MENU

Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

House Republicans Make a Last-Ditch Attempt to Save DACA and Themselves

They are doing an end run around House Speaker Ryan to force a floor vote on a Dreamer fix

Ass covering is the sine qua non of politics. So it is not surprising that vulnerable Republican Congressmen in blue districts have gotten off their asses before the mid-term elections to make a last ditch attempt to bypass their hardline colleagues and pass a bill legalizing Dreamers, immigrants brought here as children without proper authorization. But what is surprising is that instead of helping them, retiring House Speaker Paul Ryan, who promised Dreamers last year that he would do everything in his power to DreamersR S Lucy Nicholson Reuters via Newscom"find a way to make sure" they can "get right with the law," is more interested in covering President Trump's ass.

Trump last year suspended DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), the Obama-era program that gave a temporary reprieve from deportation to qualified Dreamers, and told Congress to pass legislation if it wanted protections for Dreamers. That wouldn't have been so terrible if he hadn't then also worked with immigration hardliners to undermine Congress by demanding all kinds of poison pills—including a 40 percent cut in legal immigration—in exchange. The DACA protections expired in March and Dreamers would have been up for mass deportations had courts not intervened and forced the administration to maintain the program for now.

The Supreme Court may eventually agree to hear the case if Congress continues to dither, but in the meantime Republicans like Rep. Jeff Denham from California and Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Florida, who are hanging by a thread in their seats, have to fight midterm elections in November.

Denham, an Air Force veteran who endorsed Trump in 2016 and has since voted with the president 97 percent of the time, including funding the wall, is particularly vulnerable. He won this Central Valley district, where Latinos are over 40 percent of the population, by a narrow 3 percentage points in 2016—and is now facing massive pushback. Papier-mache effigies and "Dump Denham" signs follow him everywhere in this Republican leaning district that is now considered a toss up.

Meanwhile, Curbelo, who is seeking a third term in a district that Hillary Clinton won by 16 points, is even more vulnerable even though the Democrat he will face in November is a virtual unknown.

So the duo has led a rebellion in the House where immigration hardliners have killed all sensible immigration reform for 12 years if it contained even the whiff of so-called amnesty, even though majorities in the House and Senate were ready to pass them—and President Bush and Obama were ready pen in hand to sign them—creating the unfortunate situation now.

They are using a rare parliamentary maneuver called the discharge petition to get four of the many DACA bills currently trapped in committee released for an up or down floor vote against the wishes of the House leadership that has shown no interest in controlling the hardliners. The bill that gets the maximum number of votes—called the Queen of the Hill bill—is considered to have passed the House and is sent to the Senate. This maneuver has been used only 25 times since 1935, the last time in 2015 to revive the Ex-Im Bank, America's enduring monument to crony capitalism, after its charter expired. If 218 lawmakers sign the discharge petition, that'll clear the way for a floor vote. There is a very good chance that the DACA bill that'll go forward from among the four will be one that hands the president money for some enforcement in exchange for legalizing 1.5 million or so Dreamers with an eventual path to citizenship. Among the other bills that would be up for a vote would include one that Speaker Ryan would get to pick (which, heaven forbid, would force him to actually take a position!), and another rather draconian bill favored by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Virginia, that would only offer about 700,000 DACA beneficiaries—not all Dreamers—a three-year renewable nonimmigrant visa in exchange for funding for a wall, enhanced enforcement and cuts in legal immigration—in other words a nativist version of comprehensive immigration reform.

But 218 votes seemed like a tall order for a while especially since the House currently has only 428 as opposed to 435 members when it is at full strength. However, everything changed a few weeks ago when Denham and Curbelo teamed up initially with 190 Democrats (all but three of the 193) and 23 Republicans to scrape together 213 votes for the discharge petition. Then last week, they got another two Democrats (who had been waffling because they did not want to set up a bill that might fund a border wall that would run right through their districts) for a grand total of 215 votes.

There are plenty of Republicans who can make up the three-vote deficit (even if the last Democratic holdout does not hop on board) to reach the 218 threshold. These include Rep. Darrel Issa of California who has decided to retire—and Rep. Dan Donovan of New York, Rep. Don Bacon of Nebraska and Rep. Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey—all of whom are middle-of-the-roaders who, along with 79 percent of Americans—and 66 percent of Republicans, support a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers.

Hence, a panicked Ryan pleaded with the discharge petition backers to hold off until he huddled with House Republicans on Thursday to see if he could rally enough of them around a bill that the president would sign. But the two-hour confab seemed to have brought the hopelessly divided Republicans no closer to a consensus because the notion of restricting legal immigration is deeply unpopular with many of them. And the POTUS, who after initially saying he'd sign anything Congress sent his way to legalize Dreamers, pulled a Trump Tower-sized switcheroo and declared that he won't sign anything that doesn't cut family-based immigration and end the diversity visa lottery program along with other assaults on legal immigration. And if the logjam doesn't break today, Dunham and Curbelo are expected to go ahead and obtain the remaining signatures in the next 36 hours to move the petition forward. This will allow them to give the requisite notice to hold the petition vote on June 25.

This is Ryan's nightmare scenario that he has done everything to avert. Indeed, by House rules, discharge petitions can only be held on the second and fourth Mondays of every month. So he reconstituted the House calendar this week so that the House met not today, June 11, but Friday so that petition backers would get only one shot this month to move their bid forward.

But why is Ryan going to such great lengths to thwart a cause that he is openly sympathetic to?

It is true that even if a Dreamer bill advances through the House, it will face an uphill battle in the Senate where the Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has, like Ryan, decided to take a stance against it. But if the House, that has distinguished itself by its decade-plus hostility to humane and pro-growth immigration policies that Reason has long championed, manages to push this bill through, McConnell's opposition will become far less sustainable. It will put moderate Republicans in the Senate on the spot and they might well demand a vote, which, if the bill gets, it will pass.

If Trump vetoes the bill at that stage, he will further energize Democrats to the polls in November. It could well undo the recent uptick in his approval ratings thanks to the improving economy (which his trade wars with friends and foes alike are already in the process of undoing). Hence, Ryan would rather help Trump cover his ass now than put Republican control of the House in even greater jeopardy.

But it is terribly myopic to set the policy of a party based on the whims of a capricious president.

Ryan, no doubt partly because of the difficulty of working with the president, is retiring at the end of the year. If there were ever a good time to put principle above party and support the newly woke Denham and Curbelo in finally doing the right thing, this would be it. This is especially the case given that in the long run this would help take the GOP back from nativists and restore its pro-immigrant bona fides, giving it a fighting chance to win in a rapidly diversifying America.

That he does not have the backbone to do so suggests that it is no tragedy he is leaving.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Citizen X||

    There are an awful lot of last ditches on the main Hit'n'Run page today.

  • $park¥ leftist poser||

    The world needs last ditch diggers too.

  • $park¥ leftist poser||

    This is punishment for letting John roam free in the comments.

  • JWatts||

    "This is punishment for letting John roam free in the comments."

    It seems like this is just creating fertile ground for John.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    That's what John's mom said, in a prophetic trance, many years ago.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    John kept commenting in the womb? He was probably criticizing his mom about all her date choices or something.

    "How am I supposed to sleep with all this banging?"

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I meant the "It seems like this is just creating a fertile ground for John."

    But it's a prophetic trance, so she can say whatever.

  • John||

    Your mother said you were unbearable in the womb chipper. She really seems to be angry and a bit bitter about it. It almost makes the sex I have with her not worth having. Can you apologize or something?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I didn't know you like fucking urns of ash. You are one sick bastard.

  • JurisCani||

    If you want more John, THIS is how you get more John!

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I am seeing double. Four Dalmias!

  • Rhywun||

    "How many Dalmias am I holding up?"

  • ThomasD||

    Coprophilia usually ends early in childhood.

    Seek help.

  • BambiB||

    What did we do to deserve Shikha? Nothing. Sometimes the world is just cruel.

    As for the flood of criminal invaders - anywhere else in the world, 12 to 20 million people crossing a border illegally would be called what it is: Invasion. The way you stop an invasion is to kill the invaders until they stop coming. Trump should put the military on the border with orders to shoot anyone crossing illegally. Give the invaders already here 6 months to get out. After that, put a bounty on them and when they're caught, put them in a desert tent prison in Arizona for 2 years and confiscate all their property. When their sentence is up, dump them over the border with a promise that if they ever return for any reason, they will be executed.

    Simultaneously, begin fining ($1000/day) employers and landlords who negligently employ or rent property to criminal invaders. "Negligence" would be failure to E-Verify the employee/renter.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Why do you people hate dreams?

  • Shirley Knott||

    People who say"may all your dreams come true" forget that nightmares are also dreams.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    And by "Obama-era program", you of course really mean "unconstitutional Obama executive order".

  • Citizen X||

    Mikey is also Dave Weigel's creepy ass-stalker, if you want to wax accurate.

    Kirkland is sort of growing on me. He's either a masterful player of trollish games or severely, severely autistic, it's hard to tell.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    He just comes off to me as someone who grew up poor, and is very resentful of it. Honestly, I'm similar towards the NW where I was born.

  • Citizen X||

    If unintentional, his use of the same phrases over and over again (and the other day, he reposted several comments verbatim in multiple threads) would seem to indicate some level of disordered affect.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I've noticed this from the most extreme cocky posters. He's one, Hihn of course. They will directly reference their own posts in different scenarios, and they seem to believe the old comment completely covers the new issue.

    Which is interesting, it is a clear difficulty with their rhetoric. They have some idea of what their comment is supposed to mean, but they don't understand no one knows what they're saying.

    The few times I genuinely tried to talk to Hihn and make sense of anything he was saying was a rough adventure.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    In Hihn's case, I don't think it's just a matter of being "cocky". He appears to me to have some kind of psychiatric problem, poor guy.

    Can you imagine what his life must be like, if he's anything like that in person?

  • Citizen X||

    Hihn is sundowning like a mofo. Our less superannuated trolls don't have that excuse.

  • hello.||

    The reason they seem so similar is because they're the same fucking person you retard. Hihn operates about half a dozen socks. Although he primarily uses David Nolan Mikey Hihn and Kirkland.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    And that person is our old "friend" Mary Stack of Fort Worth, Texas.

  • Morbo||

    I seriously doubt Kirkland is Hihn's sock. Kirkland came over with the Volokh Conspiracy blog, where he's been a very long term troll, dating back to when the VC had their own website prior to being hosted on the Washington Post.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Nah, I don't think he has enough self control to make Kirkland look that different from Hihn. If he tried that it would be obvious.

    The Kirklands, (More than one person, or a case of MPD? Who can tell?) have a long history.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    I don't mind Kirkland. He is kinda entertaining and he was willing to post his origin story. I fear we will never get Mikey's origin story.

  • Citizen X||

    There was a Kirkland origin story? When was this?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    He talked about growing up in a midwestern town full of ignorant, uneducated fundies. It was a few weeks ago. I am surw he would be happy to repeat it if you ask him.

  • hello.||

    Kirkland is sort of growing on me.

    The fact that you both share identical viewpoints on absolutely everything might have something to do with it. At least he's doing it for a laugh.

    I prefer when he posts under his primary account as Mikey Hihn myself.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Fuck off, Dalmia. Ignoring the voters creates backlash. Some moderation on your part is in the best long term interest of immigrants. If governments tell their citizens to go stuff themselves in favor of some other demographic, are you really too stupid to realize the consequences? The divisiveness? The Dems are taking the side of Mexican gangs (not slandering people by calling them criminal because of their ethnicity, but literal, convicted criminals) to be all-in on immigration. Do you really not realize the end result of BS like that? Are you really that dumb?

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    giving it a fighting chance to win in a rapidly diversifying America.

    "We don't have to care what you think, voters. Ignoring you brings in new voters who will keep us in power no matter what you think. We are making you irrelevant in your own country because that is best for us."

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    So what is your plan? Other than obviously building a giant wall and hunting down every last undocumented immigrant and kicking their asses out. That is taken for granted. Does all immigration cease entirely?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Shikha is not gonna sleep with you, Longtorso. Stop negging her.

  • Sigivald||

    "Do you want more Trump, Dalmia?"

  • BambiB||

    She realizes. She just doesn't care. Shikha would rather you be robbed, raped, beaten, tortured, murdered - unless you happen to be a criminal who is here illegally. Then it's time to stand up for their "rights".

    Guess what? They have no rights. The US Constitution is the contract between American Citizens and the federal government... not between the retarded flotsam of the world and American welfare dollars.

  • BambiB||

    She realizes. She just doesn't care. Shikha would rather you be robbed, raped, beaten, tortured, murdered - unless you happen to be a criminal who is here illegally. Then it's time to stand up for their "rights".

    Guess what? They have no rights. The US Constitution is the contract between American Citizens and the federal government... not between the retarded flotsam of the world and American welfare dollars.

  • MoreFreedom||

    I agree. As a Reason supporter, long time libertarian, a voter for Johnson, a brother of a child killed by an illegal who ran a red light, and someone who'd like more legal immigration of people that will CONTRIBUTE to the country (as opposed to commit crimes and go on welfare), Dalmia's position is unfortunate IMHO.

    Dalmia and others can continue to make the case that illegals aren't as bad overall as citizens in general, but that ignores the fact that we're still getting people who break our laws to come here, and who harm US citizens that wouldn't be harmed if they weren't here. Where is the zero tolerance for criminal illegals - if you can save one life isn't that enough reason to STOP all immigration? Not that I'm calling for that.

    Dalmia points out the less immigration poison pill, but IMHO all Trump wanted was to stop the Visa lottery, and better immigrants rather than anti-American criminals. She failed to point out the Democrats walked from the table. They don't appear to be willing to bargain for the Dreamers, but Trump was willing to negotiate, and I'd bet he would have dropped the less immigration poison pill to help them. The Democrats only care about their power. Same thing for the RINOs.

  • HGW xx/7||

    Yes, Dalmia, I'm sure conservatives et al will take your paraiah-esque griping under serious consideration and act immediately. After all, you clearly have such concern for saving the souls of those who lean right or live outside urban ivory towers. It's not like you condescendingly talk down to them all the time, right?

    Just give into you inner prog and fuck off.

  • JonFrum||

    Let's see if we can come to a mutual agreement. First, we let all the so-called 'dreamers' stay. Then, we deport their parents for bringing them here. Immediately. Without appeal.

    There, fixed.

  • damikesc||

    No deport all the parents first. Secure the border first. THEN, we will discuss a possible amnesty.

    They've already shown that they cannot be trusted.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    But you would NEVER support amnesty under any conditions. Secure border or not. Parents deported or not. Because in the end it boils down to your view that immigrants will vote for Democrats and turn the country into a third world hellhole. So just be honest with your arguments for a change. You view immigration as a political weapon in your incessant war against the Left.

  • Sigivald||

    The Left views immigration as a political weapon in its incessant war for total victory, too.

    So ...?

    (I mean, I'm not him.

    I want both very secure borders and lots of legal immigrants; my "solution" is "kick out everyone in smallish groups and let them right back in with green cards if they've got a reasonably clean criminal record", which covers "almost all illegals", right?

    And then "keep issuing green cards at comparable rates in the future", too.

    But, also, no Amnesty, because it's been done before, and "amnesty every time there's a lot of illegals" makes a mockery of the law and of immigration policy itself.

    Never-ending amnesties is a way to have open borders while pretending not to, and "pretend" policies are bullshit.)

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    The Left views immigration as a political weapon in its incessant war for total victory, too.

    So ...?

    It means that they are no more virtuous on the subject of immigration than the Right is. Both tribes view immigration in terms of vote. The Left believes that immigrants will always vote for them and so wants more of them. The Right demagogues the issue of immigration to rile up its base of voters.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    my "solution" is "kick out everyone in smallish groups and let them right back in with green cards if they've got a reasonably clean criminal record"

    If you are going to give them green cards anyway, why go through the charade of kicking them out and then letting them back in?

  • damikesc||

    But you would NEVER support amnesty under any conditions.

    And you'd oppose any meaningful border control.

    Because in the end it boils down to your view that immigrants will vote for Democrats and turn the country into a third world hellhole.

    California is damning evidence.

    You view immigration as a political weapon in your incessant war against the Left.

    No. OUR job is not to fix the world's problem. OUR job is not to take in all of the world's misery. We've done that and got hated for it.

    So FUCK the world.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    You dodged the question. Admit it, there are no conceivable conditions under which you would ever support any amnesty, even if we had a 100% secure border.

    And funny how California is always trotted out for the hypothesis of "Mexicans turn states blue". What about Texas then? Or Arizona?

    So FUCK the world.

    That is about the level of argumentation I've come to expect from Trumpsters.

  • hello.||

    What about Texas then? Or Arizona?

    Some of us don't beat off at night to dreams of being governed by John McCain and Janet Napolitano.

  • BYODB||

    So you think Texas or Arizona, respectively, have the same number of illegal immigrants as California?

    Interesting claim.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    No, not as many. But if the hypothesis of "Mexicans turn states blue" is correct, why isn't Texas a purplish state instead of a deep red one?

  • BYODB||

    If you've been paying any attention, that is the trend genius.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    This trend seems much slower to develop in Texas than it is in California. Perhaps there are other factors involved that determine how "red" or "blue" a border state is, besides just the number of Mexicans?

  • BYODB||

    Of course it's slower, Texas and Arizona both take active measures to discourage it whereas California does the exact opposite. What would you expect?

  • BYODB||

    And, I'll go ahead and say your allusion that I give a fuck about racial demographics is pretty far afield. That issue is not on my radar, but importing votes is clearly unethical so...I might have lost your point in all your sophistry.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    I didn't say you claimed to care about racial demographics. Brett was the one who brought it up, not you.

  • hello.||

    Perhaps there are other factors involved that determine how "red" or "blue" a border state is, besides just the number of Mexicans?

    Perhaps no one argued that the number of Mexicans was the sole factor involved in determining how "red" or "blue" a border state is and you're just using it as a strawman because you're a fucking retard who can't think in anything but snippets from Cato executive summaries.

  • hello.||

    Dallas is the only part of Texas that consistently votes Republican anymore. Arizona has always waffled.

    Another good example that's notable by its absence from your "analysis" is Nevada. Nevada has one of the highest illegal immigrant populations per capita and has just coincidentally gone from being mostly red to solid blue.

  • BYODB||

    Dallas is run by Progressives, I can tell you that much for sure. I live here, and listen to city council meetings. They are, at best, RINO.

  • hello.||

    But you would NEVER support amnesty under any conditions.

    There have been 6 amnesties since the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 which was supposed to be the amnesty to end all amnesties. It's like when your uncle keeps promising you he won't cum in your mouth at bedtime.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    But you would NEVER support amnesty under any conditions. Secure border or not. Parents deported or not. Because in the end it boils down to your view that immigrants will vote for Democrats and turn the country into a third world hellhole. So just be honest with your arguments for a change. You view immigration as a political weapon in your incessant war against the Left.

  • retiredfire||

    No.
    Conservatives view immigration as laws, legitimately passed by Congress, that have been ignored.
    An amnesty rewards those who broke those laws and encourages more to do so, waiting for their amnesty.
    Amnesty is an anarchic tactic.
    Proggies want anarchy, at least as far as laws that have been passed that they don't like.
    Forcing people to embrace homosexual "marriage", however, those kinds of laws are inviolate.
    But you are right about the reason you proggies want more low-skilled, low educated, welfare sucking immigrants - to keep the government gravy-train making the US into another USSR or Venezuela.

  • BambiB||

    Better deal: Dreamers: You can choose to stay - but if you do, we execute your parents. Decide.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Even the slightest whiff of amnesty wouldn't be political poison if the Reagan era amnesty had actually been followed up by the promised border enforcement.

    It's just too obvious all you want is the amnesty, and plan to renege on anything traded for it. So now the public rationally demands that the border security be delivered on before any amnesty can be discussed.

    We're tired of our lords and masters "electing a new people". Maybe it's too late to stop the process, maybe it isn't, but we're going to try.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    What standard of border security would be good enough for you?

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Enough that illegal immigration isn't measurable altering America's demographics or crime rates. Say, 1% of what we're experiencing at present.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Enough that illegal immigration isn't measurable altering America's demographics or crime rates.

    Wouldn't legal immigration also alter America's demographics? Doesn't this also imply that you are also against legal immigration?

    And what should be the "correct" demographics for the country in your view?

  • BYODB||

    It only implies that if you're unwilling to notice that legal and illegal immigration aren't the same thing Chem, but that's about your speed. In fairness, that is also the same speed of libertarian think tanks that have published studies literally conflating them as the same thing.

    It's retarded, and a lie, but that doesn't stop people from citing it.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Many - not all, but many - of the arguments trotted out by the border restrictionists apply to both legal and illegal immigration. For instance, the worry about "altering America's demographics" that Brett invoked above. That is an argument that applies in both cases. Also, the one about "Mexicans vote for Democrats". Which is actually a stronger argument against legal immigration than illegal immigration, but it doesn't stop the Trumpsters from using it against illegal immigration too. So perhaps one reason why so many people treat legal and illegal immigration in the same manner is because both sides are repeatedly doing it, either explicitly or implicitly, with their arguments.

  • BYODB||

    Well, if you're only going to pay attention to the obviously fallacious low hanging arguments that strikes me as a pretty piss poor judgment on your ability to reason.

    The important issues are things you seem either entirely unaware of, or those are things you simply don't have sophist arguments to trot out that feel good but have bad endings.

    Comparing migrant fruit pickers with M.D.'s has always been a fools errand, but that doesn't stop people from stating loudly and often than they are exactly the same. What is somewhat depressing is seeing useful idiots repeat it.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    obviously fallacious low hanging arguments

    Don't complain to me, complain to the people making the terrible arguments. Someone like Brett makes an argument such as "I want to see illegal immigration reduced so that it no longer measurably alters America's demographics" and what do you expect me to do? Just *pretend* that this same argument doesn't also apply to legal immigration? The ones who tend to get all pissy about people conflating legal and illegal immigration are the same ones who make arguments against illegal immigration that are *just as valid* against legal immigration too. Maybe they should stop to consider that no one anymore buys their bullshit pretense of "only being against illegal immigration" when they keep making arguments that apply to all immigrants.

  • BYODB||


    Don't complain to me, complain to the people making the terrible arguments.

    Notably, no one is making good arguments but to throw other people's bad arguments back at me as if I'm the one saying them is not admirable or even useful.

    In terms of you and your arguments, I have told you why what you're saying is bullshit. That has not dissuaded you to date, so I lack confidence that it will matter this time either.

    The utilitarian way of putting this is 'American's like their high wages more than illegal or legal immigrants' thus to expect any change here is sophomoric. At best lower wages will be forced onto Americans, and they'll wonder how it could be that their labor is no longer valued. At that point, queue the revolution.

    Also, for your edification, this transcends parties. Democrats are simply too ignorant to understand the ramifications and thus have a ready excuse. Even that assumes facts not in evidence, since all the facts point towards both parties looking to an illegal immigrant workforce to shore up Social Security as it moves the voting populace fully into a welfare state.

    I'd call it a 'Vote Plantation' but that may be too apt for some to swallow.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    BYODB, your arguments seem more focused on the practical rather than the theoretical or the principled area of things. I agree with you that it is not pragmatic at this moment to have peaceful free movement of labor across borders. I think it is a bit hyperbolic to think it would lead to revolution, however. I am arguing from the point of view of what I think is the right and principled thing to do.

  • BYODB||

    Theoretical or principled stances are fine to talk about but are notably impractical and, moreover, naval gazing when they involve states of being that are (in my view) inhuman.

    One place they don't really belong is in discussions of actual policy. This is because legislation is the fancy word we use for 'compromise'.

    I didn't like it when I was younger, and while I still don't care for it I recognize it for what it is; a necessary evil. The question is how far you're willing to compromise to hold together a society, and when lines are crossed you get wars and redrawing of borders among other unsavory ends.

  • John||

    One that would prevent 11 million illegal immigrants from being in the country.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Okay, so how many would be tolerable for you?

  • hello.||

    Well after the 6 million we amnestied in 1986 and the million more in the 6 subsequent amnesties and the 1.2 million we allow in legally every year I guess the logical answer would be about 123 million. That's the current population of Mexico.

  • MJBinAL||

    ZERO

  • KevinP||

    I would be OK with less than 50,000 illegals in the country at any given moment.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    And from a practical standpoint, how big of a police state are you willing to support to bring this about?

  • retiredfire||

    If it takes a "police state" to see our laws enforced, then one big enough to accomplish the goal.
    If we devolve into this "police state" of which you speak, it is on the heads of those, who break our laws, or those who encourage it, out of some misguided belief that we can't control our own sovereignty.
    Since no other country has the kind of illegal immigration problem that we do, and all have immigration enforcement that is nowhere near as lax as ours, the the rest of the world must be this "police state" of which you speak.
    I've been to other countries - it isn't Nazi Germany of the 30's and 40's.

  • BambiB||

    Build the wall. Mine the area. Assign sniper teams. Fly predator drones. Kill them all.

  • damikesc||

    So it can die in the Senate or, best case, be vetoed by Trump. It does, however, insure they will be primaried out.

    Good job, morons. Dalmia, who wouldn't have voted for you, thinks you're swell.

  • M.L.||

    Last ditch attempt to destroy themselves. Trump's immigration agenda is wildly popular, especially among Hispanic and black Americans.

  • damikesc||

    The Supreme Court may eventually agree to hear the case if Congress continues to dither,

    Always interesting to see Libertarians indicate Congress is required to pass legislation, even without majority approval of it.

  • damikesc||

    They are using a rare parliamentary maneuver called the discharge petition to get four of the many DACA bills currently trapped in committee released for an up or down floor vote against the wishes of the House leadership that has shown no interest in controlling the hardliners. The bill that gets the maximum number of votes – called the Queen of Hills bill – is considered to have passed the House and is sent to the Senate. This maneuver has been used only 25 times since 1935, the last time in 2015 to revive the Ex-Im Bank, America's enduring monument to crony capitalism, after its charter expired.

    So it's only used for good and noble reasons, obviously.

    Dalmia, you have no credibility. We GAVE you amnesty years ago and you reneged on everything. So, fuck you. We don't TRUST you.

  • BYODB||

    But this time they pinky swear that the thing they promise as a comprise will definitely happen even though they tell their supporters that it will absolutely never happen and they're dead-set against it for reasons of principle.

    The obvious case being made here is that the pro-open borders crowd are either lying to us, or lying to their supporters, or perhaps even both. They won't compromise, and we know this because they've been given the chance to compromise and instead did exactly what they wanted and shot the other side the finger after getting what they wanted.

    No thanks. A million legal immigrants every year seems like it's already a pretty high level.

    The obvious solution to illegal immigration is strange labor regulations up to and including the minimum wage, but strangely Americans aren't interested in losing all their labor protections for the sake of illegal immigrants. That people like Dalmia charge forward with it anyway is likely because they don't feel that their jobs will be threated by low-cost immigrant labor, or think that American labor regulations will be applied to illegal immigrants which perversely removes all demand for them.

    It would be amusing, if it wasn't so depressingly retarded.

  • BYODB||

    *strangle labor regulations, not strange. =/

  • John||

    Doing this is so popular the Democrats refused to do it despite having Congress and the White House for two years.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    It bothers me, that the Republicans doing it is seen as untrustworthy. But the continued inaction on Democrats parts is consider to be a part of some higher ideals or some shit.

  • John||

    Both parties know it is unpopular. If it were popular, they would have passed it.

  • MJBinAL||

    BINGO!

  • Sigivald||

    "That's different because shut up."

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Modern Left: "The national wealth belongs collectively to the people. Only the government, serving the will of the majority, should decide who is entitled to a fair share of the wealth."

    Modern Right: "The national property belongs collectively to the people. Only the government, serving the will of the majority, should decide who is entitled to come and go."

  • hello.||

    Modern crypto-communist: "Here is an absurd analogy comparing two utterly incongruous things. I hope nobody will notice what a retarded state-worshipping bootlicker I am"

    The "national wealth" does not belong to the government. "National property" does. Do you understand or should I talk slower?

    The portion fo the "national wealth" owned by the government due to confiscation is subject to politics the same way the "national property" owned by the government is. Do you understand or should I talk slower?

  • BYODB||

    How does emigration fit into your narrative, exactly?

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    People should be free to come and go as they please.

  • hello.||

    What if your illiterate Mexican gardener finds out you're a raging homosexual and refuses to serve you?

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Quiet, the adults are talking.

  • BYODB||

    But since they are not, and the reason why often has zero to do with American immigration or emigration policy, then what?

    Notably, the historical answer is 'war' which is perfectly justified under the NAP as it is, according to you, a flagrant violation of people's (not just citizens!) natural rights.

    Thus, Jeff, while you might not consider yourself a useful idiot you're pushing your way into the front of the line of people who are insisting on international war. Kudos!

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Good Lord. No I am not advocating for war. I advocate for all governments to permit free movement of people and labor, peacefully.

  • BYODB||

    One of the few things more dangerous than a sophist is a true believer, I guess, but I suppose there's no rule that says a sophist can't believe the stuff they say.

    If or when the world matures and comes to rely solely on reason, maybe on that day you'll have your way. Until then, without a war to end all war, you're left with a Utopian view of society with the central flawed belief that man can be perfected. We can not be.

  • Mark22||

    I am not advocating for war. I advocate for all governments to permit free movement of people and labor, peacefully.

    And when "all governments" agree to that, then we can get rid of all borders.

    Until then, we set immigration and trade policies on a case-by-case basis.

  • Nardz||

    "People should be free to come and go as they please."

    Unless you're an anarchist and want to go back to "law of the jungle" you're effectively advocating for the world to be ruled as one territory (ie, one govt rule) - which is the most extreme collectivist view possible.
    Citizens of the world, unite!

  • BYODB||

    ^ This. People truly fail to understand what they advocate for.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    That about sums it up. It's why both major parties tend to fall on the authoritarian portion of the Nolan Chart.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Both tribes are collectivists at heart. The Left are economic collectivists. The Right are nationalist collectivists. They can both go to hell. While the Right has always been about effusive flag-waving, there was a time when I thought that the flag-waving was simply a demonstration of patriotism, not the core basis of its ideology. Guess I was wrong.

  • BYODB||

    One difference being that a 'nationalist' collectivism unites people whereas economic collectivists rends them apart, but nevermind that. We'll continue bashing 'nationalism' as if it's definitely always evil, I guess.

    This isn't a defense of nationalism, it's just curious what becomes a 'bad word' in the collective tongue. Five years ago no one thought nationalism was a big deal even while most people you'll meet probably believed America is the greatest country on Earth.

  • Mark22||

    The Right are nationalist collectivists.

    I'm a "nationalist individualist"; that is, I want to live in a nation that lets me live as an individualist. You are trying to destroy my ability to do so.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Bullshit. Nationalism IS a form of collectivism. Nationalism privileges phony "rights" of the collective ahead of individual liberty, it's just that in the case of nationalism, the collective consists of people sharing a certain citizenship. Unlike socialism, where the collective consists of people sharing the same social class. Or racial supremacism, where the collective consists of people sharing the same race.

    Genuine individualism recognizes the natural rights of ALL PEOPLE as being equal to your own. You aren't willing to do that. You privilege your natural rights ahead of those of others. You want your rights but you don't give a damn about the foreigners. That is what makes you a collectivist at heart. It is just the cherry on top that you are willing to invoke the same arguments and the same methods as every other collectivist movement in history to get your way.

  • Mark22||

    Chemjeff, unlike you, I actually grew up in a collectivist nation before legally immigrating to the US because it actually does support a reasonable degree of individualism. Hell will freeze over before I agree to letting ignorant assholes like you turn the US into a collectivist nation.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    How am I advocating for collectivism? I am not. You are the collectivist here, not me. You are the one who wants to sacrifice individual liberty on the altar of nationalist 'group rights'.

  • retiredfire||

    What could be more collectivist than to say there should be no borders?
    Everyone is a "world citizen" and can come and go as one pleases?
    Except for the fact that civilizations have come to the realization that there needs to be some order, and that some form of government is required to maintain that order.
    Then there is the fact that the various cultures and ethnicities have different ideas on how that should be done.
    Thus we divide ourselves into nation/states and those within, must come to some kind of consensus as to how they want their society run and who we should include. Inherent in that is some form of restrictions on complete liberty, or the whole thing breaks down.
    American "libertarians" are supposed to have accepted the boundaries set by the Constitution, yet rail against laws that conform to it - immigration and naturalization - and embrace those that don't - almost every progressive policy, most recently homosexual "marriage".

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Sometimes Shikha writes really well with great explanations and insight. This is one of those cases, and it is no coincidence that it is full of actual facts instead of just rants.

  • John||

    What facts are there? Other than stating the obvious that the bill needs to pass both the house and senate and be signed by the President, there isn't a single fact in there I can see. The rest is just a mix of baseless assertions, careless slander, and wishful thinking.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Guess you can't read. She presents plenty of actual facts on how these particular bills operate; if your bigotry and statism blind you to such simple things, well, your less, not mine. And if your bigotry only sees baseless assertions, careless slander, and wishful thinking, I suggest that is all you are capable of in your own writing.

  • hello.||

    "I know you are but what am I"

    Bravo.

  • John||

    She presents plenty of actual facts on how these particular bills operate;

    She says virtually nothing about that. Mostly it is about how horrible anyone who doesn't want these bills are. And even the "facts" she gives about the bills are just an explanation of how any attempt at compromise is just horrible. Why is asking for a decrease in legal immigration in return for DACA so bad? It isn't. Dalmia only says it is because she is a mindless fanatic who will accept nothing short of completely open borders.

  • hello.||

    Lol. Gotta get you some of that sweet immigrant pussy right buddy? Here's a tip. Shikha has the papers already so it's gonna cost you more than the fiver that it does behind the 7-11

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    Typical bigoted troll, can respond except by tired old jokes. Had any original thoughts recently?

  • hello.||

    I think you mean "can't". Regurgitate me some more Cato immigration talking points. I could use some of that signature originality.

  • hello.||

    Oh also I prefer "racist" not "bigoted". Please respect my choice of pronouns when you're searching through your rolex of ad homs to substitute for an argument.

  • hello.||

    *rolodex. Autocorrect is a millennial I guess.

  • Set Us Up The Chipper||

    If I were emperor, I would enact some form of amnesty in exchange documentation and no federally funded welfare of any kind. Then I would make it easier to get in for a work Visa but still document with the hard stance on welfare. In fact, I might build a bunch of gates instead of walls.

  • MJBinAL||

    If I were emperor, I would create a DM zone on the southern AND northern borders and fill them with mines. Then I would send every employer who hired illegals, every landlord who sheltered them, and every misguided progressive puke who whined about it to jail.

    Sorry, I am not usually like this, but seems you folks talk to each other in an echo chamber so much, you seem to get the idea that your ideas are popular.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    We should have created a string of unincorporated territories along our southern border 150 years ago, rather than enabling the Civil War's losers to resume statehood without penalty.

    Imagine an America with no senator from Alabama, no electoral vote from South Carolina, no representative from Mississippi. Progress, education, and morality would have developed more quickly throughout America's southern region, I believe, if the United States government had been administering territories rather than observing states' rights. The Puerto-Rico-like territories along our southern flank would provide defensive cover without constituting such a moral, political, economic, and educational drag and stain on our society. They might even have improved enough by now to deserve statehood.

    America has encountered and overcome at least a dozen waves of ignorance and intolerance often related to immigration, skin color, economic pressure (perceived, at least), or religion. Those voices have never prevailed over time in America, and the latest batch of bigots seems nothing special to me. Immigration has been fuel for American progress and will continue to be a source of strength for the United States.

    America's mainstream does not hate, fear, or resent immigrants. The Hastert Rule and our system's structural amplification of rural voices have enabled authoritarians and xenophobes to create mischief, but that seems destined to end soon enough.

  • Mark22||

    Imagine an America with no senator from Alabama, no electoral vote from South Carolina, no representative from Mississippi. Progress, education, and morality would have developed more quickly throughout America's southern region, I believe

    I agree! All those racist, progressive, Democratic assholes (like you, for example) would have stayed where they belong.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "I don't like government of, by, and for the people because I hate the people and want my kind to rule them by force"

  • retiredfire||

    So, once Old Honest Abe killed off 600,000+ Americans "to preserve the Union" he should have dismantled it?
    By the way, a recent poll asking if immigration positively or negatively affects one's life came back with a majority of all ethnic groups answering on the side of negatively.
    How you want to equate that with hatred, fear or resentment doesn't change that they don't like it.

  • MJBinAL||

    Oh damn. Somebody spread more Shikma all over. It stinks, leaves ugly brown stains, and is very unsanitary.

    Seriously, here is a surprise for you. Most citizens do not want a broad DACA bill. It is a LOSER at the polls. Oh I know, when you lie to them, tell them it only impacts a small number of people, poor children ripped from a country they never knew to be brought here as toddlers to grow up here as Americans, people go AWWWWW and feel sorry for them.

    Then they find out there or a huge number of them and most of them came here as older teens and still barely speak english, and plan to use the new legal status to bring the rest of the extended family here, and people say HELL NO!

    And this is not just the reaction of "Conservatives" or "alt-righters" but that of most of the country and even a substantial portion of Democrats.

  • Dillinger||

    if they were better congressmen they wouldn't be up against it

  • Bubba Jones||

    Maybe if we ended the drug war, Mexico wouldn't be such a shithole and we wouldn't have so many people moving here illegally.

  • buybuydandavis||

    Mexico would be less of a shithole, but that the nonAnglo conquered lands of the new world never matched the peace, prosperity, and freedom of the Anglo conquered lands is not all the fault of the evil Anglos.

    Most of the world is like that, or worse.

  • Mark22||

    But why is Ryan going to such great lengths to thwart a cause that he is openly sympathetic to?

    Because he, unlike you, understands that granting legal status to DACA recipients is a losing issue for Republicans: it won't mollify Democrats or keep them at home, but it will anger a large portion of the Republican base.

    But it is terribly myopic to set the policy of a party based on the whims of a capricious president.

    So true! Fortunately, unlike his capricious predecessor, Trump is restoring the rule of law and, for better or for worse, actually fulfilling his campaign promises.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Because he, unlike you, understands that granting legal status to DACA recipients is a losing issue for Republicans"

    I expected him to do his best to sabotage Republicans. And there's still time for it.

  • Kazinski||

    The reason Ryan isn't facilitating the amnesty bill is that it would cripple his last hopes to be president. The last thing he wants is to see the house flip to the Democrats when he retires which would end up being the result.

  • DrHubert||

    Stop WITH the false

    only reason DACA & ILKEGALS (total of 3,000,000) are not on their way to U.S. CITIZENSHIP was DEMS refusal of Trump's

    This included their immediate (mom, dad, & brothers/sisters) family

    MSM & DEMS ARE SHAMELESS

  • vek||

    We should not legalize the Dreamers. This is just going to send the message that we'll endlessly grant amnesty to any fuck wad who shows up here and doesn't get caught for a long enough period of time. Dreamers are statistically VERY sub par people. They have lower HS graduation rates than native born Americans. They go to college less frequently than BLACK AMERICANS! They are not impressive, and America does not need 1.5 million more low skill dildos here.

    As for the tweaks Trump wants... Having a skills based system where people actually have to be net positive tax payers is sooo horrible! Ending the diversity lottery is being literally Hitler! Because letting in some random Nigerian with a 4th grade education makes sooo much more sense than letting in an Indian doctor, a Japanese scientist, or a German engineer! We don't want THOSE types coming in, we just want to allow in completely random ass people because they're NOT WHITE. That makes tons of sense.

    All the shit he wants is perfectly sensible. I wouldn't mind keeping the cap at around 1 million a year, IF they were all skilled. But I don't have a problem with it getting cut either. More people in the USA DOES NOT automatically do ANYTHING good for American citizens. Higher per capita income, lower taxes, lower crime etc are things that are good for citizens... Not one of those things is helped by simply adding more random people into the country, but all COULD be helped by only letting in CERTAIN types of people.

  • Harvard||

    If only I could have been with Shecky Dullmia, in her living room, square in front of the big screen, jumbo tub of theater popcorn, case of Miller Lite, on election night. With cameras in the living rooms of Chapman, Gillespie and Old Beaner for amusing viewing later.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online