Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Game Changer

Kos predicts:

Arizona Latinos have gone, literally overnight, from being perhaps the most pro-GOP in the nation, to joining California as the most anti-GOP ones in the nation...Within a decade, Arizona will be as reliably Democratic as California is today. And when that day arrives, we'll be able to trace it all to last Friday's passage of SB 1070.

Kurtz (TPM): McCain Hurtin' In Arizona
John McCain's approval rating has plummeted into deep negative territory in the latest poll out of Arizona. I mean really bad.
mistermix: Dead To Her
...let’s talk about my Mother. She’s 74 years old, brown (US citizen from Mexican parents), and tough as nails. She spends her winters in a small town near Tucson, a few miles from where she grew up.

Since the Arizona immigration law passed, I’ve been thinking about what’s going to happen the first time she’s pulled over and asked for her papers. The results of my thought experiment aren’t pretty. To say that she’ll be unintimidated by the local cops is a gross understatement. My concern is for the officer who pulls her over, as well as the police department and town that she’ll sue. Life gets a little dull for the retired, and the family joke is that Mom has a titanium grudge carrier, so I expect she’ll do her part to bankrupt her local municipality, and enjoy doing it.

Mom’s a proud Goldwater Republican. She was happy with Reagan, voted for Bush II in 2000 (but not in ‘04), and has long been active in the local Republican party. But I can say with absolute certainty that she will not vote for a Republican, for any office, ever again. She’s the proudest person I know—proud of her family, her achievements in life, and her Mexican heritage. And, whatever else this new law is, it is profoundly disrespectful. I don’t know if this law will kill the Republican party in Arizona, but I can assure you that they’re already dead to her.

In response to Arizona's draconian new immigration measure, Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) called for a boycott of his home state. Last night on Fox News, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) was asked if there's anything wrong with Grijalva's position. He replied:

"Well, it looks like the case is that, that he's trying to scare the businesses out of Arizona, or he's trying to get the businesses to change their position and press the legislature to reverse the law that was just signed by the governor the other day.

"I'm wondering if we look at the map of Congressman Grijalva's congressional district if we haven't already ceded that component of Arizona to Mexico judging by the voice that comes out of him, he's advocating for Mexico rather than the United States and against the rule of law, which is one of the central pillars of American exceptionalism." [emphasis added]

King could have been more direct and just called Grijalva a traitor.

And speaking of right-wing Iowans who hate immigrants, Pat Bertroche, a Republican congressional hopeful in Iowa's 3rd district, has his own unique approach to immigration.

"I think we should catch 'em, we should document 'em, make sure we know where they are and where they are going...I actually support microchipping them. I can micro-chip my dog so I can find it. Why can't I microchip an illegal? That's not a popular thing to say, but it's a lot cheaper than building a fence they can tunnel under."

I could have sworn far-right Republicans were against involuntary microchip implanation.

BarbinMD (dKos): Travel Alert

Official travel warnings normally run along the lines of don't go sailing off of Somalia or don't pack your bikini for that trip to Saudi Arabia ... now we have this:

The Mexican government warned its citizens Tuesday to use extreme caution if visiting Arizona because of a tough new law that requires all immigrants and visitors to carry U.S.-issued documents or risk arrest.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that this is the first time a foreign government has warned its citizens against visiting a state in our country.

Sully: Trying To Keep The Customers Satisfied

Hard to beat the glibertarian position on Arizona:

A reader says he’s suprised to see me support the Arizona bill. Well, I really don’t — that is, I don’t know if I’d have voted for it if I were in Arizona. I’m mostly reacting to the fact that — as demonstrated by Linda Greenhouse — the opposition displays that special combination of self-righteous outrage and bone-deep ignorance that really sets me off.

Just because someone to his left opposes something outrageous, Glenn Reynolds supports it. Kinda. But not really. Well, yes. It's pretty easy to push Reynolds around.

Marshall: Ahhh, Good Times

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) says he supports deporting American citizens whose parents are illegal immigrants.

You can see the video here.

You may be thinking of the old Duncan Hunter. But this is actually his son, who the old guy passed his seat to under congressional primogeniture rules.

  • Steve Benen adds:

    Let's be real clear about this. The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says that those "born ... in the United States" are "citizens of the United States." It also says that no state can "deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law."

    For that matter, the Supreme Court ruled in 1898 that a baby born in San Francisco to Chinese immigrants was legally a U.S. citizen, even though federal law at the time denied citizenship to people from China. The court said birth in the United States constituted "a sufficient and complete right to citizenship."

    What this Republican congressman is saying, then, is that he supports a policy wherein the U.S. government deports U.S. citizens based on their parents' immigration status.

    Even for the GOP, this is pretty nutty. Indeed, if American officials were planning to deport American citizens, where would the children be expected to go?

Steve Benen:

I rarely myself in agreement with Michael Gerson, but his column on immigration policy today noted a sentiment that I can strongly endorse: "The Arizona law -- like others before it -- does have one virtue. It sorts Republicans according to their political and moral seriousness."

It does, indeed. At this point, the serious GOP contingent is quite small, but it's slowly growing. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) criticized Arizona's awful new immigration law yesterday, and was soon followed by former DHS Secretary Tom Ridge and California gubernatorial hopeful Meg Whitman. Florida's Marco Rubio also doesn't care for the odious Arizona measure, and even former Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado believes it goes too far.

But all of those Republicans have one thing in common: none of them currently hold public office. How about actual GOP officeholders?

Amanda Terkel has been keeping track of Republican lawmakers who've stated their public position on Arizona's effort, and so far, only two GOP members -- Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart of Florida and Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina -- have been willing to criticize the state law.


Here's a thought: what about a non-binding resolution expressing a sense of Congress that the Arizona law is a legally-dubious travesty? Why not get every member of both chambers on the record?

Republicans tend to love pushing these kinds of resolutions, hoping to put Democrats on the spot. Perhaps Dems might be in the mood to turn the tables.

Sully: The Tea Party Agenda

Balko is uneasy:

I’d have no problem if the Tea Parties were merely silent on issues like foreign policy, law enforcement, and the war on terror—that is, if people who disagree on those particular issues had come together for the purpose of rallying against government debt, bailouts, spending, and so on. But it’s increasingly looking like the right’s favored big government policies are a fairly important part of the agenda of a fairly large portion of the Tea Party crowd. Advocating for more police power, more foreign policy imperialism, and more power for the federal government to detain, torture, and abrogate basic civil liberties sort of misses the entire message of the original Tea Party.

It also makes a mockery of the media narrative that these are gathering of anti-government extremists. Seems like in may parts of the country they’re as pro-government as the current administration, just pro-their kind of government.

I couldn't agree more. And how many tea-partiers favor the Arizona law? Almost all of them, you betcha.

Worse, on the fiscal front, they're total frauds. They have yet to propose any serious cuts in entitlements and want far more money poured into the military-imperial complex. In rallies, the largely white members in their fifties and older seem determined to get every penny of social security and Medicare. They are a kind of boomer revolt - but on the other side of that civil conflict, and no longer a silent majority. In fact, they're now the minority that won't shut up.

More and more, this feels to me like an essentially cultural revolt against what America is becoming: a multi-racial, multi-faith, gay-inclusive, women-friendly, majority-minority country. The "tea-party" analogy is not about restricting government as much as it is a form of almost pathological nostalgia. That's why there's much more lashing out than constructive proposals. And yes, a bi-racial president completes the picture. And no, that doesn't mean they're all racists. Discomfort with social and cultural change is not racism. But it can express itself that way.

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