Contra Nadler

By Mark Krikorian on February 13, 2009
Contra Nadler
Yes, reach out to immigrants—but not by admitting more of them.

By Mark Krikorian
National Review Online, February 13, 2009

Richard Nadler utterly misses the point in his NR piece on immigration. He argues that Republicans should accept amnesty and increased immigration in exchange for promises of future enforcement (“comprehensive immigration reform”). He claims that such a move could win the votes of Hispanics, and that “every hour we postpone a border reform that respects the interests of employers and Hispanics, our entire agenda suffers.”

On the contrary, the threat to the GOP and its agenda is not the party’s opposition to mass immigration, but mass immigration itself. The majority of Hispanics vote Democratic, and this would surprise no one knowledgeable about American history: That’s what immigrants, and the native-born closest to immigration, have always done. The Irish voted Democratic not because Yankees were mean to them as they stepped off the boat in Boston, but because the Democratic party has always been more attractive to the outsider. (David Frum touches on this longstanding difference between the two parties in his book Comeback.)

This remains the case today because mass immigration creates a political and social environment more hospitable to the solutions offered by the Left. It increases poverty and economic inequality, increases the number of uninsured, increases demand for affirmative-action benefits (for which immigrants are eligible from the moment they arrive)—in short, mass immigration in the near term doesn’t so much create an electorate for the Left as a clientele. My organization’s research has shown that the fiscal burden of immigration increases with legalization, as use of taxpayer-funded services balloons among newly eligible immigrants.

read the rest of this article at National Review Online.