It must be tough to be a Republican these days. Seems like no matter what they do, they end-up in a pickle. Who could've guessed that the inevitable result of being on the wrong side of the issues most important to a changing demographic would have some disadvantages?
Not Republicans, apparently, having only recently realized they've added yet another fissure to the growing list of serious problems they face heading into 2013.
Much has been discussed regarding the Latino community, their voting patterns, and how they've been affected by the immigration reform issue, by people much better qualified to discuss these subjects than I am—Markos, for one, being prominent among them.
That said, I offer you my likely insignificant take on an article that came out just prior to the Sandy Hook tragedy, which for obvious reasons I postponed, but remains current, nonetheless. . .
Six days prior to the main article to be discussed here momentarily, Markos wrote the following:
There are two emerging camps within the conservative movement regarding immigration: One is led by people who know how to do math, and realize they're screwed if they can't reverse their losses on immigration. The other realizes they're screwed if the laws create millions more Democratic voters over the next several years.
Sure enough, six days later, we learn that a light has indeed gone on upstairs for the GOP:
Senior Republicans say the party is struggling to thread the needle on immigration reform, an issue emerging as the next big item on the political agenda once the ongoing deficit talks reach their conclusion.Getting their asses handed to them like this...
GOP leaders recognize the party needs a new approach.Not so fast, however, because old habits die hard, especially when your heart's in the wrong place to begin with:
On the other hand, internal skeptics fear that a GOP rush to embrace a more liberal approach to immigration would risk sundering the conservative movement without paying any electoral dividends.Intentional or not, "electoral dividends" is a telling choice of words. Given the Republican position to date regarding immigration reform, it's easy to conclude:
It's not about doing the right thing for Latinos, it's about doing the right thing for Republicans.
Be it money or votes, it's the payoff that matters. They're more than ready to invest huge sums of money in election-cycle saturation messaging, but when it comes to investing in people by way of policy, the well runs dry.
Relying on massive monetary investment to provide enough swing voters to pick up the slack for their ever-dwindling base, didn't pan out this last election. Even attempts to actually give Latinos legitimate reasons to vote for them haven't worked out too well for the GOP historically:
[Bush and McCain] had no success, were subjected to considerable criticism from other conservatives and the issue almost capsized the latter’s run for the 2008 presidential nomination.Yet they still think they have the luxury to wait for a Republican president to move into the White House before they take any meaningful action on immigration reform. The reason for delay?
[Rep. James Lankford (R-Oklahoma)] fears Republicans who supported any kind of sweeping reform would come under attack from their right flank while most of the benefit could accrue to President Obama.So getting the "credit," and the "payoff" in votes they assume would follow, is the real priority. Denying that credit to President Obama would be icing on the cake.
“Whoever is president, they sign it and they get credit for it,” he said. “Some say that if Republicans push immigration reform here, we’ll get credit for it. That’s not true. The president will get credit for it.”
It's tactical attribution of responsibility: Giving credit to Democrats for cutting Social Security and Medicare in the upcoming debt-ceiling fight, and giving credit to Republicans for immigration reform, once they have the White House. In both instances Democrats do the work, while they sit back and relax. As usual.
They might not get away with the immigration reform part of their scam so easily, however, as a purity-of-heart test is on the horizon:
President Obama reiterated his call for comprehensive immigration reform during an interview on Meet The Press, claiming that the effort will be a top goal in his second term. “Fixing our broken immigration is a top priority. I will introduce legislation in the first year to get that done,” Obama said.The only thing Republicans are almost certain to get is another problem:
How to explain why they refuse this president the support they would readily give to a Republican president on the same issue—an issue they've magically become the champions of—without exposing their true motives.
Perhaps they'll finally realize that just because their base is receptive to propaganda doesn't mean the rest of the country, specifically Latinos, will be receptive to it.
I'd prefer they continue shooting themselves in the foot. The sooner Republicans are seen for what they really are—FRAUDS—the sooner we can move forward in a meaningful way.
(My emphasis in quotes)