Carol Platt Liebau: Enough

Saturday, June 30, 2007


This piece by Linda Chavez (someone whose work I've otherwise admired) is an example of the doom-saying and finger-pointing being indulged in by Republicans who wanted the fatally flawed immigration bill to pass.

Like many of the bill's other proponents, Ms. Chavez declines to take the serious objections of bill's opponents seriously. For example, she leaves unaddressed the national security implications of handing out Z visas in the space of one business day, and ignores the obvious hypocrisy of those who would insist that the federal government is competent to handle all the other new tasks that would be imposed on it by the new legislation -- except, of course, securing the border.

It's much easier, of course, to impugn the intelligence and the motives of those who have disagreed with her on the bill's merits (a group that, not incidentally, includes the majority of the American people), and to dismiss the bill's opponents of an ignorant, single-minded obsession with "amnesty." (She doesn't explain why, in fact, law-abiding people shouldn't, on some level, have the right to be offended at the specter of the government rewarding law-breaking).

Most damaging of all, Republicans like Ms. Chavez -- through their own smears and slurs -- have given credibility to the ugliest Democrat stereotypes of Republicans as racist bigots. If, as she predicts, Republicans "find themselves sitting on the back benches for years to come" because of the immigration issue, she has only herself and her ideological compatriots like the President and John McCain to thank for it.


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