clearly see what is legal and illegal, you need lawyers and judges to decide what the law says. *Poof* unelected minority dictating policy.

  17. The GOP hates big government. REALLY. The party of Dictator Lincoln. The original party of the Progressive movement. The party of multinational Corporations control of every aspect of our lives. Your staff needs to be careful how they word the headers of their article lest people begin to think you are no longer a serious news source.

  18. I saw the headline and snippet and immediately knew who it was.

    1. Easy since she already posted this a week or so ago

  19. The Chairman of the misnamed Hose Freedom Caucus…

    Nope, it’s named perfectly.

  20. I don’t know what everyone’s so worried about. The world over, white people have demonstrated a remarkable ability to remain in charge, oppressing everyone else, even as a small minority.

    1. Re: Tony,

      Please stop talking. You’re not helping at all.

      1. Tony is doing a great job of showing how little contrast you closet progs have with him on this issue. So good for him.

        1. Some lefties just say the truth about their racism and little socialist agendas. Other lefties are schooled in narratives to push.

          Look for the reasons behind the agendas.

          Why do lefties want to open the flood gates for immigration? Why is ~330 people in American not enough people?

          1. You’re right. We have enough people. Plus we already have a bunch of entitlement-seeking teat-sucking do-nothing whiners here already.

            So my modest proposal is that for every person who is born that we kill an old person. It also reduces the Social Security and Medicare liability and the public debt and the voting pressure for yet more spending on nonsense.

            1. You’re on the right track. Instead of old people, get rid of the truly unproductive: the progtard. In addition to killing them off to make room for the young, we can trade them to other nations in exchange for new immigrants. Especially hot chicks.

              Everyone wins!

  21. anti-immigration animus

    Enough about Canada.

  22. Since when was the GOP the party of small government?

    They never really were. They were founded as the party of mercantilism and remain that to this day. The Democrat party was the small gov’t party back when it was Jefferson’s party. Unfortunately, it was co-opted/conquered by socialists.

  23. The Cotton bill would slash legal immigration in half by 2027 because he feels it’s the government’s duty to protect American workers from too much labor competition. So much for limiting the size and scope of government!

    Actually, after reading the link that was provided in the article, the Cotton bill would shift our legal immigration away from an expanded family reunification system (where someone admitted legally can bring in members of their extended family beyond their spouse and children) to a merit-based system (where we admit immigrants based on their skills and ability to earn a living without going on public assistance). You know, like most of the developed world including that Trumpian dystopia Canada does.

    I’m not sure how changing our immigration policy so that we give preference to those with job skills and the ability to earn a living constitutes “protect[ing] American workers from too much labor competition.”

    1. Re: TW,

      You know, like most of the developed world including that Trumpian dystopia Canada does.

      Canada also allows immigration by immediate family sponsorship. Their merit-based immigration process is much LESS restrictive than the equivalent process in the US.

      You may want to believe that Cotton’s intentions are pure but they’re based entirely on economically-ignorant premises and assumptions. The worst of all is the premise that the government is supposed to protect “American workers” from competition. That’s akin to Central Economic Planning.

      1. “Their merit-based immigration process is much LESS restrictive than the equivalent process in the US.”

        I doubt it, and even if it is, we admit more immigrants for family reunification than for economic reasons. The number of people admitted here on employment related reasons make up 14% of the admitted group. In Canada that’s like 60%.

        If you can’t give their economy something, you probably ain’t getting in Canada. Consequently you’ll have less of a chance to stay in Canada through family connection. There are 20 cousins on my dad’s side alone living in this country. We have maybe 4 cousins living in Canada.

        There’s a reason we have 100 times more immigrants in this country than Canada. You won’t get much if you’re illegal in Canada, so there’s that.

        1. There’s a reason we have 100 times more immigrants in this country than Canada.

          Apparently it’s because Americans are crappy at math. No surprise there.

          Canada lets in 300,000 legal immigrants (0.8% of population) per year. The US lets in 700,000 legal immigrants (0.2% of population) per year. Of those, Canada has about 170,000 who come in based on their skills. We have zero – though we do have 170,000 indentured servants who arrive for ’employment-based’ stuff sponsored by employers who vouch for their skills. Note – the same exact number – but Canada’s system enhances freedom where ours rewards cronyism/corruption. The family-based numbers are 85,000 (Canada) v 480,000 (US) – which is again a higher % of population than the US.

          Canada has a total of 6.8 million ‘foreign-born’ (a reasonable proxy for lifetime migration) – 19% of its population. The US has a total of 41.4 million ‘foreign-born’ – 13% of population.

  24. OK, can we, just for a moment, pretend that the issue is a little more complicated that “hate Immigrants” vs “love immigrants”?

    Mexico is a failed State. It has been one degree sort another of a failed State for some decades now. In consequence, what comes across its borders is a little more complicated than simply ‘immigrants’.

    Will anything really stop all the chaos spilling across the border? Probably not. OTOH, the voters are clearly sick to the teeth of what is actually being done, and all things considered, who can blame them? They want a wall. It seems likely that they want a wall primarily because a bunch of people they dislike and distrust keep telling them in a high-hat voice that they shouldn’t want a wall. Compared to some things the government could be doing, building a wall is fairly harmless.

    The Republicans do not hate immigrants OR big government. Like all other politicians, they love telling other people what to do, and getting reelected. And so they will do whatever they can that appears likely to allow them to do both.

    Like build that frickin’ wall.

    1. Exactly. If Republicans hated foreigners so much, we would build a wall along with Canada too.

      We don’t have a huge problem with Canada. We do with Mexico.

      Walls only SLOW people down not stop them. Americans want to SLOW down illegal immigration.

      1. It’s because culturally, Canada isn’t all that foreign. But Mexico and places further south are an entirely different universe. Canada’s government may be more socialist than Mexico’s is, but you will never hear border restrictionists complain about “importing Canadians to turn USA into a socialist hellhole”. It is about cultural dissimilarity, not “rule of law”.

        1. Says you. There’s a decidedly more socialist hellhole already in the US with roughly the population of Canada that most of us wouldn’t mind seceding.

          It’s got little to do with cultural dissimilarity or the cultural dissimilarity is thoroughly intertwined with economic considerations.

          In any event, Canada seems to love their brown southerners even less than Americans do.

          1. Canada has the USA to absorb the brown masses instead of them flooding across the Great White North border.

            Its a case of easy to say that when America is protecting you from the hordes.

      2. Re: loveconstitution1789,

        We don’t have a huge problem with Canada. We do with Mexico.

        What’s with this “we” business, Kemosabe?

        Americans want to SLOW down illegal immigration.

        That’s highly debatable, but one thing is true: Trumpistas have been lying all along about not having a problem with legal immigration. They were called out for their hypocrisy long ago; the evidence is piling on that they were never serious about allowing more legal immigration: “Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), both of whom have worked with the White House and floated plans to sacrifice traditional conservative economic principles to promote a harsh immigration agenda.”

        What Shikha is not mentioning but was mentioned in The Daily Caller is that both Meadows and Cotton are looking at the “economic consequences of a more relaxed immigration process”. Which means: they don’t want immigrants – PERIOD.

        1. Why don’t you go back to HuffPo, or Slate, or whatever progtard rock you crawled out from you lying bigot?

    2. Re: C. S. P. Schofield,

      OK, can we, just for a moment, pretend that the issue is a little more complicated that “hate Immigrants” vs “love immigrants”?

      It’s not that complicated. You just have to peruse the comments section of the Daily Caller, Breitbart and The Blaze to understand that the issue is THAT simple and that Trumpistas really DO hate immigrants.

      Mexico is a failed State.

      Liar.

      1. We all know Mexico is a 1st World nation of unparalleled rule of law, property rights, and freedoms.

      2. Liar? How? Please demonstrate some way in which the Mexican State actually functions.

        It isn’t the drug trade, per se, that bothers me. Or the ‘human trafficking’, which panic is about 2/3rds White Slavery Panic with the serial numbers filed off, and 1/3 smuggling people across the border. It’s the general sense I get that Mexico is only doing better than Venezuela because the Mexican government lacks the actual ability to affect much, and consequently can’t actively make things WORSE.

        1. Contd.

          I think the core issue is actually that politicians of both major parties have been telling American voters ‘Nope, sorry, you want the wrong this on immigration’ for too goddamn long. So, with Trump, they have said (on this and other issues) ‘Fuck you. We don’t work for you, you work for us. Now, do as you’re fricking TOLD.’

          All kinds of elaborate plans for ‘dealing with immigration’ have run aground on either partisan politics, or political disinclination to change the status quo for ideological reasons, or what have you. The voters have said, again and again, that they want a wall, or a fence, or something of the kind. They have said again and again that they want the rules enforced and illegals thrown out and kept out.

          In terms of justice they may be wrong. They probably are. But their wants have been ignored too goddamned long by people who make it too clear that They Know Better. That is a losing proposition, long term, in a representative government. Sooner or later the pee-pul (bless their black hearts) are going to, by God, elect somebody who will do what they want.

          It’s not as if setting immigration policy isn’t recognized as a legitimate government power by the Constitution.

          So, let the wall be built. It will either fail, or it won’t. But by TRYING it we will, just maybe, be able to move beyond the idea. Right now the voters appear to be disinclined to be lectured on the subject.

        2. Mexico isn’t like Venezuela because the former gets its economy propped up by all the money that Mexicans send south of the border from the good old US of A.

  25. RE: The GOP Died at the Border Wall
    The Republican Party hates immigrants more than it hates big government.

    The GOP.
    The socialist lite party.

  26. The Cotton bill would slash legal immigration in half by 2027 because he feels it’s the government’s duty to protect American workers from too much labor competition. So much for limiting the size and scope of government!

    Leave that aside – it’s much worse. What Cotton proposes is nothing less than Central Economic Planning. If Cotton was serious about the reason behind his proposal to curb legal immigration, he would realize that he should also advocate for mass sterilization so that no new human individuals are born into this world that will compete, in the near future, with already living American workers.

    By the way, so much for the claim from Trumpistas that they only have a problem with “illegal” immigration. Cotton’s proposal is clear indication that Trumpistas were against immigration per se from the very beginning, just not very forthcoming about it.

    1. So what if legal immigration was limited by 50%?

      Why do lefties want the flood gates open for immigration into the USA?

      1. Because it will hasten their goal – destruction of what is America.

  27. Another shit article by this stupid commie bitch.

  28. It’s not the Republican at fault it’s the Democrats who is to blame for this crisis they didn’t inforce the immigration laws of this country that’s why every one think they came just come across the border un documented now that’s it’s out of control it’s the president who has to deal with this issue Republican should always stay in charge make this country great again

  29. Exactly how is Trump anti-immigration? Trump is only enforcing the laws that are already on the books. Trump did not make these laws, congress passed the immigration laws years ago. Illegal aliens coming into the US without permission is illegal, or do you not believe in our laws?

  30. it is sad what it has come to

  31. Like pot, this is not the hill for Libertarians to die on. Preventing violent criminals and enemies from sneaking in is one thing the govt is actually supposed to be doing and spending on. Pick an issue that people can actually agree with you on.

    1. This is the mind-numbingly retarded part of the whole discussion.

      Cotton may be a foaming-at-the-mouth racist, but his proposition is *exactly* the one the libertarians should understand if not hold. Firewall the hell out of the free shit machine or shut it the fuck down. If Republicans have exposed themselves as rabid racist its because their opponents have openly revealed themselves to be naked one-worlder redistributionists.

      If he were talking about defending free speech rights on campus, Reason would be (possibly through gritted teeth) acknowledging that he has a constitutionally-guaranteed right to say what he has to say. But, because cultural libertarianism means you only speak Hayek when it’s convenient, the magazine is shooting him down at every turn rather than taking him up on his offer to not build a wall *and* shut down the government. They’re going to fuck the GOP over even if it kills them.

  32. Everytime I read an article from this lady I feel like she meant to submit it to Huffpost and it got sent here by accident.

    1. It should tell you a lot (all of it bad) that HuffPost and Reason are in lockstep on immigration.

  33. Just this writers name reeks of OPEN BORDERS ANARCHIST…..

  34. The Republican Party no longer has any bedrock principles. They are swayed by an ever vanishing base that demands action no matter the cost. This is the wall that was too expensive for the US government to build (no data was provided when it was first proposed) so the liar in chief said Mexico would pay for it- something no one believed but which still won applause. Now that reality has to be faced, the Republicans can’t admit their candidate lied based on no knowledge so they are demanding that the US pay for the wall, even though it contradicts their small government philospohy and will probably lead to further cuts in the safety net while doing nothing to halt illegal immigraqtion, gang activity or drug smuggling- its supposed goals. The cayotes, gangs and drug lords all have sufficinet funds to avoid crossing the desert into the US. Only the truly desparate and destitute will be kept out.

  35. this comment thread is terrible. What happened?

  36. Why does Reason hate Americans and their freedom?

  37. Why do people continue to confuse immigration with ILLEGAL immigration?
    I suspect their aim is to promote a borderless world with no national sovereignty in the hopes that the planet could enjoy a Kumbaya Star Trek Utopia.
    Surely they can see that such an endeavor would require the implementation of force from an all-powerful State entity in order merge all the differing cultures. Perhaps they have not read their history books concerning the results of all-powerful State manifestations.
    Why not let the inevitable global society evolve naturally via a shared cultural identity through planetary saturation of a free internet with personal communications available for all people? Such a society would far more closely approximate the desired Utopia as it would not be grounded in rule by force. Indeed, such a society would be vastly more favorable to the rights of the individual rather than being tyrannical and State-centric. And the American example of government based on Individual Rights and Liberty, fueled by Capitalism, has proven to be the most productive and innovative system of Civilized Society the world has seen anywhere and anywhen. Of course, it has not been without fault and misstep, but what government has? And what other government has the mechanism for self-correction and succession of power that the American example has shown?

  38. “The Wall” is a bad idea. Ronald Reagan and HW Bush wanted a work visa program, and at the time it was Democrats that wanted a wall. And I’m sure it won’t be built. And in 20 years, it will be the Democrats that again want a wall, and the Republicans will oppose it.

    It’s just a football that gets tossed back and forth, mostly to distract and inflame people.

    Also, it should be obvious that walls work both ways. Are we inside the prison, or outside of it? Can’t really tell if you’re walled in, and have to have ‘papers’ to do much more than breathe.
    My recent post: Zen Titan 2 Review
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  39. Does Reason love illegal immigrants more than small government?
    My recent post: Consultant Funnel – Website Design Review

    1. “Does Reason love illegal immigrants more than small government?”

      Yes, it does.

  40. While work performed abroad to make goods can be thought of as the same as if it were produced by a domestic robot, the same cannot be said to hiring a non-American in the USA to do something. In the age of “The End of Work”, jobs need to be for Americans. No more easy H1B (if someone is really that special, a tax equal to his salary can be assessed, to pay for redistributive social programs).

  41. The GOP opposes illegal immigration more than it opposes Big Government. That is the only sane position. Like it or not illegals bring Big Government with them. A few quotes should make this clear.

    “It’s just obvious you can’t have free immigration and a welfare state” – Milton Friedman

    “There’s also been a lot of fake fog thrown into the the question of whether immigrants pay their way in the welfare state. It’s time for some sanity in this matter as well. The welfare state is specifically designed to transfer resources from higher-income to lower-income persons. Immigrants fall disproportionately into the bottom part of the income distribution. It is downright ridiculous to claim that low-skill immigrants somehow end up being net contributors into the public treasury.” – George Borjas (America’s leading immigration economist)

    One often-heard justification for ignoring that contradiction (the welfare state vs. Open Borders) is that “it’s better to build a wall around the welfare state than build a wall around the country.” My reaction to that statement has always been: Which parallel universe are these people living in? – George Borjas (America’s leading immigration economist)

    The wall might cost $20 billion ($7 billion based on the highly successful Israeli experience). It will save $ trillions of dollars. How many investments offer a 5000%+ ROI?

  42. “Not fiscal responsibility. Not the free market. Anti-immigrant fever.”

    Importing welfare-dependent immigrants is fiscally responsible? Fake news at its best.

    The sad truth is that Reason has ceased to be a libertarian/limited government advocate. In the real world, our nation can have limited government, or it can have Open Borders. It can not have both.

    Reason has chosen Open Borders over limited government. Just the facts.

  43. Liberal tourists travel to new foreign places and local ones, to see traditional sights and sites, and taste traditional foods, and learn traditional customs, and buy traditional costumes and hats to bring home; traditions which their local conservatives kept alive. Conservative tourists go to visit their own family birthplaces and do the same.
    Conservatives, unfortunately, can feel attacked by other conservatives because they’re conserving a different tradition than their own. “The American tradition” of libertarianism is only one of many. So is conquest and empire.
    Capitalists, whether liberal or conservative, need customers, whether liberal or conservative, and if they aren’t good at attracting them, they go out of business.
    The whole situation would be ever so much more humane if we kept politics out of it. Peace and prosperity require that both liberals and conservatives are free to be who they are, without the use of political force. I just wish people would not vote for anything to be done that they wouldn’t do themselves or have done to themselves.

  44. Shhhhhh! Next thing you know they’ll propose putting a bullet train on top of the wall.

  45. While I think the “big, beautiful” wall is just a distraction (although I would have less of a problem with it if it has solar panels all over it), the fact is that without immigration control a state is not a state. My preferred action would be to start levying HARD TIME sentences to folks who employ illegals.

  46. In President Trump’s America, anti-immigration animus is fast becoming the main organizing principle of the Grand Old Party. Not fiscal responsibility. Not the free market. Anti-immigrant fever.

    I’m an immigrant. I went through the immigration process legally. It took two decades. It took thousands of dollars in fees. For those two decades, every time I crossed the border, I had to make sure that every “i” was dotted and every “t” was crossed or I would lose my job, my home, and my friends and be permanently barred from the US. And since my job was a little more responsible than picking apples, I wouldn’t be able to just sneak in over the border again.

    Oh, and if you want to know what party won on opposing illegals, look no further than Bill Clinton. I suspect that’s what most people still believe in the US.

    So, Shikha, as an immigrant, let me put this in no uncertain terms: your statements are reprehensible. You are not an advocate for immigrants, you are an ignorant bigot. Go to hell.

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