Our last Rattle of 2011 runs the gamut, all the way from an immigration enforcement success in Pennsylvania to a disappointing judicial setback in South Carolina. However, we begin the final roundup of the year with a must-read essay in The American Conservative by W. James Antle III. It looks at the immigration scorecard in a sober, realistic analysis that takes into account the substantive victories of immigration reformers-such as continued nationwide support for SB 1070 and its clones-to the unquestionable failures, including a seismic change in the language of the immigration debate, which has turned the phrase “immigration reform” into a synonym for wholesale amnesty. It’s a piece that anyone who is concerned about this subject-as I know most of you are-should read in its entirety.
We continue by highlighting a great post over at the American Thinker that poses several questions that Newt Gingrich has yet to satisfactorily answer about his dubious proposal to create a tiered system of permanent non-citizen workers out of the pool of 11-20 million illegal aliens currently living here. Be John Galt expresses some other concerns that have yet to be addressed by Newt while emphasizing the points made by Mickey Kaus in his own analysis of Newt’s plan. Something that conservatives supporting Gingrich-but who are ostensibly opposed to amnesty-need to answer is why they’re backing a candidate whose immigration platform mirrors the one put forward by open borders, libertarian economist Bryan Caplan.
Staying in the field of presidential politicking, American Rattlesnake wholeheartedly endorses the statements of Mitt Romney, vis-a-vis President Obama’s illegal alien uncle, Onyango Obama. For those of you who might not recall, Omar Onyango Obama is not only residing in this country illegally-much like the President’s beloved Aunt Zeituni-but is the owner and operator of a liquor store in Boston, despite his recent DUI conviction.
Meanwhile, Mitt Romney’s opponent Rick Perry continued his tough on the border pantomime in Iowa, decrying the inability of the federal government to control our southern border with Mexico, as well as declaring that he would withdraw the Justice Department’s lawsuits against states like Arizona and Alabama. The pull quote from this article is “the border has to be shut down for the future of the United States of America.” One wonders what he would do with the estimated forty percent of illegal aliens who overstay their visas. I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see how serious Governor Perry is about his newfound posture of immigration hawk.
It does seem that the current crop of presidential candidates is being forced to address the concerns of Republican voters, however reluctantly and haltingly. That said, VDare has a fascinating piece exploring the damage that refugee resettlement has caused in Manchester, New Hampshire, and why the national GOP has been completely AWOL on this issue, despite its ritualistic paeans to the role of New Hampshire as the first state in the nation to hold its presidential primary. The politically courageous current mayor of Manchester is standing up for his constituents, even if the federal government and parasitical members of the refugee resettlement industry won’t. Perhaps the boldness of Ted Gatsas will serve as an example for his timorous counterparts in the national GOP to emulate. We can all hope.
The internal strife caused by the U.S. State Department in Maine is mirrored in Florence, Italy, where the tragic deaths of two Senegalese street merchants is being exploited by media organs to condemn the “racism” of ordinary Italians. Sadly, the exploitation of tragedies like this for political purposes is nothing new to the multicultural zealots spearheading the militant, Gramscian left. Nor is the equation of patriotic, reasonable opposition to mass immigration to racism an anomaly, unfortunately. It seems like these sorts of ad hominem attacks come with the territory, as Peter Brimelow pointed out in yesterday’s post.
Heading down to Washington D.C., we find that the usual rogue’s gallery of open borders demagogues is trying once again to foist amnesty upon an American public, and a Congress, that has consistently rejected it since it was first introduced over a decade ago. The tireless efforts of Dick Durbin to give the bird to American taxpayers and hard-working students wouldn’t be newsworthy in itself, if not for the fact that a Philippine newspaper is now leading the charge to see the enactment of the DREAM Act. Media bias in reporting of immigration issues is nothing new, especially from foreign newspapers who hold no reverence for American law. However, the fact that a member of the United States Senate is cribbing notes from a newspaper overseas in order to undermine the country he’s ostensibly representing is a sad commentary on the state of politics in America in 2011.
Taking a short jaunt to Baltimore, we say farewell to WBAL institution Ron Smith. Before being struck down by cancer at the age of 70, Smith was a resonant voice of reason and integrity in a world where too may fall prey to the lure of the D.C. cocktail circuit. Gregory Kane has a fitting tribute to him in the Washington Examiner. Michelle Malkin testifies to the humanity of Ron on her website as well. Like the late, great Terry Anderson-another immigration patriot who died last year-Ron Smith will be missed by many people across the country, most of whom never knew him personally. Rest in Peace, Ron.
In slightly cheerier news, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives has approved a bill that would penalize employers who hire illegal workers. Fox News Latino has the entire story, which touches upon similar bills that were eventually enacted in states like Alabama and Arizona. On the other hand, the drive for immigration enforcement suffered a blow in South Carolina, where a federal judge has enjoined a law that cracked down on human smuggling and gave law enforcement officers the opportunity to detain those arrested for unrelated crimes if they were illegal aliens. As Governor Nikki Haley’s spokesman has said, the ultimate resolution of this case rests in the hands of the Supreme Court.
Our neighbor to the north is having its own immigration problems, which have been amply documented by American Rattlesnake in previous updates. Canada’s capable Immigration Minister Jason Kenney is tackling them in stride, initiating the largest crackdown on citizenship fraud in recent memory. Of course, his proactive initiatives-including an innovative tip line ordinary Canadians can use to report cases of immigration fraud-have earned scorn from the usual suspects. Notwithstanding the carping from bottom-feeding immigration attorneys and radical, open borders socialists, Kenney has earned respect from the public and his adversaries across the aisle, as this National Post article demonstrates.
If only our president had cabinet members willing to stand up for their fellow countrymen. Instead, we have Hilda Solis, the U.S. Secretary of Labor, doing everything in her capacity to empower illegal aliens instead of the Americans who are struggling beneath a crushing unemployment rate and prolonged recession. Even as the unemployment rate plummets in the Yellowhammer State because of HB 56, Solis tries to find ways to double down on the failure of the Obama administration to provide economic opportunities for American citizens. Combined with the administration’s decision to remove the last remaining National Guard troops from our southern border, Barack Obama has demonstrated his disdain for the concerns of the American electorate.
In other administration news, the head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Alan Bersin, has resigned from his post. An unconfirmed recess appointment by President Obama, Bersin will be replaced by David V. Aguilar. But don’t worry open borders enthusiasts, Mr. Aguilar is four square in favor of amnesty, although he prefers to call it something else.
Finally, the ongoing congressional investigations into Operation Fast and Furious and this administration’s persistent coverup continue apace. We now have Senator Joseph Lieberman, previously known for his atrocious record on immigration issues, directing the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, which he currently chairs, to investigate the interagency “miscommunication” that lies at the heart of the Fast and Furious debacle. Let’s hope that he and Senator Grassley can elicit a more responsive reaction by administration officials than we’ve seen in the past. What is certain is that the men and woman who were killed, including Agent Jaime Zapata, as a result of the Justice Department’s and ATF’s negligence will never return to the warm embrace of their loved ones. If nothing else, let’s push for some measure of justice and accountability for those still alive.