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Bloggings: More about rearranging deck chairs on the immigration Titanic, by Roger Algase

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June was a month of great promise for immigration, or so it seemed. First, President Obama instructed the Department of Homeland Security to issue a memo (not an "executive order") putting much of the DREAM Act, which had been defeated by a Republican filibuster threat (and five Democratic Senators who failed to vote for cloture) into temporary effect. Of course, we do not know exactly when the affected DREAMer's will actually be able to apply for relief, but not to worry - help is on the way. 


Even more exciting was Chief Justice Roberts' decision to join the liberal majority in throwing out much, but by no means all, of Arizona's SB 1070 Achtung! Wo sind Ihre Papiere? (AWSIP) anti-Mexican immigrant hate law. There are many interesting legal issues raised by both the president's initiative and the Supreme Court majority's ruling which some of my colleagues are exploring thoroughly, and there is no need for me to try to add anything to their important and valuable comments. 


However, what would happen if President Obama's DREAM initiative were suddenly cancelled? And what would happen if the federal government were to announce that it will fully cooperate with enforcement by the states of the part of Arizona's law that was left standing, and will encourage many more states to adopt similar laws?


Or, even worse, suppose that a Republican Congress and president, using the Supreme Court's reaffirmation of the doctrine of federal supremacy over immigration enforcement, enact a law far worse than even the original Arizona statute (or the one in Alabama), making every day of presence in the US without legal status a separate federal felony punishable by up to five years in prison?


Never happen, you say? Go back and read HR 3447 which was passed by the Republican House of Representatives in late 2005 under Wisconsin Congressman James Sensenbrenner. but, fortunately, never made it to the Senate. At least, that is how I read that bill, which would also have made it a felony for any American to give "assistance" (a tip? - a car ride?) to anyone who had violated even the most trivial or technical immigration regulation (a felony as well - you guessed it).


If that bill had passed, no one could have argued that it was unconstitutional under federal pre-emption. (Maybe there would be a 10th Amendment states rights argument? Justice Scalia's dissent in the Arizona case might no doubt prove helpful on that score.)


But, sarcasm aside, there could be some very rough seas ahead for the ship of immigration rights, if the Republicans win in November. And it is not as if they have made any secret about what their plans for the future of immigration are. Romney has already announced that Obama's DREAM initiative would not survive Romney's first day in office. He would "rescind and replace" it. Rescind we can understand. But replace? With what? An updated, and possibly even harsher (if that were possible) version of HR 3447?


Having already established my record as a forecaster by making totally (and fortunately) wrong predictions about last week's two major Supreme Court decisions - at least I had plenty of company - I will now make another prediction: The Republicans will win the White House and both Houses of Congress this fall - and perhaps by a comfortable margin, as happened in Wisconsin's recall election.


How do I know this? The answer is simple. Just follow the super-pac money. There is no way that the Democrats can possibly win in November if they are outspent 4-1 or 5-1, as they surely will be - witness Obama's desperate pleas for money to former big Democratic donors who are now turning a tin ear to him. This year's election is guaranteed to be the most corrupt, one sided election since the 19th century - or maybe even including the 19th century. The Democrats will not have a chance.


Immigration supporters, we are on the Titanic. Get ready for the iceberg. Let's enjoy arranging the deck chairs of DREAM and the SB 1070 victory (such as it is) while we still can. There will not be much lime left. But wait - maybe there is some reason to hope - my last predictions were way off. Maybe this one will be too.

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Comments

  1. Matthew Kolken's Avatar
    Unfortunately, another one of my "predictions" has hit the mark.

    Emails now confirm that the Obama administration is using Secure Communities to racially profile and deport people of color that have never been charged with any criminal violation.

    See: http://bit.ly/MYdsMx

    Chris Newman, Legal Director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, says it best:

    "This is the latest proof that Secure Communities is not a targeted immigration enforcement program, but a deportation dragnet."

    Vote Gary Johnson for President in 2012: http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/immigration
  2. Roger Algase's Avatar
    I also have a comment along this same line about Secure Communities in my latest blogging, which should hopefully be in Thursday's (July 5) ID. Obama is certainly doing everything to obscure the even greater danger to immigration rights Romney and the Republicans present.

    Obama is also trying to throw away the Hispanic vote which he so badly needs this fall by his cruel and senseless deportation policies. Senseless, because it will not gain him a single extra votes among the "deport 'em all" hard liners. How much "credit" did Obama get from Justice Scalia in his Arizona dissent.

    Matt is absolutely right about Obama on immigration. Where he and I respectfully disagree is about what I see as the even greater and more urgent danger from Romney. I am glad to be able to agree even 50 per cent with Matt on this fall's election.
  3. Roger Algase's Avatar
    Again, with the highest respect to Matt, a distinguished lawyer and courageous fighter for immigrant rights, I believe that throwing away one's vote on - Gary Johnson (I am trying hard to remember his name), is the same as vote for Romney for president.

    It is, in effect, a vote for Kris Koback, for Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and for all the Republicans (except for three courageous ones) who voted against the DREAM Act. It is a vote for HR 3447 in the 2005 House of Representatives. It is a vote for "attrition", for "enforcement only" and for making the Arizona and Alabama hate laws a model for the whole US.

    It is also a vote to make Secure Communities even more "Secure" if that were possible, and, if Congress provides the additional funds, as a Republican controlled one would no doubt do (Goodbye to "small government", hahaha, when it comes to keeping America white), deporting even more people each year, say 500,000.

    Yes, there are a lot of things horribly wrong with Obama's immigration Titanic, and not only the deck chairs. But let's watch out for the iceberg that Karl Rove, The Koch Brothers and Sheldon Adelson are sending its way. The iceberg will not be a small one.
  4. Matthew Kolken's Avatar
    Roger, we've been down this road before.

    The definition of insanity is repeating the same mistakes and expecting different result.
  5. Roger Algase's Avatar
    Matt, what is the definition for making even worse mistakes in the future and not expecting to get even worse results?
  6. Matthew Kolken's Avatar
    "Matt, what is the definition for making even worse mistakes in the future and not expecting to get even worse results?"

    Obama wins second term.
  7. Roger Algase's Avatar
    Matt, at least one thing is certain. Either you or I will have the chance this fall to see if our respective worst case scenarios work out. I would be happy to cede that honor over to you, and I am sure you would no doubt be willing to reciprocate.
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