GOP and Immigration
White People on Parade
It's an undeniable fact that immigration reform will create millions of Democrats. Will R's do it?
Let's face it. Just on the facts, Phyllis Schlafly is not incorrect to say that Mitt Romney lost because the white vote was down from 2008. She spoke on a right-wing radio show today, saying, via TPM:
"The Hispanics who have come in like this will vote Democrat and there's not the slightest bit of evidence that they will vote Republican," Schlafly said on "Focus Today." "And the people the Republicans should reach out to are the white votes, the white voters who didn't vote in the last election and there are millions of them."
Schlafly told PolicyMic she believes that Mitt Romney lost the 2012 presidential election because "his drop-off from white voters was tremendous" and the GOP doesn't "know how to relate to grassroots Americans."
"The propagandists are leading us down the wrong path," Schlafly said on the radio program. "There is not any evidence at all that these Hispanics coming in from Mexico will vote Republican."
First, on Romney: Sean Trende analyzed the numbers right after the voting (I did not agree with a lot of his analyses last fall, but numbers are numbers) and found that nearly 7 million fewer white people voted (while the raw numbers of blacks and Hispanics who voted had increased). Give Romney 69 percent of that 7 million, and you put Romney within about 700,000 instead of the 5 million he lost by. Under a million, all kinds of games can be played.
Now, as for the future, who can say she isn't right about that, too? I saw conservative GOP Congressman Tim Huelskamp quoted on Greg Sargent's blog the other day saying: “There is no evidence to support this idea that Republicans will pick up a lot of votes if we give amnesty to 11 million folks.”
There isn't. All this patooey about Latinos being "natural conservatives" is just talking points, and I think Reince Priebus knows that. The GOP presumably has numbers guys sitting over at the RNC who know with exceeding accuracy how many new voters this bill (if it passes) will produce by the 2024 election, and what (small) percentage of them is likely to be Republican.
The full Senate takes up the immigration bill the week after next. It appears that it will pass there. I was a skeptic, but lo and behold, the Judiciary Committee actually acted like the old Senate for a week. Leahy pulling the gay families measure was the right thing to do.
So it will then move to the House, and the thing to watch is whether or how deeply this view that they're granting amnesty to people who are just going to become loyal new Democrats takes root. That will detremine the anger level at the base, which will determine how afraid Republicans are to vote yes, which in turn will determine whether Boehner will feel he can let the bill pass with nearly 200 Democrats and just a few Republicans without that meaning he's essentially handed his job over to Eric Cantor.
The devil-on-my-shoulder part of me wants the Republicans to block it, because doing so more or less ensures that the GOP (at least as currently constituted) won't win a presidential election probably in my remaining lifetime, except in really extraordinary circumstances like a total economic collapse (of the sort that only Republicans have ever caused!). It'd serve 'em right.
But then the angel taps, and I am reminded that we're talking about actual people's lives here, and that if it doesn't happen now there probably won't be another shot for a generation, so yes, I hope they pass the bill.