Newt Gingrich said he opposes deporting law-abiding immigrants
who have been in America for 25 years (Chris Keane/Reuters)
According to Tim Albrecht, the communications director for Iowa's Republican Gov. Terry Branstad, this statement
by Newt Gingrich in last night's debate was a major blunder:
I do not believe that the people of the United States are going to take people who have been here a quarter century, who have children and grandchildren, who are members of the community, who may have done something 25 years ago, separate them from their families, and expel them.
I do believe if you've been here recently and have no ties to the U.S., we should deport you. I do believe we should control the border. I do believe we should have very severe penalties for employers, but I would urge all of you to look at the Krieble Foundation Plan.
I don't see how the -- the party that says it's the party of the family is going to adopt an immigration policy which destroys families that have been here a quarter century. And I'm prepared to take the heat for saying, let's be humane in enforcing the law without giving them citizenship but by finding a way to create legality so that they are not separated from their families.
In response, Albrecht tweeted:
Newt did himself significant harm tonight on immigration among caucus and primary voters. #cnndebate
Romney boxes in Gingrich on amnesty. Shrewd, smart move. Newt continues to defend. VERY tough to defend in Iowa. #cnndebate
Gingrich wants to be "humane"...is his Perry "don't have a heart" moment. Get ready to be on defense, Newt. #cnndebate
And, finally, this:
Big "I can be above the fray and people think I'm smart" misstep by Gingrich on immigration tonight. #cnndebate
So with with all that tweeting about what a huge mistake Newt Gingrich made, does Albrecht disagree with him on the substance? Does Albrecht really think that the government should round up people who have been here for years and years, people who have been paying their taxes and participating in the community and who have started families? Is that really what he believes?
It turns out the answer is no. In response to a tweet that supported the substance of Gingrich's position, Albrecht said:
@alexcast Don't disagree in practicality, but looking at politically in IA caucus. Need a LOT more education on this.
So for all the fun he had slamming Newt Gingrich ... he actually thinks Gingrich is right. But even though he shares Gingrich's position, he still thinks Mitt Romney was the "shrewd" and "smart" one. Perhaps he's right, but only if your only goal is winning the next election. And if it turns out that Iowa Republicans don't hate brown people as much as Albrecht thinks they do, then Romney's "smart" and "shrewd" pander to racism will have accomplished absolutely nothing but driving this country further apart.
8:17 AM PT: Maybe a less long-winded version of the question I'm trying to get at in this post is this: doesn't the fact that Tim Albrecht agrees with Newt Gingrich suggest that his analysis was probably wrong?