We delude. You Decide.

A mostly political Weblog.
April 9 2006 3:18 PM

We Delude, You Decide

Do pols actually believe the press clips on immigration?

(Continued from Page 4)

Robo-poller Scott Rasmussen has posted an interesting immigration-related result on his Premium Site. He asked people to choose between two candidates. One candidate "favors building a barrier along the Mexican border and forcing illegal aliens to leave the United State." The other "favors expanding the ways that foreign workers can legally get jobs in the United States." The candidate who would force illegal aliens to leave is favored by a 46% to 38% margin. ... The poll should move to Rasmussen's public site soon. ... I'm actually surprised there wasn't a more lopsided result in such a contest--the pro-legalization position only seems to gain when the exact conditions and benefits of legalization (e.g. "learn English," "pay taxes") are spelled out. On the other hand, "forcing illegal aliens to leave" is a fairly harsh version of an anti-illegal enforcement strategy. ... The Rasmussen poll reinforces the argument that an anti-legalization stand would on average help a candidate in the upcoming 2006 election. And that's not even factoring in the relative "intensity" of the two sides--i.e. what might motivate people to go to the polls in a low-turnout mid-term race. You'd think the 46% would be more intense than the 38%. ... 3:24 P.M. link

Laurie David will whip them into line: David Mastio argues that the same environmental groups that call global warming "the most serious environmental issue of our time" are blocking the alternative energy sources--even hydro-power and wind power--that might, in the short-term, reduce the problem. ... P.S.: But I don't see why it's a conflict of interest for big media companies like Gannett, ABC, CBS and NBC to have "donated more than a half-billion worth of ad space" to environmental groups. Sounds more like a confluence of interest--the media companies worry about the environment, report on it, and try to do something about what they've found out. It would be a conflict if the opposite were true, and the environmental groups were actually paying for lots of ads. ... 2:18 P.M.

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When Gloria Borger announced on Chris Matthews that Treasury Secretary John Snow would be replaced after November because "the Republicans don't want to go through confirmation hearings and relitigate the economy before the [election]," you knew Snow would be gone by July. ... Yes, it would truly be awful for Republicans if in the days before the election the papers were filled with articles about their stewardship of the economy, their one remaining success story! It might push the news from Iraq off the front page! ... Does Gloria Borger really think the economy is the Republicans' weak spot? ... P.S.: When did Borger become Johnny Apple? [A long time ago--ed. Good point] 12:59 P.M.

That Martinez-Hagel "compromise" immigration plan may be lamer than initially reported. ... 12:15 A.M.

Was McCain 'petulant' on Meet the Press? My colleague Robert Wright says yes. I say no. Crooks & Liars has the video. ... Update: Arianna is more sad than angry! ... 10:42 P.M.

Bug Man Bugs Out: Even my GOP friends were scared of Tom DeLay and his capos, which tells me something. And he's an exterminator, meaning he defends the overuse of various highly unhealthy chemicals. But I will say that during the welfare reform debate of 1995-6, when you needed a disciplined GOP House to hold off the bill-gutting tendencies of the squishy Senate, I was sure happy DeLay was there. ... And with DeLay, unlike with Newt Gingrich, you didn't have to worry that he'd give away the store in a fit of misguided megalomaniacal magnanimity. ... 10:32 P.M.

WaPo buries the news: A not-uninteresting Senate compromise is  discussed on page A9 of today's WaPo. Under the deal, illegal immigrants who've

lived and worked in the United States for five years would qualify for a work visa and an opportunity to apply for citizenship. They could stay in the country as they apply for a green card.

Those not meeting the requirements would have to return to their native countries. New measures in the larger immigration bill, such as a tamper-proof identification card and sanctions against employers who hire illegal immigrants, would convince recent illegal immigrants they have no choice but to comply, advocates of the compromise said.

Sen. Frist is quoted saying that 40% of the 12 million illegals have been here less than five years. ... The actual sight of millions of illegals having to leave the country might have a deterrent, they-mean-business effect that could counterbalance the inevitable incentive effect (on potential future illegals) of the deal's partial semi-amnesty. But 1) would the under-5s really be made to "return to their native countries"? Why not see if employer sanctions can accomplish this first? Otherwise we might get the soft semi-amnesty part without the tough "no choice but to comply" part. 2) Wouldn't this just energize the Latino lobby to demand that the limit be lowered to 3 years, or 2 years, or 0 years? A bidding war for that voting bloc isn't out of the question.  3) There's still the bogus idea that this plan wouldn't reward illegals for their lawbreaking. According to WaPo:

Under the plan, illegal immigrants could not be put ahead of others legally in the country and seeking U.S. citizenship. Because long-term illegal immigrants would still have to apply for a green card through normal channels, they also could not jump ahead of workers hoping to come to the United States through legal channels.