After a day of travel to the SF Bay Area (note to file: marketplace is already saturated with “Impeach Bush” stickers), it seems the GOP candidates have been busy. Jonathan Martin has an excellent recap over the rivalry between Rudy and Romney over Club for Growth reviews — Romney’s mixed (although team Romney’s emails edit out the bad parts) and Rudy’s from earlier in the year more glowing. Will Club for Growth endorse Rudy? I’m betting yes, unless Fred makes it too close to call. Next, immigration battles continue. Team Rudy responded to the new Romney ad with a “fact check” including some familar arguments ( e.g. four sanctuary cities in MA, New York City never “officially declared itself a sanctuary city,” and Romney’s didn’t “deputize” his troops until he headed out the door and the plan was never implemented.) They did include one new tidbit: Romney claimed in a Fox interview that governors didn’t act against sanctuary cities (“But governors don’t do that. There’s no governor in America that’s done [that], ever.”) No quite right. Bill Owens in Colorado passed legislation to require local and state officials to report illegals and threatened to pull funding from sanctuary cities and Pete Wilson in California banned sanctuary ordinances. Kate O’Beirne and I don’t get why Romney picked this particular issue. Since there’s plenty of ammunition going the other way it seems a wash at best. The better test: who has the most credible plan and what do the candidates plan to do with existing illegals. Rudy’s teams says Romney in a 2005 interview advocated that they only “register with the government, work for years, pay taxes, not take public benefits and pay a fine before applying for citizenship” although he now talks only about the natural attrition of illegals after the borders are closed and employer sanctions go into effect. Rudy’s guru is noncommittal, only saying we need to plug the leak in the boat. Fodder for the debate on September 5 in New Hampshire.
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