Yes, John Edwards does seem like the obvious Dem presidential candidate to seize the gaping, near-irresistable opening and oppose the immigration bill, as MyDD's Tarheel--alertly flagged by Blogometer--argues. I was hoping for Obama. But Edwards is losing. He needs to make a move. And if you really care about incomes at the bottom of the distribution--which is what I thought Edwards' campaign was all about--then you can't not oppose this bill, I think. ... Tarheel notes that the immigration bill
is hugely unpopular. Most americans outside the blogosphere heavily oppose it. Union workers seem unhappy with it. Americans (outside the blogosphere) instinctively don't believe in rewarding illegal behavior with citizenship. This would bring lots of free press for Edwards and distinguishes him from others on the Democratic side. I'm fairly certain this wouldn't lose any votes in Iowa or NH or SC.
Comments by Republican senators on Thursday suggested that they were feeling the heat from conservative critics of the bill, who object to provisions offering legal status. The Republican whip, Trent Lott of Mississippi, who supports the bill, said: "Talk radio is running America. We have to deal with that problem."
At some point, Mr. Lott said, Senate Republican leaders may try to rein in "younger guys who are huffing and puffing against the bill."
[E.A.] a) 'Feeling the heat'! b) It's of course in the interests of the bill's backers to make it seem as if opposition only comes from "talk radio," and not, say, from the AFL-CIO--or from ordinary non-radio Democrats and Republicans, for that matter; c) Is that Rush you're talkin' about? d) Is Lott still smarting from the lack of support he got from the GOP grassroots after his appalling Strom Thurmond comments? e) Is he making a play for Strange New Respect? f) Wasn't it Lott who criticized as "not helpful" Bush's bashing of GOP opponents of the bill? I think it was. g) Isn't the obvious pro-bill strategy to let the opposition calm down, not stir it up? h) I thought it was John McCain who didn't know what was in the bill. ...
Update:Instapundit sees a pattern ...
A year ago, Trent Lott was saying he was "damn tired" of PorkBusters, and now the GOP is all about fighting the pork. Difference? They lost an election by listening to him. Now what will they be saying after the next election?
Lott was on the verge of turning into an intriguing, nothing-to-lose, truth-telling character a while back. What happened? ... Possible answer: He is telling the truth--and the truth is he's one of "the plump complacent emirs of the one-party-state of Incumbistan," as Mark Steyn puts it. ... 2:34 A.M.
The odds are better than even that the coalition [supporting the bill] will simply regroup, try again, and this time roll over the opposition like a Sherman tank.
The coalition is simply too powerful for anything as unfocused as mere American public opinion to resist for long.