Immigration

Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump

The benefits of a backlash

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A big concern with President Donald Trump's attacks on immigration has been that he'll move the Overton window in a restrictionist direction. Trump, the argument goes, will normalize a blood-and-soil nativism on the right while putting Democrats on the defensive, crippling rational and humane reforms.

That indeed seemed to be happening before the midterms. But since then, Democrats have been lashing back.

As Republicans grow more restrictionist, it was easy to imagine that the Democrats might take the path just followed by the Social Democrats in Denmark, who last week clawed their way back to power after a long hiatus by embracing the hardline immigration agenda of the far-right parties. After all, 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has been going around warning that we need to rethink generous immigration policies lest they lead to more reactionary right-wing populism. And it was her husband, President Bill Clinton, who repudiated Ronald Reagan's "amnesty" because unauthorized immigrants, in his telling, were stealing American jobs and mooching off welfare. Indeed, the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act that Clinton signed paved the way for Trump's draconian deportation crackdowns.

But the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates are moving in the opposite direction—with the notable exception of Joe Biden. But Biden is, as my colleague Matt Welch writes, a rusty weather vane who will "creak in the direction of the prevailing winds eventually, apologetically if need be," so it's not hard to imagine that he too will eventually come around.

Around the same time that Trump threatened to impose tariffs on Mexico if it didn't stop the tide of Central American migrants, Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O'Rourke launched a bid to revive his flagging campaign with an immigration reform plan that is an outright repudiation of Trump's border policies. Titled "In Our Own Image," it pledges to immediately end the "needless chaos and confusion at our borders and in our communities" that Trump's "cruel and cynical policies" have sown. A former congressman from El Paso, a border town, O'Rourke pledged to lift Trump's travel ban, stop family separations, limit border detentions to criminal aliens, suspend plans to build the Great Wall of Trump, and channel the wall money into boosting border security infrastructure and hiring more judges to speed up asylum claim processing. He'd also give temporary protected status to "Dreamers"—immigrants who've grown up in America after they were brought here illegally as children—while he worked to pass laws to create a pathway for permanent legalization for all the 11 million unauthorized aliens.

Much of O'Rourke's plan is borrowed from a rival, Julian Castro. But one truly inspired stroke in his proposal is that he would create new visas that churches and communities could use to sponsor refugees, ingeniously neutralizing the objection that these people would burden the public fisc. Nonetheless, Castro's "People First" plan is superior overall, because it makes decriminalization of immigration its centerpiece. To that end, Castro, former mayor of San Antonio, proposes scrapping Section 1325 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which in 1952 made illegal entry a criminal rather than a civil violation, setting the stage for crackdowns in the name of "enforcing the law." Castro wouldn't abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). But he would break it into two agencies, then scale back and reassign its enforcement functions to other agencies within the Department of Justice.

Neither of the two plans is perfect. Both focus on scaling back immigration enforcement and say nary a word about expanding visa options for future workers, the only sure-fire way of diminishing future illegal flows. They'd both create a "Marshall Plan" that pumps billions to stabilize the Northern Triangle countries that migrants are fleeing, as though aid to kleptocracies and other dysfunctional regimes wouldn't just make things worse.

O'Rourke and Castro aren't exactly frontrunners, but they aren't outliers on this issue. At a recent forum in Pasadena, California, Sens. Kamala Harris (who is hardly averse to draconian crackdowns) and Bernie Sanders (who once derided open borders as a Koch conspiracy) both took pains to lambast Trump's harsh enforcement actions. Sanders declared that "America must never be a country where babies are snatched from the arms of their mothers." Harris lamented what the fear of deportation is doing to children in immigrant families. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, the latest to jump in the Democratic fray, talked up his own plan to rebuild the refugee program that Trump has gutted.

The candidates have also been going after those among them who aren't sufficiently immigrant-friendly. Castro and Harris have been attacking former Vice President Joe Biden for helping shepherd the 1996 Clinton law through the Senate. Biden also voted for the Bush-era 2006 Secure Fence Act, which authorized funding for a 700-mile wall and has yet to back away from punishing employers that hire unauthorized immigrants. Meanwhile, Castro, who was President Barack Obama's secretary of housing and urban development, has been obliquely criticizing his former boss for prioritizing health care reform over immigration reform in his first term.

What explains this Democratic romance with immigrants? Part of it is that a general revulsion at Trump's border cruelty—his child separation polices, internment-style camps for Central American asylum seekers, deportations of people who've built lives in America—is generating a pendulum swing in a pro-immigration direction. Indeed, 61 percent of the respondents in an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll last fall said that "immigration helps the United States more than it hurts" and 28 percent said it hurts. In 2005, by contrast, 37 percent said immigration helps more and 53 percent said it hurts. That's a 49-point swing in immigration's favor and Democrats are reflecting that.

But the other reason is that after losing the 2012 presidential elections, Republicans had a choice between two opposite electoral strategies. One was to stop their immigration trash-talk and court Hispanics and other minorities whose presence is growing in a rapidly diversifying America, as the Republican National Committee's autopsy report recommended. ("If Hispanic Americans perceive the GOP nominee or candidate does not want them in the United States, they will not pay attention to our next sentence," it said.) The other was to give up on Hispanics entirely and chase down the white—and some black—voters who Real Clear Politics' Sean Trende's analysis revealed were "missing" in the 2012 election because they were simply not enthused by the choices. But that, he said, would require abandoning "economic libertarianism" and embracing a combination of restrictionism, protectionism, and entitlement spending.

Trump's GOP has obviously embraced the Trende strategy on steroids. The Atlantic's Ron Brownstein points out that Republicans now hold fewer than one in five House seats where the minority population exceeds the national average, and fewer than one in eight seats in districts with more immigrants on average. This leaves the Hispanic terrain wide open for Democrats to pursue by ditching their past flirtations with restrictionism and embracing the cause of immigration whole hog.

Which strategy wins out in the end remains to seen. But the good news for now is that the land of immigrants isn't turning its back on immigrants—it's hunkering down to protect them.

NEXT: We’re From the Government and We’re Here to 'Ghost' Read Your Emails

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  1. Democrats and Shikha support continued illegal immigration because they realize that it will increase their power base:

    Census confirms: 63 percent of ‘non-citizens’ on welfare, 4.6 million households

    Quotes and charts:
    A majority of non-citizens are tapping into welfare programs set up to help poor and ailing Americans, a Census Bureau finding that bolsters President Trump’s concern about immigrants costing the nation.

    In a new analysis of the latest numbers, from 2014, 63 percent of non-citizens are using a welfare program, and it grows to 70 percent for those here 10 years or more, confirming another concern that once immigrants tap into welfare, they don’t get off it.


    While most new legal immigrants (green card holders) are barred from most welfare programs, as are illegal immigrants and temporary visitors, these provisions have only a modest impact on non-citizen household use rates because: 1) most legal immigrants have been in the country long enough to qualify; 2) the bar does not apply to all programs, nor does it always apply to non-citizen children; 3) some states provide welfare to new immigrants on their own; and, most importantly, 4) non-citizens (including illegal immigrants) can receive benefits on behalf of their U.S.-born children who are awarded U.S. citizenship and full welfare eligibility at birth.

    1. Something, something…These non-citizen welfare users also pay taxes.

      Something, something…US citizens also use welfare.

      Something, something…You just hate brown people.

      Did I miss any of the Open Borders Talking Points?

      1. don’t forget about the food trucks

      2. I think that covers all their talking points. And yes, the DumboCRAPS are opposed to anything Trump supports. Fortunately, after the 2020 election, the Republitards will control both houses of congress AND the presidency, and the “never-Trump”ers will be a distinct minority.
        At that point, America will SLAM THE DOOR on criminal invaders and install a merit-based immigration system so anti-American socialist dead weights like Shikha can’t get in.
        With a little luck, deportations will go into high gear and we’ll eject a good chunk of the criminal invaders currently residing in America.

        1. With a little luck, the investigations into DemonCRAP collusion with foreign powers to execute a coup of President Trump will wrap up soon with dozens of DemonCRAPS fighting hard – and futilely – to avoid prison time. That should include a number of the “criminal invaders first” crowd.

      3. Are you talking about immigrants or illegal aliens? They are two very distinct groups. Yes, illegal aliens do pay taxes (so do tourists) but what they pay is a small fraction (about 10%) of what they cost. Yes, US citizens do use welfare but because they do doesn’t give illegal aliens the right to. Always resort to racism when you have nothing worthwhile to say.

        How many illegal aliens are you willing to allow in the country?

    2. Why does non-citizens using welfare generate an outrage that is disproportionate to the scope of the problem?

      I can understand being upset about non-citizens using welfare. I can understand being upset about citizens using welfare. I cannot understand being EXCESSIVELY MORE upset about non-citizens using a much smaller amount of welfare, than compared to the much larger number of citizens using a much larger amount of welfare.

      Is the theft that represents taxation used to fund welfare, any more stealing if that money goes to non-citizens going to welfare?

      Conversely, would welfare be less problematic if only citizens used it?

      1. So your strategy is the Cloward-Piven type, in that by bringing in more people who end up using welfare, we’ll eventually overload the system to the point that it collapses and ushers in the glorious anarchist utopia?

        1. My “strategy” is to assign blame commensurate to the scope of the problem.

          Immigrants using welfare is not any more an act of theft against the taxpayer than non-immigrants using welfare. If 90% of the welfare goes to citizens and 10% goes to non-citizens, why should I get more upset about that 10% than about the 90%?

          1. Flip it around and ask the question from the other direction. Citizens are citizens – they get rights and privileges that non-citizens don’t. But there’s got to be a limit. How many of the impoverished people of other nations should we support? All of them? If not, on what basis do we discriminate between those we do and those we don’t? The ones who manage to get here somehow get that support and everybody else is just shit out of luck?

            1. How many of the impoverished people of other nations should we support?

              If by “we” you mean “the coercive state”, then the answer is “none”.
              But the answer is also “none” when applied to impoverished people of this nation too. And it’s the impoverished people of this nation who are demanding a lot more “support” (i.e. stolen tax dollars) than the impoverished people of other nations. It’s all wrong, but one is more wrong than the other based on the sheer magnitude of the numbers. And yet the outrage goes in exactly the opposite direction. Welfare for native-born citizens get a tut-tutting but welfare for immigrants drives the outrage meter up to eleventy.

            2. Citizens are citizens – they get rights and privileges that non-citizens don’t.

              And this is a fundamental problem with the direction this country has gone. The United States was founded on the notion of inalienable human rights, not special privileges for citizens vs. non-citizens. The former was considered a rationale for the act of treason that was the American Revolution. The latter makes the American Revolution simply (unjustifiable) treason.

              1. The Constitution uses the word “citizen” in numerous places. So the Founding Document of the nation contains special privileges for them.

                1. So the Founding Document of the nation contains special privileges for them.

                  That’s nice. But doesn’t have anything to do with the point I was making.

                  1. Yes it was []=O . He owned you as your positions are shit.

                    1. Shoo, fly.

                    2. Poor circle = []

                      An ignored troll.

                  2. Article 1, section 2
                    No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.

                    1. Think for a moment about what I was saying. Just a moment.

                      I was talking about the rationale that the Founding Fathers presented for treason. Because they were, make no mistake about it, committing treason.

                      There’s a particular founding document that addresses this. Can you name it?

                      That document presents an argument for why there are circumstances in which it is okay to commit treason against your king.

                      Is that argument “because we want special privileges he won’t give us?”

              2. “The United States was founded on the notion of inalienable human rights, not special privileges for citizens vs. non-citizens.”

                And yet the founding documents disagree with your assertion.

                1. And yet the founding documents disagree with your assertion.

                  [citation needed]

                  1. Article 1, section 2
                    No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.

              3. Tell that to slaves, indentured servants, and the tribes.

                1. So, if the Founding Fathers kept slaves, then there is no such thing as inalienable human rights and the Revolution was a sham? An upset of the natural order of human subjugation just like its contemporary critics said?

                  How Progressive of you.

                  1. Both the leftwing and the rightwing have lost their way when it comes to rights.

                    It used to be the leftwing that was the defender of civil liberties. Then it was the rightwing which enticed libertarians that they were really the ones most interested in liberty.

                    It seems however, that the leftwing has returned true to form – a proper conception of rights must include both negative rights and ‘positive rights’ (i.e. theft).

                    And the rightwing has also returned true to form – rights are not really rights, but privileges to be earned by those most worthy to wield them. So post-prison felons don’t have rights because they’ve demonstrated poor decision-making abilities and thus aren’t worthy to have their rights bestowed upon them. Etc.

                    It really is only libertarians who stand for liberty for liberty’s sake.

                2. +100

          2. “My “strategy” is to assign blame ”

            Indeed it is.

            Racebaiterjeff doesn’t care about reality. He cares about assigning blame. Moral preening and moral condemnation 24/7.

        2. The disproportionate outrage about immigrants receiving welfare simply tells me that the real problem, among those who scream about immigration and the welfare state, tends to be NOT the welfare state per se, but that the “wrong people” are receiving the welfare. If only the “right people” were receiving the welfare, then I guarantee that you would see a lot less outrage over those damn welfare loafers.

          1. you can’t be this ignorant. this has to be a parody account

            1. Its much much worse than a parody account.

            2. So if I’m wrong, show me where I’m wrong. Don’t just throw out lame insults.

              1. So if I’m wrong, show me where I’m wrong. Don’t just throw out lame insults.

                The superficially obvious lack of though inherent in your post tells me you’ll win every race to the bottom no matter how self-contradicting and retarded it makes you look.

                If I’m wrong, show me.

              2. “Show me where I’m wrong.”

                Been there, done that many a time.

                Problem is, you can lead racebaiterjeff to water, but you can’t make him think.

          2. The “wrong people” are non-citizens. US tax payers have no obligation to feed, cloth, educate and medicate the world.

            Of course, you are playing the tired, dog eared race card when you say the “wrong people”. Give it up, Jeff. You are suffering from some sort of brain damage that makes you incapable of understanding simple property rights and logic.

            1. US tax payers have no obligation to feed, cloth, educate and medicate the world.

              Do US tax payers have an obligation to feed, cloth[e], educate and medicate its own citizens? Via the coercive state?

                1. Then I agree.

                  Theft is theft whether it is committed by politicians on behalf of native-born citizens demanding welfare, or whether it is committed by politicians on behalf of immigrants demanding welfare.

            2. Sorry, didn’t finish my thought there.

              Do US tax payers have an obligation to feed, cloth[e], educate and medicate its own citizens? Via the coercive state?

              If the answer is “yes”, then congratulations, you are proving my point – that you are objecting not to the welfare state per se, but only to how the benefits are distributed. Because you view the real evil behind the welfare state is not that the money for the welfare state is stolen from taxpayers, but that the money is given to people who are “unworthy” on some level.

              1. Less is better.

                So, you are arguing that because some money is stolen from tax payers, it would be oh so much better if more money was stolen from tax payers.

                Non US citizens are not worthy of US tax payer support. Your children at not worthy of my support. You are not welcome to come and live in my house without my specific invitation.

                You should move to Central America and work to make things better there, at ground zero. Shika can go with you, I am sure they need another left-wing gas bag to make them realize how evil the US is.

                1. So, you are arguing that because some money is stolen from tax payers, it would be oh so much better if more money was stolen from tax payers.

                  No, I am arguing that if I find $100 stolen from my wallet, and later I discover that $90 was stolen by Bob and $10 was stolen by Jose, it makes perfect sense to be upset at both of the thieves, but it makes little sense to be MORE upset at Jose for stealing $10, than at Bob for stealing $90.

                  Non US citizens are not worthy of US tax payer support. Your children at not worthy of my support.

                  So what are your standards for determining who is worthy of US tax payer support?

                  1. Let’s say your wife stole $90 and then somebody broke into your house and stole the other $10.

                    You’d seriously be more angry at your wife than the intruder?

          3. Both forms of outrage are perfectly legitimate.

            Able-bodied people who receive any form of welfare when they are still able to work often provokes outrage.

            When the able-bodied people came here from a foreign country and promised at the time of entry that they would not become a public charge, then that also provokes outrage.

            And finally, as we are able to see now, able-bodied people came here from a foreign country illegally and then become a public charge, then that also provokes outrage.

            Why is only one form of outrage legitimate?

            1. It’s all legitimate. But it’s also disproportionate. That is my point.

              Spending on welfare for immigrants is a rounding error in terms of overall government spending. But yet that spending is what often sends the outrage meter to eleventy.

              1. Maybe it’s disproportionate because there is open border articles here almost daily, and rarely articles about the welfare state in general? Or are you a mind reader?

                1. Every single article bemoaning the gigantic spending spree in DC is an article decrying the welfare state, most notable, entitlement spending.

                  I don’t think I’ve seen a single deficit- or debt-related article here at Reason that didn’t throw in an obligatory statement about “you know, the biggest source of the debt is entitlement spending”.

                  And besides, because you don’t like articles on ‘open borders’, you think that is justification enough to bring up the welfare state?

                  1. Obligatory statements in articles don’t equal entire articles daily. Also, probably because most people already agree about entitlement spending in general here, it’s not discussed much.

                    And I never said I don’t like articles about open borders, it’s the fact that they are constant, repetitive, and oversimplified.

                    Maybe you feel like the sentiment about illegal immigrants and welfare are disproportionate because you and Shikha don’t want to connect them at all?

    3. Democrats and Shikha support continued illegal immigration because they realize that it will increase their power base

      The ‘sanctuary city’ phenomenon, the willful blinding of census data, and the NPVIC is a rather blatant electoral power grab. Attract more warm bodies to your city or district… whether they vote, speak English, pay taxes, commit crimes, own property, hold jobs, start businesses or not… and you ‘represent’ more of the population.

      Even without illegal immigrants, it’s a rather overt way to (further) extrapolate “the will of the people” from an electorate that didn’t even show up to vote. It couldn’t be more anti-Democratic and, of course, Democrats are broadly for all the measures.

    4. Washington Examiner link checks out.

      Look at the numbers. They haven’t clearly defined what each of the categories entails, and “welfare” includes things like the Earned Income Tax Credit and school lunches.

      The numbers, and the charts, are clearly concocted by people with an agenda. And you’re parroting it for them. So good job for being a useful idiot, I guess?

      1. “welfare” includes things like the Earned Income Tax Credit and school lunches

        That is welfare, you proglydyte dumbfuck.

  2. Dalmia double-dog dares Dems self-destruction.

    Open-Borders Liberaltarian, is that you?

    1. Of course Shikha and I are not the same person. We’re ideologically identical, sure, but she’s a much more eloquent writer than I am.

      1. Which is true, and sad because her writing sucks.

  3. Just remember when the Dems were anti-war during the latter parts of the Bush administration and how that changed during the Obama administration.

    1. They’ve also flipped on free trade/NAFTA as well as OTC birth control

  4. This is exactly what I’ve been saying ever since I started posting here.

    Although Russia hacking our election and installing a Kremlin asset in the White House is the biggest scandal in world history, there is a silver lining — Democrats are clearly moving toward the Koch / Reason open borders position. And I predict their 2020 Presidential nominee will explicitly call for the abolition of all “border enforcement.”

    #VoteDemocratForOpenBorders
    #ImmigrationAboveAll

  5. Trump’s deal with Mexico to stop the flow of asylum seekers–along with Mexico’s efforts to turn back asylum seekers at Mexico’s border with Guatemala–appears to be having a deterrent effect. According to the following article, asylum seekers that were traveling to the U.S. to seek asylum are now seeking asylum in Mexico instead–in increasing and overwhelming numbers.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/upsurge-of-asylum-requests-poses-challenge-for-mexico-11560418201?

    There isn’t a good reason to expect that the Mexican Senate will agree to become a “third safe country” unless the alternative to that were more painful than accepting what may be millions of Central American asylum seekers. In other words, Trump may need to inflict tariffs on Mexico (90% of whose exports come to the U.S.) before Mexico’s Senate will agree to become a “third safe country”.

    Again, the time table is as follows according to Trump’s agreement with Mexico:

    They start measuring the number of asylum seekers that are reaching the U.S. border in 45 days.

    If the number of asylum seekers hasn’t been reduced significantly after 90 days, the legislation to make Mexico a “third safe country” will be introduced to the Mexican senate.

    By my calculation, that means this will all come to a head around November 1st of 2019. Buy and sell your puts and calls accordingly.

    1. The Mexican kleptocracy stays in power largely because it can export its desperately poor potential troublemakers to the USA. The exported troublemakers further help the kleptocracy by sending back $billions per year of remittances. An porous US border is the key to the kleptocracy’s future.

      So the kleptocracy really does not want US border control plus a flood of desperately poor troublemakers from Central America that get stuck in Mexico as asylum refugees.

      Trump is putting the Mexican elite in a real bind and their only hope is to wait him out. They are likely praying and paying for his ouster.

      1. The Mexican kleptocracy stays in power largely because it can export its desperately poor potential troublemakers to the USA.

        Could you provide any evidence that there is an organized, concerted effort by the Mexican government to deliberately send “troublemakers” to the US as illegal immigrants?

        1. Who cares whether it’s organized and concerted? Allowed and encouraged is good enough to keep the migrants migrating.

          1. For what they’re worth, here are some statistics:

            Remittances (people sending money to relatives) from the U.S. to Mexico totaled $26 billion in 2017.

            By way of comparison, Mexico exported about $18.5 billion in oil over a period of ten months.

            These statistics are brought to you by the right wing CNN.

            https://money.cnn.com/2018/01/02/news/economy/mexico-remittances/

            Remittances represent more than 2% of Mexico’s GDP.

            Still, immigration from Mexico has fallen to a trickle compared to asylum seekers. The numbers is May were such that they were coming in at more than a million asylum seekers per year. Mexico doesn’t want that. They’re afraid of being forced to give those people asylum as much or more than we are. If they’re too much of an expense for us, why would they be less so for Mexico?

          2. Who cares whether it’s organized and concerted?

            Well, the difference is between encouraging a particular action in order to bring about a particular result, and not discouraging a particular action with no conscious desire to bring about any specific result.

            For example, if a person moves from Ohio to Pennsylvania, should that migration be described as “Pennsylvania imports migrants”? Should that migration be described as “Ohio exports its problem migrants and offloads them to Pennsylvania”? No, both would be misleading characterizations. Instead it should be more accurately described as the free migration of free people, and the state governments involved simply aren’t imposing restrictions on this migration.

            Seems to me, the Mexican government is simply not stopping migrants from coming to the US, not that they are actively “exporting” people to the US by some deliberate conscious strategy.

            1. I don’t think anyone is surprised that you are here making excuses.

  6. The definition of “child” used by the ICE agents is anyone under 18 years of age. I have personally met one such child, who was 24 at the time he was apprehended but, lacking documentation, he presented the agents with only the option of pretending to believe him. His is small and, mostly Amerind, doesn’t need to shave more than weekly. He was released into the general population in 2018. He does not intend to check in anywhere at any time.
    Two of three of my daughters-in-law are immigrants, all properly documented. Both do not support illegal immigration. You can support a process for control of immigration without being a racist. I have been registered as a Libertarian voter since 1974.

    1. So, this is elevating an anecdotal story, representing the story of just a few people – and most likely an incomplete amount of information at that – as bearing a higher moral weight than the statistical evidence covering many millions of people encompassing a much larger amount of information to describe people.

      Let’s suppose the story you tell about your 24-year-old immigrant friend is completely accurate as you described it. Why should I accept this story as anything more than just a story? Why should I accept it as representative of any larger truth or valid trend? Perhaps your friend represents just an outlier. Perhaps the story that you tell about your friend is accurate as you know the facts, but putting the facts into a broader context reveals a very different picture. Perhaps there are facts that you don’t know that would lead you to different conclusions if you knew these facts.

      Telling these anecdotal stories is nice but it doesn’t really advance the argument one way or another.

      1. It is, of course, just an anecdote. Probably if I can meet just one who games the system, there are others – of unknown number. What I want to understand is why wanting to exert some sort of control over something as basic as who gets to decide what a border means is racist or uncaring?
        When I first visited Guatemala in the ’70s there were many villages without electricity or telephone service. Things are much better there now and people use cell phones to get information about how to get to the US and how to arrange entry. This current wave of people claiming refugee status is just the beginning – as conditions improve in Central America and word continues to get back more will take the trip, confident that they understand how to get in. El Diario had an article about people from Western Africa transiting through Mexico with the same goals.

      2. We get it, you’re full open borders to the point of wanting to import rapists.

        #neverforgetwesawjeffsayhewantstoimportrapists

  7. And of course the denizens of the Democrat Party don’t have any ulterior motives, do they?

    Heh. Is she that naive, or does she hope we are?

  8. . One was to stop their immigration trash-talk and court Hispanics and other minorities whose presence is growing in a rapidly diversifying America, as the Republican National Committee’s autopsy report recommended. (“If Hispanic Americans perceive the GOP nominee or candidate does not want them in the United States, they will not pay attention to our next sentence,” it said.)

    this is based on the assumption that enforcing immigration laws is somehow anti-Hispanic.

    How can that be?

    1. Why they insist and continue to conflate illegal and legal immigrations is bizarre given it’s disingenuous. I expect this from left-wing rags but coming from Reason it’s disappointing.

      1. Well, when the restrictionist crowd wants to reduce *legal* immigration as well, why should the two subjects necessarily be separated?

        Especially since, as evidenced by most arguments here, the motivations for restricting illegal immigration are only *partly* motivated by a desire to enforce the law.

        1. Is this the actual policy of this administration?

          I want to see the immigration numbers since 2016. Curious to see if they’ve been curbed by restrictionism. And perhaps indeed there are those who want no immigration but if the situation in the USA is anything like here, they represent a tiny, insignificant faction. A little like how lefties think the KKK literally run Trump.

          My point stands. In any event, it doesn’t detract clearly there’s an issue. There’s a difference between lawful and unlawful entry.

          Alas, I guess like how Democrats think ‘he wasn’t proved innocent’ is a legit legal stance, it shouldn’t surprise anyone they think defending illegal immigration is a virtue.

            1. Er, you do realize that’s pretty much – with some differences – the Canadian system, right?

              I see no problem in shifting away from low-skilled to high-skilled. His position is not exactly an exception in the halls of North American academia and political classes. That is, the argument low-skilled workers impact the native working poor labour force. So he’s just shifting. Doesn’t mean he’s shutting immigration down which is how it seems to be framed.

              Also, while lefties like to babble on about Canada being all stable and smart and that they want to move here (please stay away we have enough loons here), it’s worth noting our immigration policies and positions are essentially conservative in nature.

              1. Give it up, Rufus. Jeff is addled. He wants open borders, and anybody who opposes open borders is “racist”.

              2. Okay, but that is shifting the goalposts. The Trump admin along with plenty of his followers really do want less LEGAL immigration as well as less illegal immigration. And I think it’s plainly clear that for a lot of them, the reason for being opposed to illegal immigration is only partly due to a desire to enforce the law.

                Yes, in general, the exercise of liberty will have effects that, in the aggregate, will do more harm to certain groups than others, and will offer more benefits to certain groups than others. But libertarians ought to value liberty for its own sake, and not because of any effects that its exercise might produce, positive ones or not. That is to say, I support the legal right to smoke pot even if it means more people start smoking pot.

          1. There’s a difference between lawful and unlawful entry.

            Yes, there is a difference between lawful and unlawful entry. Just like there is a difference between smoking marijuana legally or illegally. Or driving a car legally or illegally. Just saying “that’s illegal” is not enough of a reason to frown upon the behavior. IMO one has to justify why the behavior ought to be illegal in the first place.

            1. Your last sentence makes no sense as I interpret it anyway.

              A nation has a set of rules and laws in place to accept immigration. You skirt that you break the law. Simple. You are illegal by virtue of unlawful entry. This thing ‘humans aren’t illegal’ is bafflingly stupid. ‘Hey, I broke the law before even becoming a citizen but don’t you dare say I’m illegal because I’m human!’ Oof.

              If you ignore your own laws, then why have them at all?

              A nation that doesn’t enforce laws lacks self-dignity.

              1. Your last sentence makes no sense as I interpret it anyway.

                It means that I don’t accept the status quo as normative. It is not enough to say “there are laws and people ought to obey them”. You have to persuade me why the law ought to exist in the first place.

                I am not arguing that every law is bad. I am arguing that each law should be defended and justified on its own merits. That is true for immigration laws as well.

      2. “Why they insist and continue to conflate illegal and legal immigrations is bizarre given it’s disingenuous.”

        I think the conflation with asylum seekers with legal immigrants is problematic, as well.

        The fact is that almost 90% of asylum seekers are either denied asylum or never show up for their hearing. Most of them don’t vacate the country at that point. It can take a couple of years to get a court date. When they’re denied asylum, they don’t turn themselves in and get sent home. They just stay here and become illegal aliens. Even if only 70% of asylum seekers eventually become illegal aliens, why pretend that asylum seekers are fundamentally different from illegal aliens? We don’t know that until they’ve had a court date.

        People who have legally immigrated here or been granted asylum are fundamentally different from illegal immigrants. For one thing, the people who made it legally have the full authority of the Constitution, the rightful purview of democracy, and the consent of the American people by way of the Congress on their side. That’s the difference.

        90% of asylum seekers, on the other hand, are only different from illegal aliens in that they’re abusing resources that are intended to benefit people who are legitimately fleeing persecution. If anything, making a false claim that deprives someone else of the legitimate support they need should put them lower on the totem pole than people who sneaked into the country without displacing a legitimate victim of persecution.

        1. “problematic”
          You’re better than this Ken.

  9. Reason is very immature on this issue.

    And advocating for lawlessness is not a virtue.

  10. Want to know how this situation will develop?

    Check the most recent 60 or 70 years of American history.

    Carry on, clingers. Until you are replaced. By your betters.

    1. One positive benefit of our new Hispanic majority population is that Arthur L. Hicklib and his spawn will eventually find out that brown people hate them, too–right about the time that he’s dropped from a bridge with a rope around his neck by an MS-13 member.

      1. Because MS-13 is representative of all brown people, amirite?

        Who is the representative for white people? Trump? Bernie? Hillary?

        1. “amirite?”

          No, you’re not, you’re just a troll who thinks inflammatory stupidity is a substitute for understanding an issue.

          1. Tu­lpa
            June.13.2019 at 2:52 pm

            you’re just a troll

            lol @ irony

        2. Because MS-13 is representative of all brown people, amirite

          You’re the one arguing that not permitting child rapists to enter the US is restricting their liberty, you tell me.

    2. You’re worse than Tony I think.

      1. That’s a very, very high bar.

        Will we recognize peak stupid when we see it? Dunno.

        1. I know. But he’s in the mix.

          1. It’s a tough call, since Tony has a brain, but chooses not to use it, while the Rev is as dumb as box of rocks, and is only capable of making that one comment, over and over and over again.

            1. Tard death match in the octagon (8 sided, Rev): 2 tards enter, neither tard can figure out how to get out!

    3. Every waking moment of your useless retarded life should be spent on the receiving end of a brutal merciless asskicking. You really really need to have the ever living shit kicked out of you every second you infect the earth with your existence.

    4. ‘Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?’

  11. As Republicans grow more restrictionist, it was easy to imagine that the Democrats might take the path just followed by the Social Democrats in Denmark, who last week clawed their way back to power after a long hiatus by embracing the hardline immigration agenda of the far-right parties

    Fuckin’ LOL at anyone who actually believes that the Democrats–who have been supported by a majority of Hispanics for decades; are quite open for years now about the fact that their long-term strategy on demographics is to simply wait until whites are no longer a majority in several states including Texas, by encouraging increased immigration; and whose white party members are the only demographic that is actively hostile to those of their own ethnic group–would ever have become more restrictionist.

  12. I’m done. Peace out guys. The stupidity required of the staff here required to attract the attention of The Atlantic or MSNBC is just too aggravating.

    See y’all in the camps the Dems set up with the help of the free minds and free markets crowd.

    1. Thanks for trying Johnny.

      I have scaled back my time on reason because of all the troll socks and hatred of Libertarianism and America with these articles.

      I thought Shikha was gone for good, which would have been a good sign. I guess she is still paid to post nonsense at reason.

    2. See y’all in the camps the Dems set up with the help of the free minds and free markets crowd.

      We really need to come up with a handshake or secret code so that we can identify each other as Reason forumites.

      I suggest that the phrase: “I didn’t think the pot and mexican ass sex would be *this* good.”
      Be answered with: “I have trouble seeing an essential difference between Chris Kyle and Adam Lanza.”

      1. We could just all write “STEVE SMITH” on our name tags

    3. Buh-bye!

      We will all be able to identify you in the camps. You’ll be in the one with Kurt Schlichter labeled “Gutter Conservatives”.

      1. He’s gone dummy.

        You trolls and your scripting need to post when eVeryone ignores you.

  13. What explains this Democratic romance with immigrants? Part of it is that a general revulsion at Trump’s border cruelty inherited from the Obama administration – his child separation polices, internment-style camps for Central American asylum seekers, deportations of people who’ve built lives in America—is generating a pendulum swing in a pro-immigration direction.

    FIFY

  14. Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump

    Democrats have always wanted slaves to work for them and control their wages via non-free market schemes like actual slavery, unions, or fear of deportation.

  15. Because modern US politics is all about opposite extremes. If Trump wants something, the Democrats instinctively want the exact opposite. If the Democrats seem to be for something the Republicans instinctively take the extreme exact opposite.

    There has always been a little bit of this in any party system, but it’s gotten fucking crazy in the past twenty years, and has reached peak retard since the Trump win.

    The Democrats used to be the party of anti-trade, the party of insane protectionism. Bernie is still that way, but Bernie is technically NOT a Democrat, he’s a socialist and independent. Socialists hate trade. But now that Trump and his sycophant Republicans now hate trade, and the Democrats realized they’ve lost the hardcore Union vote, they’re now moving away from protectionism and trade barriers. Oh sure, they’ll always be for micro-managed trade and shit, just because they’re instinctive bureaucrats, but the idea of building an impermeable trade wall around the nation is no longer a Democratic ideal. It’s now a Republican thing.

    Historically the big nasty tarrifs have all come from the Democrats. To the point that the South (which were mostly Democrats at the time) blockaded THEMSELVES during the Civil War. Now it’s the Republicans who are threatening to blockade the US to make sure no goods get in.

    1. While I agree that the GOP has shifted more recently, the Democrats have always been this way.

      Democrats have always been anti-Free Trade. It ebbs and flows as to how severe based on whether the GOP controls Congress and what the winds are.

      Democrats are not suddenly Free Trade. Democrats have stifled the US economy with regulations out the ass and the economy is doing well in spite of them. Democrats want illegals because they need to them to work the shitty jobs that rich Lefties want but wont pay for and to buy them for votes.

      The only reason you are seeing this behavior out in the open is because Trump is not letting them get away with their Socialist nonsense. When the Democrats were no able to get more from a Republican Congress after Lincoln was elected, the Confederates seceded.

      When Democrats are losing it all, they get desperate, which is what we are seeing. The Democrat Party is dying. When Lefties say that Trump is the harbinger of the End, they mean the end of the Democrat Party and their political power.

    2. If Trump wants something, the Democrats instinctively want the exact opposite. If the Democrats seem to be for something the Republicans instinctively take the extreme exact opposite.

      ^ So much this. To the point of sputtering incoherence on both sides.

      The Democrats used to be the party of anti-trade, the party of insane protectionism.

      Only since Bryant. You can see the last major flipping of positions on this over the course of McKinley’s presidency. Cleveland was an old-style Democrat in a more Jacksonian tradition of resistance to the protectionism of the Whigs-Turned-Republicans. Earlier in his career, McKinley, disciple of John Sherman, was a great anti-business, anti-free trade crusader. But then Bryant ran from his economic left and the Republicans quickly (over the course of 1900-1920) became the (kinda-sorta) ‘laissez faire’ party while the Democrats became the ‘socialist-lite’ party.

      Now that AOC and Cruz are teaming up, Tucker Carlson is singing Elizabeth Warren’s praises, and union oil workers in CA are abandoning the Dems, we’re seeing a new re-aligning right before our very eyes.

      Historically the big nasty tarrifs have all come from the Democrats. To the point that the South (which were mostly Democrats at the time) blockaded THEMSELVES during the Civil War.

      Southern Democrats weren’t big fans of tariffs, actually. The Lost Causers tend to see disagreements over tariffs and Northern protectionism as primary causes of the Civil War.

  16. No, the democrats are not more pro-immigration.
    They’re pro open borders, and why not?
    After all, America’s quotas for criminals, terrorist and people with infectious diseases are down, way down.
    We can’t have that.
    I mean, what next?
    Guards at the border?

  17. There is no pro-immigration for the Democrats. They are pro massive, unchecked, illegal migration into the US which holds legal immigrants in utter contempt.

  18. Strange to see that so many people supposedly committed to free minds and free markets, want to deny rights to others based on where they were born.
    Immigrants, legal or illegal, have the same rights as American citizens, because rights are inalienable and natural. Rights do not come from governments, they arise out of the mutual respect that people of good character are willing to extend to each other. Governments are vehicles designed to empower politicians to steal from those who have wealth, and promise to do something good or coercive with the stolen money.
    People who insist on special privileges for citizens, purchased at the expense of theft and coercion, do not respect the rights of others.

    1. Not a single nation in history has ever held that unlimited numbers of foreigners have any kind of legal right to enter the nation without its consent.

      1. You mean, every nation in the history of the planet has had a coercive state that tried to restrict the liberties of its citizens? No way!

        1. Yea, even lions – who scratch up trees to mark the boundaries of their territory and violently defend against breeches of those boundaries – have always had a coercive state which restricts liberty!

          Fn racist ass lions (and other animals)

      2. Yup. Open borders is a non-linertarian dream to destroy the USA.

        Luckily the Democrat Party is dying as a political force and wont get the illegals they need to save them.

  19. The headline and subhead explain a lot around here at HyR.

    Meanwhile in 1988 as a NY assembly candidate from LP, I thought I was moving the Overton window — we didn’t call it that yet — in my direction in a panel discussion on housing policy, making the guy from the Committee of 100 Democrats (conservative Dems) sound like a moderate, especially when he said, “We’re not like those Libertarians,” meaning me, “we just want to find a formula we can all agree on.” However, years later I realized I probably had the opposite effect, making people aware of the radical position and tying would-be moderates to it — a backlash. Since then I’ve gotten the idea that stating what you really want in a negotiation (democracy being a negotiation) isn’t necessarily the best idea for influencing others.

  20. Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump . . .
    Yes the democrats are more pro-immigration and to them there is none that are illegal even if they are criminal.

  21. In Shika’s America, no one has agency but Trump.

  22. Hmm, when Trump offered to send the illegals to California, NY, and other Dem strongholds…the Dems seemed awfully upset about the plan.

  23. Love all the white trash gnashing of teeth by the conspiratoid/Alex jones types whenever they are presented with the fact that free markets require free movement of all factors of production, including labor, and Reason consistently (and correctly) supports it. If you oppose free immigration (does not equal open, unguarded borders) you’re not only ignorant of the basic gains of trade we’ve known about since fucking ricardo (macro 101), you probably conform to the elitist liberal stereotype of trashy conservatives and are consequently insecure about it. Do yourself a favor and read economics in one lesson or go back to storm front.org or 4chan.

    Sincerely,
    Coastal Elitist

    1. ” If you oppose free immigration (does not equal open, unguarded borders)”

      Define the difference, please. You want guards on the borders but for them to stop nobody?

    2. Here’s the thing: I don’t argue that total free movement of EVERYTHING might make the WORLD wealthier overall…

      The question is does it make some particular nations worse off? The obvious answer is YES. With true freedom of movement it would cause wages to level out worldwide. This would be HORRIBLE for people in first world nations.

      Therefore I don’t give 2 fucks about the supposed right of international movement. I would rather restrict a minor so called “right” of some illiterate peasant than turn my country into a 3rd world shithole. It’s that simple.

      People want to pretend that allowing in 10s of millions of illiterate peasants somehow wouldn’t make the country poorer and shittier, when it obviously would. Make an honest argument or STFU.

  24. […] “Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump,” by Shikha Dalmia […]

  25. […] “Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump,” by Shikha Dalmia […]

  26. […] “Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump,” by Shikha Dalmia […]

  27. […] “Democrats Have Never Been More Pro-Immigration, Thanks to Trump,” by Shikha Dalmia […]

  28. Wait, are you trying to say the left wing of the Democratic party is doubling down on yet ANOTHER retarded plank??? Well I never woulda guessed.

    This shit will all be coming to a head before long. I pray that the adults win this argument and America doesn’t go completely 3rd world.

  29. […] I predicted that former Vice President Joe Biden would quietly move away from his longstanding flirtation with […]

  30. […] I predicted that former Vice President Joe Biden would quietly move away from his longstanding flirtation with […]

  31. […] I predicted that former Vice President Joe Biden would quietly move away from his longstanding flirtation with […]

  32. […] I predicted that former Vice President Joe Biden would quietly move away from his longstanding flirtation with […]

  33. […] harsh border enforcement polices have made Democrats more  pro-immigration than ever, as I wrote recently. However, the Democratic presidential contenders have been high on high-minded rhetoric […]

  34. […] harsh border enforcement polices have made Democrats more  pro-immigration than ever, as I wrote recently. However, the Democratic presidential contenders have been high on high-minded rhetoric […]

  35. […] harsh border enforcement polices have made Democrats more  pro-immigration than ever, as I wrote recently. However, the Democratic presidential contenders have been high on high-minded rhetoric […]

  36. […] harsh border enforcement polices have made Democrats more  pro-immigration than ever, as I wrote recently. However, the Democratic presidential contenders have been high on high-minded rhetoric […]

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