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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy


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The fact that the GOP has no clear plan to win the election next year other than hoping President Obama fails so miserably that people will feel no choice but to vote Republican became more apparent yesterday.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 13 to 6 to confirm Judge Sotomayor as the next Supreme Court Justice. And only one Republican voted in favor of the nomination. The GOP got shellacked by Hispanic voters last year - losing 3 out of 4 votes compared to getting nearly half of those votes in 2004. And political analysts are in general agreement that the loss of so many Hispanic voters cost the GOP dearly both in the congressional and presidential races last year. Some even credit this shift in votes to giving Obama the electoral votes to win the White House.

So one would think that the GOP would be scrambling to win some of those voters back. They certainly were sending the opposite message yesterday when they overwhelmingly opposed the well-qualified Sotomayor who will become the first Hispanic Supreme Court justice. They didn't help by declining invitations to attend the annual La Raza conference, an absence being noted in the Hispanic media.

The last major litmus test for the GOP on an issue Hispanic voters will be watching is the vote on immigration reform that will come later this year or early next year.  It is far from clear whether any GOP members of Congress have shifted their views yet. But what is clear is that the Hispanic community is starting to become a reliable Democratic bloc of voters and as the nation's fastest growing ethnic group, the GOP can't survive as a national party without them.

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  1. George Chell's Avatar
    If the economy recovers strongly and the GOP still opposed reform, they will pay a heavy price!
  2. Legal_Alien_from_Roswell's Avatar
    GOP are digging/dug their own grave, i doubt any of then will change their xenophobic stance on the Immigration reform as well, the GOP has lost leadership, its a dead party, the democrats will rule for the better half of the century.

    Too bad that the CIR will never get through though, atleast this Obamas tenure.
  3. JC's Avatar

    The GOP clearly has to re-evaluate their relationship with Hispanics. However, I disagree that the Sotomayor vote is the latest example. I was very unimpressed with her during the hearings, and I think the GOP was right to vote the way they did.

    As a Hispanic myself, I am thrilled to see Hispanics reach new levels. But this cannot be about race. It has to be about merits. I sure hope she does better as a justice than as a nominee.

    Finally, I submit to you that the GOP would have voted almost exactly the same way whatever the color of her skin. On the other hand, I think race played a huge role in the way the Democrats voted. Race shouldn't play a role either way. It is very disappointing to see politicians willing to compromise and create a more flexible standard just because of the color of someone's skin. As a minority, I don't consider that advancement.

    I commend the GOP for making the right vote, knowing full well the consequences would be commentary like the one in your post.

  4. Another voice's Avatar
    The GOP continues to try to define their course and identity...with all Americans!! I think that the fact that they are not considering the demographic changes in the country as it relates to their political actions is important!! I will say that so far they seem to be successful I defeating Obama in Healthcare, people think the status quo is better. I think in Immigration sort of the same thing happen last time around. I would not bet the Hispanic vote returning to their party any time soon for a variety of reasons including immigration!! Mostly because they do not feel represented as people in that party!!!
  5. Pat Young's Avatar
    In state after state the Latino and Asian-American votes will be vital to the GOP next year. The GOP base is increasingly crazy and trying to cultivate their hatred is not a path to victory.

    Patrick Young, Esq. CARECEN
  6. John's Avatar

    With health care pushed back to fall, what are the chances of CIR or any immigration bills to be tackled this year? I think its Health Care and then Energy and probably Immigration sometimes next year.

    On that note, here is a few good new from USCIS "USCIS Says Name-Check Backlog is Resolved -
  7. Jenda's Avatar
    Did Democrats get hurt by trying to block Hispanic Judges? I doubt that the largely polite opposition (God, let future hearings be as cerebral and as pleasant) to the soon to be Justice is going to be a major factor in anything.
    Immigration reform, the economy, and foreign policy (what are we doing supporting that power-hungry lunatic in Honduras?) on the other hand...
  8. Jack's Avatar
    'Some even credit this shift in votes to giving Obama the electoral votes to win the White House.'

    Or 'some' could simply run the numbers and determine what, in fact, occurred. Some people not named Frank Sharry actually did:

    'What if there were no Latino voters?
    In a counter-factual world in which there were no Latino voters, both New Mexico and Indiana would have switched into the McCain column. But Obama would have still won the electoral vote.'

    By a still wide margin. You expect the ethnic special interest groups and other amnesty advocates to push this myth but whatever magazines or newspapers did perhaps were 'coloring the news', i.e., ignoring facts which, in this case, refuted their preconceived script.

  9. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    Jack - I'm sure the antis like yourself would like the GOP to believe this line. Except that your logic is backwards. Even if what you said is true, when there is a close election, the Latino vote will become even more important. Saying Obama didn't need them because he did so well overall is small comfort to a party trying to figure out how to win elections again. Shift another 10% or so of Latinos and then tell me how the GOP wins the presidency EVER AGAIN. You can't just keep trying to increase your percentage of angry white right wing voters.
  10. George Chell's Avatar
    You all probably heard Voinovich's comments of the GOP becoming the party of southern conservatives (ie., rednecks). Vitter protested Voinovich's comments and said the southerners stood for conservative Christian values. If indeed what Vitter representes the southerners, that does not bode well for them. With all due respects to Greg who hails from Memphis, I must say that most of the recent philanderers are from the South including Vitter himself..the others being Sanford and Beasley. Of course, then you can include, Ensign and the former Idaho senator to the list as well..then it is the GOP. Great conservative values, these guys have. I think these genteel but angry white southerners got away with philandering because their affairs were with white women. Had this been interracial all of them would have been ousted. GOP's current values are neither Christian nor fact, it is an insult to the true Christians and conservatives..most likely they are pandering to the white skin color worshipping constituents..and these are the folks CIS and FAIR appeal to..they dont care about American workers loosing jobs! They just dont want foreingers moving to America. But, as these white southerners tell death row inmates, "they should have thought about it when they committed the crime." in this case the crime being saddling future generation with indebtedness to Asian countries and forfeiting the country's sovereignty.
  11. Legal_Alien_from_Roswell's Avatar
    AILA statement on Legal Immigration Reform
  12. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Vitter talking about Christian values again? LOL!!!
  13. Another voice's Avatar
    Vitter and hookers for conservative Christian values...that will fly well with the American people!!!
  14. Federale's Avatar
    It is just the issue of immigration and Hispanics? No, Obama got elected on white votes, not Hispanic votes. And Obama and the Demoncrats will not be getting those same white votes in 2010 or 2012, especially with complete economic failure and the new massive middle class tax increases just announced by Geitner on Sunday morning talk shows.
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