Commentary by Daniel T. Zanoza, Executive Director
It is perhaps the hottest topic in politics today. Sure, the dominant media will try to play up the shaky economy, in order to help bolster the chances of Democrats at the polls come November and the war in Iraq, though less of a political football of late, is certainly important, but illegal immigration, by far, is the most controversial subject in America today.
Depending on which poll one may read, an overwhelming majority of Americans believe the flow of illegal immigrants into the nation via our border with Mexico must be stopped. In addition, many Americans detested the idea of "amnesty" for illegal immigrants and those views were made crystal clear when the U.S. Senate tried to ram Comprehensive Immigration Reform down the throats of us all in 2007. It was a proud moment. Average citizens stood up and said "no!" to Republicans who wanted to give big business a cheap labor force and Democrats who wanted to pad their voting rolls by giving citizenship to the over 12 million illegal immigrants who are now in the country.
Even Sen. John McCain said he "got it," though it's not clear what Mr. McCain "got". When asked during a Republican presidential debate whether he would sign the bill named after him (McCain-Kennedy) that would have given "amnesty" to illegals, McCain simply said, "no, the bill will never come up again." This comment hardly instills confidence in those who are wondering if he really did "get" the message.
But McCain is the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee. He says he understands that the American people want the border with Mexico secured first. For those of us who remember, "it depends on what your definition of 'is' is," McCain's comments are hardly encouraging. He didn't say he would secure the border. He merely said he understood the American people wanted the border secured. Catch the difference? McCain knows what he's talking about. In reality, his political speak may have revealed his true intentions.
On the Democratic side, those who want sanity regarding border security are out of luck entirely. Hillary Rodham Clinton first said she agreed with New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer when he ordered that state to issue driver's licenses to illegals. Even the Democrats didn't like that. The former First Lady quickly changed her position on Spitzer's plan and said she no longer supported the issuance of driver's licenses to those who entered this country by violating the law. It was the beginning of Hillary's political slide--from which she is still trying to recover. However, to be sure, Mrs. Clinton would favor "the road to citizenship" for illegal immigrants who are already here and, most likely, for millions more that would be soon to follow.
While Mrs. Clinton was taking a beating regarding her position on driver's licenses for New York illegals, Sen. Barack Hussein Obama was kicking back. You see, the media paid little attention to the fact Mr. Obama favors licenses for illegals. People like Chris Matthews (Hardball--MSNBC) were too busy crying because they were so deeply touched after Obama's speeches to criticize the junior senator from Illinois' position on illegal immigration. Therefore, Obama got a pass on the issue and has had one until this day.
The only candidate out of the final four who said he would build a fence along our border with Mexico and try to send some of the 12 million illegals home, Mile Huckabee, is now out of the race. That means many millions of Americans will, for lack of a better term, get the shaft when it comes to illegal immigration.
How did this happen? Why did the subject of illegal immigration fall off the radar screen in both Parties? Well, during the debates, the liberal media didn't press Democrats on the issue of illegal immigration, after Mrs. Clinton's faux pas over Spitzer's proposal.
On the Republican side, self-proclaimed conservatives--like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham--were too busy trying to influence the election. While doing so, they allowed McCain to slip in the back door and win the GOP's presidential nomination; something they helped bring to pass, but are not happy with.
If you're scratching your head right about now, I'm right there with you. If you thought the fight for sanity was won last year, get ready for round two because no matter which Party's candidate wins in November, the real winners will likely be illegal immigrants. Good grief!
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