So, Who Was Right On Illegal Immigration?

Long before the GOP alienated:  its : base, killed:  its : fundraising, tore the party apart, and sealed:  its : doom in the 2008 elections by backing yet another amnesty bill in 2007, conservatives like me were begging them, pleading with them, to take a security first position.

Why? It made sense. It was popular with the general public and it would have been a compromise that would have avoided the knock down, drag out fight between the pro-amnesty and anti-amnesty factions of the GOP base.

For example, here’s what I was plugging back in May of 2007,

So, let’s talk about that a little bit: my ideal position would include cutting off federal funds to states with sanctuary cities, denying illegals any service in the US other than emergency medical care, long prison terms for people or businesses who knowingly hire illegals, and no illegal aliens being allowed to legally stay in the United States for any purpose, including a guest worker program.

Since that’s the case, what’s a genuine “meeting in the middle” have to entail?

* Security first. That means a wall fully built, the border patrol gotten up to full strength, and a workable, verifiable system with strong penalties for preventing employers from hiring illegals would have to occur first, before I’d consider any guest worker program or normalization of illegals.

* No citizenship, tax breaks, tuition benefits, legal help or anything else for illegal aliens. If they want to leave the country and put in an application from there, while they wait in line for a few years outside the country like everyone else, that’s fine, but any provision that allows illegal aliens to apply for citizenship from the United States is unacceptable.

* We need a provision — and I do think it is constitutional, by the way — that denies citizenship to children born in this country of two illegal parents. When foreign diplomats have kids here, their children aren’t American citizens and it should be the same for illegals. We should also prevent anyone caught sneaking into the country, overstaying their visa, or caught in the country illegally from ever legally visiting, becoming a citizen, or participating in a guest worker program.

If you put all those things in place and then wanted to come up with a plan to keep the illegals that are already here as guest workers, TEMPORARILY, then my ears would be open because that would be a real compromise between the “Americans first” position on illegal immigration and the comprehensive immigration plan.

You can quibble with this provision or that provision, but:  the:  idea was to have security first, which is popular, and then, once that’s handled, we could revisit the amnesty issue. Granted, there will still probably be large disagreements at that point, but if the security’s in place and if attrition by enforcement has forced a few million more illegals out of the country, then a lot of the venom would probably be sucked out of the debate. That would be good for the country.

The reason I point this out now is because this has essentially become the default position of the Republican:  Party. John McCain pledged to support a security first position when he ran for President. Lindsey Graham, who’s the biggest Republican supporter of amnesty in the Senate, : is now saying he supports a security first position,

It is impossible for me and any other serious Democrat to get this body to move forward until we prove to the American people we can secure our borders.

Now Lamar Alexander, who’s a member of the GOP Senate Leadership, : is saying the same thing:

When the border’s secure, then we can deal with people illegally here, and how they become citizens or not.

I point this out because many of the GOP politicians in DC, their staffers, and their consultants finally seem to have reached the same unanimous conclusion that conservatives online did 3-4 years ago. With that, among many, many : other things we’ve gotten right in mind, they should start to pay “just this much” attention to what conservatives in the new media are telling them. It would be quite beneficial.

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