Rookie Florida Senator Marco Rubio continues to work tirelessly to get the United States to annex Mexico, though an exhaustive (and exhausting) search of his 2010 election campaign reveals no promises to do, nor even a mention that he might consider doing such an outlandish thing. Au the contraire, the pre-election Rubio said all the right things about line-cutters and lawbreakers. That’s one of the reasons he’s a senator today.
There are only two sure consequences of the current 800-page immigration hairball before Congress. The first is that a minimum of 11 million citizens of other countries, more Mexicans than anyone else, will become permanent, undeportable residents of the U.S., and can immediately begin working to get all their relations here. Second, the bill, if we are foolish enough to pass it, would create a powerful incentive for millions more south of the border to come here once word gets around that if you can sneak into El Norte now, you’re here to stay.
None of the other stuff will happen – the sweeteners that open-borders advocates are buffaloing the marks with: border security, back taxes, fines, no welfare, English proficiency. These things won’t happen because we lack both the bureaucratic infrastructure and the political will to do them.
One party doesn’t want to do these things, or anything else that would staunch the flow of undocumented Democrats into El Norte and thereby into American voting booths. A disturbingly high fraction of the other party will not oppose this invasion and capitulation of sovereignty because they are terrified of being called anti-Hispanic. Of course, insisting on sovereignty, enforceable borders, and standards for citizenship is not anti-anyone. But that’s not the way it will be played by the media, Democrats, and various Hispanic indignation groups.
The Democrats whooping up “comprehensive reform” know this. So do the Republicans in the so-called gang of eight (one of whom is appropriately enough named Flake). Worst of all, so does Marco Rubio. We’ve all seen Marco on television. He’s a very intelligent, articulate guy with much wider knowledge and analytical powers than 90+ percent of politicians. He’s a sound conservative on so many other issues. But on this one he’s badly wrong, and clearly not dumb enough to believe the things he’s saying. The melancholy but unavoidable conclusion is that Rubio is being dishonest on this issue. The puzzler is why. Dick Durbin and Chuck Schumer are doubtless covered with bruises from pinching themselves daily, unable to believe they have such a high-octane, conservative champion flogging their transparent, leftist hustle.
The foolish things Rubio has recently said about immigration are almost endless, but some of the most knee-slappingly absurd are:
“We have to do something, because what we have now is amnesty.”
No, Marco. What we have now is not amnesty. What we have now is a refusal of the current administration to enforce existing immigration laws (as previous administrations have refused to enforce them) and a willingness to sue anyone who tries to do anything about border crashers. There is no urgency to pass new laws that Obama and Associates will ignore, or turn to their advantage.
“We can’t round up and deport 11 million people here illegally.”
So who said we could? I’ve never heard anyone advocate for a deadline on saying adios to 11 million citizens of other countries here illegally. But if we had the will to do so, we could deport a large percentage of these gate-crashers, and at less expense than all the finding, fining, taxing, penalizing, English testing et al. the current bill’s supporters say they want to do. And why should the threat of being deported be removed from people here illegally while others wait to become Americans the right way?
Perhaps the most absurd things Rubio has had to say about the current legislation are various flute solos on how much all the new blood this “reform” would lead to would help invigorate the American economy. If we adopt this anti-sovereignty legislation, doubtless new Americans will include small numbers of physicians, engineers, scientists, skilled artisans, and entrepreneurs who will contribute to our economy. But these will be swallowed up by an army of unemployed and unemployable pool cleaners and leaf-blower operators, illiterate or semi-literate in two languages, who will cost far more in public services than they will pay in taxes. Anyone seeking to establish how these folks, regardless of how much sympathy we may have for their plight, could invigorate the economy of a dead-broke welfare state already groaning with unemployed and with hardly any available billets for unskilled workers, has one hell of a hill to climb.
But just because an assertion is absurd on its face is no reason it won’t attract defenders if the price or the politics are right. In recent weeks Rubio’s office has been firing off press releases daily trumpeting the comprehensive wonderfulness of immigration reform. One of Thursday’s shouted: “Conservative Economists Back Immigration Reform.”
The conservative economists in this case were being spoken for by something called the American Action Forum. AAF’s president is Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former director of the Congressional Budget Office and advisor to Sen. John McCain, one of the authors and chief boosters of the “We Don’t Need No Stinking Borders Act of 2007,” which Americans rightly shouted down.
“It [the current legislation] is an opportunity to improve the long-term prospects for economic growth, enhance the skills of the U.S. labor force, and augment the flexibility of the nation’s labor market,” Holtz-Eakin said in a letter signed by 111 economists.
No, it’s not you. I can’t connect those dots either.
Certainly Social Security could do with more contributors. How else are Baby Boomers to pay their greens fees? And America’s birth rate may be below the level required to furnish sufficient taxpayers for future decades. But ushering a fraction of the third world into America will make these problems worse, not better.
The preposterous assertions of Holtz-Eakin and his house economists put me in mind of P.J. O’Rourke’s insightful explanation of the difference between micro- and macro-economics, which I paraphrase here from memory: “Micro-economics are things economists are specifically wrong about, while macro-economics are things economists are wrong about in a general sort of way.”
Speaking of way, Rubio has certainly lost his in this matter. And has almost certainly lost all prospects of ever claiming possession of the key to the Oval Office washroom.
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