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Tea Party Apparently Now Considers Stopping Immigration Reform Most Important Issue

Tea Party Immigration

The Tea Party, a loose organization of groups supposedly founded around the ideas of low taxes, smaller government, lower deficits, and opposition to the President’s health care reform plan, has apparently turned itself into an organization primarily concerned with blocking immigration reform:

Activists are promising to spend the congressional recess reminding lawmakers who support the Gang of Eight legislation what the base is capable of. Think loud town halls, jammed phone lines and primary challenges down the road — echoes of Obamacare three years ago.

“The anger is more intense now than it was in 2010,” said Judson Phillips, founder of Tea Party Nation. “They are more upset about the amnesty bill than they were about Obamacare.”

But conservatives aren’t united against immigration reform the same way they opposed Obamacare. Some tea party and GOP-affiliated groups including Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform, American Conservative Union and Faith and Freedom Coalition have expressed support for the Senate’s bill, while acknowledging that the House will have to make some changes. Another group, TheTeaParty.Net, is supporting efforts toward immigration reform, but not the Senate bill, based on concerns of whether how border security provisions will be enforced.

Still, the majority of conservative groups are looking to replicate protests of previous years driven by Obamacare, the 2008 financial bailout, the stimulus bill, cap-and-trade bill and other Obama administration policies, which propelled the Republican House takeover in 2010. But after seeing President Barack Obama win re-election last year and GOP senators negotiate with Democrats, part of what’s driving the tea party is disappointment with the result of their electoral efforts and disenchantment with the Washington crowd.

“Some of these people have been up there so long and have been insulated and live in this bubble and aren’t connected to to the real world,” said Amy Kremer, chairwoman of Tea Party Express. “It’s this attitude of: They know better.”

Former Rep. Allen West, who has hinted he might challenge Sen. Marco Rubio in 2016, pointed to hidden details in the Gang of Eight bill that could cause the conservative base to lose trust in their lawmakers.

“When you get down into it, you see a lot of waivers and sweeteners and then it’s politically driven,” West said.

Kremer predicted that Republican lawmakers will avoid public appearances and other opportunities that might lead to an earful from an angered conservative base when they go back home this summer. Taped town halls became a hallmark of politics in previous summers, as lawmakers were filmed facing angry crowds or uncomfortable questions on both policy and topics like Obama’s birth certificate.

Objectively speaking, it’s hard to see what opposition to immigration reform has to to with any of the supposed founding principles of the so-called Tea Party, which grew out of a commentary about mortgage bailouts by CNBC’s Rick Santelli that went viral on the Internet in a matter of hours in the first months of President Obama’s first year in office and morphed into a movement that was, at least according to its rhetoric, based on fiscal conservatism, liberty, and limited government. Where, exactly, does opposition to immigration reform fit into that mix? Quite honestly, I don’t see that it does. Of course, I’ve doubted for quite some time that the “Tea Party movement” is really anything more than another name for the base of the Republican Party. It may have been something different in the beginning, perhaps, but almost as soon as it began to take shape I began to hear reports from fellow libertarians that they were being shunned from the movement due to their unwillingness to sign on to the GOP agenda on issues like abortion and, indeed, immigration and to essentially agree in the end to become good little Republicans when election time came around.

At some point, then, the “Tea Party,” whatever it was, became nothing more than the activist wing of conservative groups, many of them based in Washington ironically, intent on pushing the Republican Party in a certain direction. The heavy involvement of groups like Freedomworks and Americans for Prosperity would seem to confirm that fact. Whatever concept that Tea Partiers had of being some independent political force died off long ago, they’re conservative Republican and, as such, its not at all surprising that they’re repeating the same old tired ideas about immigration that have been coming from that wing of the GOP since the last time we discussed immigration reform in this country.

As for the immigration issue itself, I’ve written elsewhere about the political forces competing for the attention of Republican politicians on that issue. This would be an example of the first force, the activist GOP base intent on punishing anyone who dares to stray from orthodoxy on an issue even where, as here, doing so makes sense not just for the country as a whole but for the GOP itself in the long run. We stand right now on the precipice where the fate of immigration reform, perhaps for the remainder of President Obama’s term, will be decided. If Republicans listen to the Tea Party and like-minded forces and block the bill, then they will be paying the political consequences of that decision for a long time. However, given the incentives they face, and the continued apparent power of “Tea Party” activists inside the GOP, it seems far more likely they will listen to them than that they will attempt to craft an immigration reform alternative that (1) actually solves the problems facing the country, and (2) has a chance of becoming law. Thus, in the end, the “Tea Party” is likely to end up harming the GOP far more than it would help it if the party becomes as intransigent on immigration as it has on other issues.

Photo via ABC News

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. michael reynolds says:

    Gosh, I’m having a really good day as a prophet.

    First we learn that (surprise!) the NSA isn’t alone in collecting electronic data. And now we have the shocking revelation that the Tea Party is really just a bunch of old racists.

    Add this to earlier prophesyin’ that Snowden would become the issue and be seen increasingly as an a-hole (see polls out today), and on predicting the abject failure of the GOP rebranding, and the fact that the Libya “war” did not become a quagmire for Americans, and the fact that the Benghazi hysteria went nowhere, and Mitt Romney lost largely because he was an unlikable dick (and I had that two years out), and I am well ahead of Nostradamus.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 55 Thumb down 7

  2. anjin-san says:

    “They are more upset about the amnesty bill than they were about Obamacare.”

    Ah, they hate Mexicans more than they hate hospitals!

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 38 Thumb down 9

  3. Ron Beasley says:

    Although the Tea Party foot soldiers talked about smaller government and Obama Care It was always about bigotry – a black president. They saw their white anglo world going away right before their eyes.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 52 Thumb down 9

  4. Kate says:

    It’s disappointing to see that OTB has become a mere shadow of its former self. Sorry, James.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 48

  5. anjin-san says:

    Of course the tea types badly need to change the conversation, as it turns out Obama is doing a good job of deficit reduction. We certainly can’t talk about that, can we?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 2

  6. anjin-san says:

    @ Kate

    What’s wrong Kate? Too many informed people for your taste?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 42 Thumb down 3

  7. Dan says:

    Is there a real valid reason the tea party is against immigration reform or they have, like all conservatives, arbitrarily decided that they are against immigration reform because democrats are in favor of it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2

  8. michael reynolds says:

    @Dan:

    Come now, Dan. What color are the immigrants in question? And what color are the Tea Partiers?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 4

  9. Thus, in the end, the “Tea Party” is likely to end up harming the GOP far more than it hurts it if it becomes as intransigent on immigration as it has on other issues.

    Double high five for putting “Tea Party” in quotes.

    When my nephew was little, he tied a sheet around his neck, held his arms in front of him, and said, “Look, uncle, I can fly.” I played along with it because, you know, he was a kid.

    It’s been much more challenging playing along with grown-up Republicans and their playtime “political party.”

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 3

  10. Pinky says:

    It’s pretty sickening that the commenters here can’t approach this question without making it about accusations of racism.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 44

  11. stonetools says:

    We have always been at war with East Asia.

    Of course, I’ve doubted for quite some time that the “Tea Party movement” is really anything more than another name for the base of the Republican Party

    BINGO!
    They’ve now gotten new orders from their masters in the Republican Party. Before it was “Stop the Ni$#er in the White House!” Now its “Stop the Browns.”
    What’s astonishing is that libertarians believed it ever had to do the with just limited government and taxes. From August 2009 they were already talking a lot about abortions.
    The Tea Party was ALWAYS about returning things to 1950, when Anglos were in charge, women were subordinate, and minorities knew their place. Glad you libertarians are finally catching up.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 3

  12. michael reynolds says:

    @Pinky:

    You notice how no one ever says we need a wall and an alligator-filled moat and armed men and B-52’s on the Canadian border?

    There is a different, much less publicized form of illegal immigrant—the kind coming from Canada. Many of these individuals are not Latin American—U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have apprehended border jumpers from Albania, The Czech Republic, Israel, and India—and the often cross the many waterways of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and New York by boat, jet ski, or by swimming.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 3

  13. Gromitt Gunn says:

    @Pinky: You probably should go back to letting The Brain do all the talking for the both of you.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 36 Thumb down 2

  14. Anderson says:

    Oh come now, why do you think the original Boston Tea Party dressed up as Indians? OBVIOUSLY they were protesting any more Brits’ coming over here!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  15. @Pinky:

    It’s pretty sickening that the commenters here can’t approach this question without making it about accusations of racism.

    Would it sting less if we flung around accusations of stupidity?

    (For what it’s worth…you’ll have to forgive us for having an impression that there’s a racist strain in the “Tea Party.” It’s just that –well– we’ve read their clever little signs.)

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 2

  16. anjin-san says:

    @ Pinky

    It’s pretty sickening that the commenters here can’t approach this question without making it about accusations of racism.

    Why yes, it’s far more offensive than the actual racism…

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 2

  17. Pinky says:

    @michael reynolds: You answered that question yourself: the visibility of the problem. There are around 10x as many Mexican illegal immigrants in the US as Canadian. If 5 million people show up in Michigan who only speak French, I think you’ll hear an outcry.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 17

  18. Andre Kenji says:

    @stonetools:

    The Tea Party was ALWAYS about returning things to 1950,

    No, there was no Medicare in 1950´s.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 1

  19. Woody says:

    @Andre Kenji:

    Yes – by repackaging.

    “Tea Party” is nothing more than the New Coke John Birch Society.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 0

  20. CSK says:

    The name “Tea Party” has become a catch-all term for any far right-wing cause under the sun. There are anti-abortion Tea Parties. There are anti-gay marriage Tea Parties. The group calling itself the Tea Party Patriots refused to endorse Mitt Romney on the grounds that he was far too left-wing. The movement–if it can be called that–devolved into a bunch of fringe groups fighting about which of them reigns supreme.

    The supreme irony is that the candidates they once adored and backed–Kelly Ayotte, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul–have all become anathema to them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  21. John H says:

    @Pinky:

    Not to worry Pinky. We don’t want Michigan.

    We want Florida.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  22. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @michael reynolds: I gave you a thumbs up just for general dickishness. ;-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  23. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Pinky:

    It’s pretty sickening that the commenters here can’t approach this question without making it about accusations of racism.

    It’s pretty sickening that you can’t see the blatant racism within the tea party. By the way, what’s up with that?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 2

  24. michael reynolds says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    It’s what I do best.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

  25. @Pinky:

    You answered that question yourself: the visibility of the problem. There are around 10x as many Mexican illegal immigrants in the US as Canadian.

    Complain about accusations of racism, then call millions of brown Spanish-speakers a “problem…..”

    Yeah, really making your point, bud.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 3

  26. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Pinky:

    If 5 million people show up in Michigan who only speak French, I think you’ll hear an outcry.

    OK, now you’re just being stupid. Ontario is north of Michigan. If you want to hear French speaking illegal immigrants you have to head for New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 2

  27. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @michael reynolds:

    It’s what I do best.

    I like to think that you do it so I don’t have to.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  28. al-Ameda says:

    Just look at the Tea Party rally – and look at all those Black, Brown, Latino, and Asian faces. What a diverse White crowd – there are White men and White women – did I leave anything out?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 3

  29. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    The signs on the New Hampshire border read: “Welcome to New Hampshire. Bienvenue au New Hampshire.”

    I should add that many French Canadians like to vacation, perfectly legally, in NH. I’m sure their business is welcome.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  30. superdestroyer says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I wonder how many of the guys hanging out in front of the 7-11 looking for day labor work are from Albania or India?

    Why don’t you do what you always ask of others and provide a cite for how many people are entering the U.S illegally from Canada. I cannot remember when the phone tree service offered Albania or Urdu as a choice.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 24

  31. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK:

    The signs on the New Hampshire border read: “Welcome to New Hampshire. Bienvenue au New Hampshire.”

    OH MY DOG!!!! FRENCH IN AMERICA??? THE OUTRAGE!! THE HORROR!!! Oh wait a minute… what’s that you say? They’re white? Oh well, in that case, never mind. (a laborer buddy of mine has an ‘English Only’ sticker on his hard hat, never mind, you don’t want to hear about our conversations)

    Funny thing is, here where I live in Washington Co MO, at least half the place names are French in origin. Of course, none of them are pronounced anything like they would be in France. Courtois? Coataway. Fourche au Renault? Forshana. Hell, the county seat is Potosi. (sounds suspiciously a lot like San Luis Potosi… Dirty Mexicans, it’s a CONSPIRACY!!!)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  32. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @superdestroyer:

    I wonder how many of the guys hanging out in front of the 7-11 looking for day labor work are from Albania or India?

    Why would they be looking for day labor work? They’re all on welfare.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  33. anjin-san says:

    I wonder how many of the guys hanging out in front of the 7-11 looking for day labor

    Yea, they are out looking for work while your average no account Obama hater is sitting at home, collecting benefits, watching Fox, and getting drunk on beer and cheap vodka.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 3

  34. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    O/T: today the prosecution rested in the Zimmerman trial, the judge rejected the pro forma defense request for a directed verdict, and the defense called its first two witnesses.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 23

  35. superdestroyer says:

    @anjin-san:

    I remember in 2004 when progressives keep repeating the talking point that all the Republicans have is fear and hatred Now in 2013, it seems all progressives have is encouraging fear of an irrelevant Republican Party and hatred of everyone who will not repeat the politically correct talking points.

    Image how boring politics will be in the future one party state where the weekly two-minute-hate is used to keep everyone in line.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 16

  36. anjin-san says:

    @ Jenos

    You laid down a pretty heavy whine earlier today about people not waiting for the “appropriate” thread to talk about the trial. You might practice what you preach, but I guess you just can’t refrain from talking about your hero.

    One can almost picture Jenos, alone, in his small, sparsly furnished apartment in Anytown, USA. He is practicing his Snoopy dance, preparing for the possibility of a Zimmermann acquittal. “You can’t touch this” is played over and over on a cheap stereo.

    When life’s pleasures are few, one has to take whatever small victories that may come along. So he prepares for “the day” – a day that, should it come to pass, will no doubt be one of the greatest of his life.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2

  37. Tillman says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: Wow, way to go off-topic completely.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  38. superdestroyer says:

    IT is amazing that immigration is described as a problem for the country but every solution always works out as a great benefit for the illegal aliens. No one ever discusses the problems that American citizens experience due to illegal immigraiton such as higher unemloyment, lower wages, more failed neighborhoods, more expensive housing in the neighborhoods without the illegal aliens, more uninsured drivers, inability to communicate with employees or workers, emergency rooms going broke, and a lower quality of life for many Americans.

    Yet, everyone keeps telling the Republicans to shut up and endure the U.S. becoming a one party state, fast tracking 20 million illegal aliens to citizenship, a massive increase in legal immigration, and an increase in H1B visas.

    When people like Jeb Bush and President Obama are telling Americans that they are too lazy to do blue collar work and too stupid for high tech work, maybe it should be understandable that some of them are angry for reasons other than race.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 10

  39. Tillman says:

    @anjin-san:

    Of course the tea types badly need to change the conversation, as it turns out Obama is doing a good job of deficit reduction. We certainly can’t talk about that, can we?

    To be fair, Obama gets half the credit while a Republican-dominated House that suddenly discovered the deficit could be a bad thing gets the other half.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  40. al-Ameda says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    O/T: today the prosecution rested in the Zimmerman trial, the judge rejected the pro forma defense request for a directed verdict, and the defense called its first two witnesses.

    Why is it that all you can talk about is the Zimmerman trial?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  41. Anderson says:

    It would be nice to see a few Canadian restaurants here in Mississippi, amongst the plethora of Mex ones. Come south, illegally immigrated Canadians!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  42. Al says:

    California had the Tea Party before there was a Tea Party, they called themselves the Minutemen back then. Just like now they insisted on making “immigration reform” the most important issue in the Republican party.

    Fortunately for the GOP that worked out just great and the party is thriving and relevant here in the Golden State so I’m sure this won’t be a complete disaster at the national level.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  43. edmondo says:

    @michael reynolds:

    You notice how no one ever says we need a wall and an alligator-filled moat and armed men and B-52′s on the Canadian border?

    It’s highly unlikely that they would give up their healthcare plans for Obamacare.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  44. Of course, whenever I want to know when anyone associated with the tea party thinks, I refer to Politico and the people who comment on this blog.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 13

  45. Andre Kenji says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Why don’t you do what you always ask of others and provide a cite for how many people are entering the U.S illegally from Canada.

    Why anyone would want to immigrate from Canada to the US?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  46. anjin-san says:

    @ Let’s Be Free

    Let me summarize it for you.

    People in the tea party think they should not have to actually pay for the government services they benefit from.

    There you go.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 1

  47. michael reynolds says:

    @superdestroyer:

    Dude, did I claim some number? Did I say there were millions or a lot or anything?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  48. superdestroyer says:

    @Andre Kenji:

    I think MR was implying that a large number of illegal aliens were coming in from Canada but that they hard entered Canada from other countries such as Albania or India. MR implied that is was a significant problem but that the Tea Party types do not care because the illegal aliens are generally white. Of course, MR offered no proof of this but just depended n the stereotypes generally used by elite progressives who are progressives for status purposes

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  49. sam says:

    Former Rep. Allen West, who has hinted he might challenge Sen. Marco Rubio in 2016, pointed to hidden details in the Gang of Eight bill that could cause the conservative base to lose trust in their lawmakers.

    “When you get down into it, you see a lot of waivers and sweeteners and then it’s politically driven,” West said.

    Good Lord, we’ve found our modern Aristotle of politics.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  50. Caj says:

    The Tea Party are just a bunch of ignorant fools. You have to wonder why they even want to stay here! They hate government so much but no doubt many of them work for the government and use all services government provide one way or another. Instead of going to rallies wearing stupid tri-corn hats plus hats with ridiculous tea bags hanging from them, they should form their own commune somewhere. Preferably far from these shores. These are the kind of people who don’t want to help the country as a whole, it’s all about their ideology of sheer nonsense.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  51. JohnMcC says:

    Based on what I see the elections in ’14 are going to be principally about Immigration Reform and forced vaginal ultrasounds. Sounds good to me.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  52. ratufa says:

    Do any of the pro-immigration bill commentators here recognize legitimate, non-racist reasons to oppose the immigration bill, particularly if one is a low-skill worker? For example, those outlined in:

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/113651/liberal-opposes-immigration-reform

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  53. Pinky says:

    @ratufa: Recognizing arguments pro and con? Why would people do that? Reasoning your way through an argument is hard, but accusing someone of racism is easy and comforting. Michael’s comment is just like the recent thread about US drug wars; it’s more interesting in the slur than the statistics. “Everybody knows” that the Tea Party is racist, therefore this immigration bill is well-thought-out. You can reach that conclusion without engaging the logic centers of the brain. The sad thing is, it allows a person to play off resentment of the other while thinking they’re taking the high ground against resentment of the other.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 6

  54. stonetools says:

    Some libertarians argued that the Tea Party was all about overreach by Big Gumint. The problem with that argument is really that the Tea Party LOVED Social Security and Medicare, which were the twin pillars of Big Gumint. What they hated-or were taught to hate- was Obamacare, a universal health insurance program that preserved the role of private health insurers. The Obama Administration never understood why the hatred, and kept trying to explain it in rational terms-to no avail.
    The best explanation is depressing, but simple. The Tea Party hated Obamacare because they feared that the Kenyan Muslim usurper in the White House was going to take their hard earned dollars and give it to those mud people as Obamacare benefits. This is what the GOP ran on in 2010-Obama was going to take their Medicare money and give it to those shiftless mud people.
    The shift to anti-immigration activity makes perfect sense for the Tea Party. After all,one way of preventing the Kenyan from giving their money to the mud people is keeping more mud people from coming in. It all makes sense if you apply TP logic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

  55. Andre Kenji says:

    @ratufa:

    Do any of the pro-immigration bill commentators here recognize legitimate, non-racist reasons to oppose the immigration bill, particularly if one is a low-skill worker?

    These may not be racist reasons, but they are naive. The United States is not the only country in the world, in fact, for many large US companies their largest markets are located overseas. If you are going to increase the cost of labor in the US you decrease the competitiveness of the economy, and more companies are going to be relocating abroad(Or they are going to lose market share to foreign companies).

    The era of when people could earn a comfortable living with unskilled labor is over. And the idea of “protecting” unskilled US labor is a good way of avoiding the discussion vocational training.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  56. Matt Bernius says:

    @JohnMcC:
    You left out Gay Marriage — the wedge issue that returns to haunt republicans.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  57. ratufa says:

    @Andre Kenji:

    So, the non-racist pro-immigration bill arguments are:

    1. Increased immigration will depress wages and thus reduce the incentive for businesses to leave the country.

    and

    2. We should be talking about increasing vocational training instead of limiting immigration (as if we couldn’t do both, or that increased immigration wouldn’t also depress wages for more-skilled workers).

    Given those arguments, it sure is a head-scratcher why some people are opposed to the bill.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  58. @michael reynolds:
    You are blood sucking venomous anti-white supremacist! this is not left vs right, GOP vs Dems, Socialism vs liberty. This is war against White people.

    Why do hostile globalist elite defend Israel as a Jewish ethnostate with Jewish only immigration, but ravage White majority Europe/North America into a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural Gulag with non-White colonization?

    The world is 93% non-White, only 7% White. But 3rd world colonizers, Muslims, Sikhs, Hispanics, are aggressively advancing their agenda to annihilate gullible Whites, just as China annihilates Tibet.

    How long will gullible Whites cuckold for murderous anti-White elite, who confiscate our guns, infiltrate/subvert our banks/FBI/CIA, indoctrinate White kids in academia/mass media, plunder White jobs/wages, & butcher White soldiers in bankrupting wars?

    “Native” Americans invaded from East Asia. Yellow & Brown races committed 10-times more genocide, slavery, imperialism than Whites. Since Old-Testament, Whites have been victims of Jewish/Crypto-Jewish, Turkic, Muslim, N.African imperialism, slavery, genocide.

    Gullible Whites should reject subversive ideologies- libertarianism, feminism, liberalism- & reject hostile slanders of racism. Peace to all humanity, but White people must organize to advance their interests, their fertility, their homelands. Spread this message. Reading list: goo.gl/iB777 , goo.gl/htyeq , amazon.com/dp/0759672229 , amazon.com/dp/1410792617

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 21

  59. Hostile Elite says:

    @Andre Kenji:
    fraud kenji. Japan is doing fine without immigration. Japanese middle class is larger, they live longer than Americans. AND they are a net creditor nation, whereas America is a net debtor nation.

    this is not about legal vs illegal, competitiveness, labor markets, jobs, wages. this is about destruction of white America by hostile, parasitic, anti-white supremacists like you.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

  60. Andre Kenji says:

    @Hostile Elite:

    Japan is doing fine without immigration.

    BS. There is a reasonable proportion of immigrants in Japan, specially from South America(Like the Brazilian Dekasseguis), Malaysia, China and Vietnam. Besides that, one of the reasons that Japanese companies are losing the consumer eletronics market to the Koreans and the Chinese is precisely because Japan has higher labor costs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  61. superdestroyer says:

    @Andre Kenji:

    Japan is 98% ethnic Japanese. Japan is one of the least diverse countries in the world and only has 2.5 million people from other countries and some of those are ethnically Japanese.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Japan#Foreign_citizens

    Somehow I doubt if I can push #2 for Korean in Japan.

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  62. Andre Kenji says:

    @ratufa:

    Increased immigration will depress wages and thus reduce the incentive for businesses to leave the country.

    No, that´s not my argument. My argument is that the United States is not the only country in the world and that higher wages, specially with non-skilled labor(That can be easily replaced) are detrimental to competitiveness. High labor costs for unskilled labor means that you lose businesses to places that have lower labor costs, it´s simple as that.

    Since immigrants also consume they also create demand, so, the idea that they are going to depress wages to everybody is false. On the other hand, the idea that´s feasible to have people in the United States doing the same thing that a Thai or a Bangladeshi does while being paid thousands of times more is delusional.

    By the way, there is a reason why companies are building factories in Turkey, Poland and Morocco, but not on Portugal, Greece and Spain. Labor costs matter.

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  63. Andre Kenji says:

    @superdestroyer:

    2% does not mean that there is no immigration, and “ethnically Japanese” does not mean that these people have the same culture that the locals have.

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  64. Tillman says:

    @Hostile Elite vs Gullible White Cattle: As I read this, my eyes glazed over and spun back into my skull, peering fitfully upon a yawning abyss that was slowly devouring my brain, teeth of void chewing delicately as if savoring every bite.

    I mean, dear God in heaven, it’s a Gordian knot of delusions and prejudices. You can’t begin anywhere without becoming entangled, inextricably and fatally.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  65. ratufa says:

    @Andre Kenji:

    No, that´s not my argument. My argument is that the United States is not the only country in the world and that higher wages, specially with non-skilled labor(That can be easily replaced) are detrimental to competitiveness. High labor costs for unskilled labor means that you lose businesses to places that have lower labor costs, it´s simple as that.

    Mostly true, with the exception of jobs that can’t practically (at this time) be moved (e.g. your gardener or roofer is, by necessity, going to be local). But, how are your statements part of an argument in favor of immigration unless you’re implying that increased immigration will have a negative effect on wages (either by reducing them or slowing their rate of increase)? If your statements aren’t part of an argument about immigration, why are you bringing them up (repeatedly)?

    Since immigrants also consume they also create demand, so, the idea that they are going to depress wages to everybody is false.

    I don’t think anyone (not the article I cited nor me) is arguing that immigration depresses wages for everyone. Nor am I (or the cited article) talking specifically about factory workers — a large number of those jobs have already been automated away or moved someplace else. But, there are many low/mid-skill workers in service industries or construction or other fields whose jobs aren’t easily moved outside of the US.

    On the other hand, the idea that´s feasible to have people in the United States doing the same thing that a Thai or a Bangladeshi does while being paid thousands of times more is delusional.

    Once again, I’m not sure who here has made the points are you arguing against. A nit-picking aside: even if your average factory worker in Bangladesh or Thailand is making the equivalent of a dollar or two per day, it is very very unlikely that they are being paid thousands of times less than somebody doing a comparable job in the US.

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  66. Parasite Kenji says:

    @Andre Kenji:
    What you are saying is irrelevant. Whether labor costs are high or low doesnt matter if we use tariffs to balance that out.

    Our goal is not free trade. Our goal is well-being and prosperity of our people. If it is not in our interests, we wont do it. As simple as that.

    In fact income tax, corporate tax, all these taxes need be replaced with Tariffs. Just as armies are needed to defend people, walls are needed to defend home, tariffs are needed to defend people’s jobs.

    Your goal is the destruction of White People, while you advance Jewish power & wealth.

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  67. Parasite Kenji says:

    @ratufa: immigration depresses wages for bottom 99% but parasitic billionaires make hay.

    Again, its whether we want to fall into Kenji’s Jewish deception, or we do what is in our interests.

    Kenji contradicts himself when he says immigrant demand wont suppress wages, but cheap foreign labor gets our jobs because of our high wages. So if we apply Kenji’s logic to Kenji’s falsehoods, since foreign labor also consumes, foreign demand will not suppress high American wages. But Kenji is a fraud so he wont admit it.

    Cheap 3rd world labor is cheap 3rd world labor. Whether immigrant or foreign labor. The point here is that Americans need a shield from additional labor supply, immigrant & foreign.

    And the answer is Japan & Israel’s tactics. Negligible immigration, & powerful tariffs & ethnic networking to defend American jobs & incomes.

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  68. Andre Kenji says:

    @ratufa:

    But, how are your statements part of an argument in favor of immigration unless you’re implying that increased immigration will have a negative effect on wages (either by reducing them or slowing their rate of increase)? If your statements aren’t part of an argument about immigration, why are you bringing them up (repeatedly)?

    Because that´s not a argument in favor or against immigration, it´s reality. .Countries in the emerging world are exerting huge pressure on developed economies because of wages.

    There is no advantage in increasing wages if there is no one willing to pay these wages because these jobs were outsourced.

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  69. TheoNott says:

    @Parasite Kenji:
    His (Kenji’s) basic point is that it is futile to try and “defend” high wages in the United States. If you attempt to drive up wages in the US artificially via immigration restriction, the natural tendency of production will be to go elsewhere, either via outsourcing or through growth of foreign competitors. Either way, American wages fall. But now, since you refused to allow immigration into the United States to facilitate that production, the US economy has lost potential GDP.
    As for tariffs, while I will concede that, in theory, you could protect American manufacturing and so forth with high enough tariffs you would also devastate the US economy, and bring down living standards for everyone in the country. Just look at North Korea, total economic independence, total economic disaster. (Though admittedly, lack of trade isn’t the whole of it’s problems, having a command economy is it’s biggest failing)

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  70. Pinky says:

    Is it cranks like this guy that have convinced all the OTB regulars that Tea Partiers are racists?

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  71. Andre Kenji says:

    I might be a parasite and might have sent White People to concentration camp, but being accused of being Jewish is bizarre.

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  72. TheoNott says:

    The world is 93% non-White, only 7% White. But 3rd world colonizers, Muslims, Sikhs, Hispanics, are aggressively advancing their agenda to annihilate gullible Whites, just as China annihilates Tibet.

    WE SOUTH ASIANS ARE COMING TO GET YOU111!!!!!!1 We’re gonna load you into concentration camps, chop you up, and cook you into curries! Mwahaha!
    Man, I love white nationalists…they are so entertaining in their earnestness. They sincerely believe that the world is conspiring to destroy “the white race” (there really is no such thing) and that only they know the Truth. They see themselves as engaging in a desperate rearguard struggle to preserve civilization against it’s irreversible downfall. Though sometimes I feel sorry for them. It must be depressing to believe the sorts of things they do, day in, day out.

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  73. al-Ameda says:

    @TheoNott:

    WE SOUTH ASIANS ARE COMING TO GET YOU111!!!!!!1

    Take more medication and reconsider. thanks.

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  74. Jim Henley says:

    @ratufa:

    Do any of the pro-immigration bill commentators here recognize legitimate, non-racist reasons to oppose the immigration bill, particularly if one is a low-skill worker? For example, those outlined in:

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/113651/liberal-opposes-immigration-reform

    So, gains from trade are real. That said, it’s not insane, given the realities of American political economy over the last 35 years, to believe that the ownership class will make sure the bulk of those gains flow to – the ownership class!

    But what is insane is the Tea Party Syllogism:

    1. The 1% only want immigration reform to depress non-elite wages.
    2. Therefore we should oppose immigration reform.
    3. Also, we should support every other economic policy the 1% favors except for this one. Because, hey, why would any of their other preferred policies not be in our interest?

    SPOILER ALERT!

    No, seriously, if you read further I am going to give away the entire story.

    I MEAN IT! IF YOU LIKE SURPRISES, DO NOT KEEP READING!

    Okay, that was your last chance. Ready?!

    Your wages are not going up whether we get immigration reform or not.

    Not unless and until we break the power of the people who are paying for your so-called “Tea Party.” If you really want real wage growth, stop kicking down and kick up for a change.

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  75. ratufa says:

    @Jim Henley:

    Are you implying that I’m a Tea Party supporter? That would be amusing.

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  76. superdestroyer says:

    @Jim Henley:

    If you are saying that lower taxes will only benefit the 1%, it should be easy to understand fiscal conservatives do not want higher taxes because it leads to greater government spending and growing government power. It also makes sense that they would resist immigration because there is no positive in it for them but a large number of negatives. Why should the Tea Party support a government policy that lowers their wages, raising the costs of housing, lowers the qulaity of the public schools, and creates millions new citizens who will be eligible for affirmative action and government set asides.

    Why should people like Abigail Fisher support comprehensive immigration reform when all it will do is lower their standard of living. when was the last time the Democrats were will to adopt a government policy that lowered their standard of living?

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  77. Jim Henley says:

    @ratufa: I specifically talked about “The Tea Party” because I didn’t know enough about your own beliefs to assume they were TP-style beliefs. I’m sure you’re a fine fellow and all, but I never heard of you. :)

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  78. Jim Henley says:

    @superdestroyer: “Fiscal conservatives” who also want higher standards of living for the broad mass of people without higher taxes and more government spending and/or want what they can’t have. I’d like ice cream that builds lean muscle mass, but at least I recognize that it doesn’t exist. Similarly with “fiscal conservatism” and higher median living standards.

    An ordinary intellect like Abigail Fisher would be much better off insisting that the powerful make more space for people like her than trying to keep people of color out of the few spaces available to the non-wealthy.

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  79. Rob in CT says:

    Regarding wages:

    The “it’s either cheap domestic labor or shipping the jobs overseas” argument Andre is making is true of jobs that actually can be moved overseas. Factories and such. Of course, lots of those are already gone.

    Lots of service jobs, however, cannot be outsourced. And in *those* jobs, lots of cheap labor via high levels of immigration will tend to keep wages down. How could it not?

    Construction, lawn care, restaurant work, etc… you can’t outsource that.

    When I make a list of the things I think are causing the stagnation of American wages, immigration runs about 3rd, behind (at least) globalization and increased automation. I think it’s a triple-whammy. We can’t actually do a helluva lot about globalization (well, we could go full on protectionist, but I don’t see that going well) or automation. This leaves immigration.

    A deal that results in more legals, fewer illegals, and a net reduction in immigration levels would be a good deal. Please note that the Senate bill is not that deal.

    CBO estimates that, by 2023, enacting S. 744 would lead to a net increase of 10.4 million in the number of people residing in the United States, compared with the number projected under current law.

    http://www.cbo.gov/publication/44345

    That’s ~1 million additional immigrants per annum. If it were the other way ’round, I’m in. As currently constructed, I think this is a bad deal.

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  80. Rob in CT says:

    @Rob in CT:

    Regarding protectionism… not sure why I framed it as current policy vs. full-on protectionism. Surely there’s a middle ground there, but nobody of any consequence seems interested. I’m curious to see if (relatively mild) protectism becomes more politically acceptable in the near future. I’ve certainly been getting more and more skeptical of the purported gains from “free” trade (scare quotes because even in free trade agreements, there are typically some tarrifs/restrictions). Seems to me there are gains from trade, but it also seems to me these gains flow to the top. So then it’s either redistribute aggressively (socialist devilry!) or throw up some trade barriers. Of course, I could be missing something and probably am.

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  81. TheoNott says:

    @al-Ameda:
    I thought it was pretty obvious I meant that sentence ironically…

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  82. TheoNott says:

    @Rob in CT: Yes and no. You are right that the income gains from free trade tend to flow toward the top, since when you combine the world into one labor pool, you find that the proportion of the globe that can perform low-value labor is a lot higher than that that can perform high-value labor.
    That being said, just looking at the income picture ignores the gains to the lower classes via lower costs. Overall, less trade barriers work to the benefit of everyone. The resulting income concentration should be countered through progressive taxation.

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  83. Rob in CT says:

    Sure, Theo. Cheaper goods @ Walmart, cheaper food at the supermarket, etc. I wouldn’t ignore that. However, I don’t think it washes out. I think the lower rung of the American ladder still gets the shaft.

    And if we’re unwilling to redistribute more (I’ll argue for more redistribution, but I’m under no illusions as to the likelihood of success).

    Overall, less trade barriers work to the benefit of everyone. The resulting income concentration should be countered through progressive taxation.

    I used to believe this, utterly. I’m now questioning it. I’m not convinced that it’s wrong, but I no longer just assume it’s right.

    Especially given the progressive taxation bit appears to involve constant struggle.

    [actually, to be clear, when you say "everyone" you mean humanity at large, yes? Certainly I'd agree that free-er trade has been excellent for people in various developing countries, and I don't begrudge it. Of course, that's easy for me to say, as I'm well-off and haven't had my job shipped somewhere else.]

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  84. al-Ameda says:

    @TheoNott:

    I thought it was pretty obvious I meant that sentence ironically…

    Sorry, my snark detection system failed me.

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