What Mike Murphy Should Have Said

 

My reaction to Mike Murphy’s recent appearance on the Ricochet Podcast can be summarized with one word: frustration. I think it safe to say that my reaction is one shared by many – probably most – members. That said, the cause of my frustration puts me in a minority on Ricochet. Though I do not support comprehensive immigration reform at the present moment, I think it will be necessary at some point and I was deeply disappointed at how poor a case Murphy made for immigration reform as a political necessity. There are few things I find more frustrating than listening to an argument to which I am sympathetic put poorly. Now I don’t expect everyone to be persuaded by this, but here’s what I think Murphy should have said:*

First, we need to recognize that the GOP’s problem with the Hispanic vote is a serious one. Hispanics are the largest minority group in the United States and are the fastest-growing segment of the American population. There are currently around 25 million Hispanics eligible to vote in the United States, a number set to rise to 40 million by 2030. Even if Hispanic immigration (both legal and illegal) were stopped entirely today, if the Republican Party cannot get a significantly higher percent of the Hispanic vote than it has in recent elections it is headed for long-term minority party status. This is particularly true in the case of presidential politics. The GOP cannot achieve an Electoral College majority without Texas and Hispanics are on track to become the largest ethnic group in Texas in about a decade. A Republican Party that receives less than 30 percent of the Hispanic vote is in trouble. Since 1980 (the first election for which such data is available and reliable), no one has won a presidential election with less than 30% of the Hispanic vote. In 2012, Romney received only 27%.

Fortunately, Hispanic voting patterns are not set in stone. While it is unlikely that the GOP is going to win a majority of Hispanic votes anytime soon, it should be recognized that the Republican Party’s standing among Hispanic voters is currently at a twenty year low and that it was much higher fairly recently. George W. Bush did quite well among Hispanics. In 2000, he received 35% of the Hispanic vote and in 2004 he won between 41 and 44% (depending on the source).

This brings us to the question of why the GOP currently does so poorly among Hispanics. Between 2004 and the midterm elections of 2006, the Republican Party saw its share of the Hispanic vote fall by between one quarter and one third. While the GOP lost ground among pretty much every demographic group, the drop in support among Hispanics was substantially greater than among other groups. One thing that likely contributed to this collapse in support is that W’s attempt to pass a Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act (CIRA) was thwarted by a GOP-controlled Congress.

Perhaps more at fault than the actual failure of the CIRA was the nature of much of the right’s opposition to it. Groups such as the Minutemen received prominent news coverage and, while their motives may have been benign, they were portrayed as anti-Hispanic vigilantes and bigots. Such coverage may have been unfair, but it was not without a factual basis. In 2008, Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist expressed dismay at the number of organizations with “sinister intentions” that grew out of the Minuteman Project saying, “I very well may have been fighting for people with less character and less integrity than the ‘open border fanatics’ I have been fighting against.” On a less extreme level, it’s hard to argue that conservative commentators like Rush Limbaugh help the perception of the GOP among Hispanics when they argue against immigration reform on the grounds that Hispanic immigrants are welfare-dependent, job-stealing, criminally-inclined drains on America’s public finances planning to reconquer the Southwest for La Raza (not that La Raza wouldn’t like a reconquista).

So why, you may ask, if the GOP is generally perceived to be unwelcoming to Hispanics, is immigration reform necessary to improve the GOP’s standing among Hispanics?

Well, immigration is more of a threshold question than a magic bullet. Passing immigration reform would demonstrate to Hispanic voters that the GOP is not hostile to them. There are currently large numbers of Hispanics who might be receptive to the conservative message on the value of hard work, traditional morality, and opportunity, but who reject it out of hand because they perceive the messengers to be hostile to them. We cannot persuade someone of the rightness of our position if they aren’t willing to give us a hearing in the first place.

But shouldn’t Hispanics already be receptive to our position? After all, polling tends to show that Hispanic voters care far more about the economy than they do about immigration.

It’s true that polling suggests that Hispanic voters care far more about the economy than they do about immigration reform, but that doesn’t really matter in this context. As Mickey Kaus astutely pointed out, the fact that voters in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District stated that the economy was a higher priority to them than immigration doesn’t mean that immigration doesn’t matter. Sauce for the goose being sauce for the gander, Hispanic voters may care more about the economy than they do about immigration, but that doesn’t mean they don’t care about immigration.

What about the argument that amnesty would add millions of new Democratic voters to the electorate?

Opponents of the path to citizenship frequently make the claim that it will result in 11 million new Democratic voters, ushering in a permanent Democratic majority. While it’s true that providing a path to citizenship to those illegally in the country would lead to an increase in Democratic votes, the actual net effect is likely to be far less than the 11 million figure. First, it needs to be recognized that 11 million is the total number of illegal immigrants in the country and that not all of these are going to become citizens. I have a friend who is an immigration lawyer and staunch opponent of comprehensive immigration reform. His best estimate is that between 40 and 50 percent of current illegal immigrants will not end up becoming citizens — some because of ineligibility or return to their home country, most because they don’t really care about citizenship and would be content with legal status as permanent residents. Let’s assume the high end of his range opts for citizenship. 60% of 11 million is 6.6 million. That’s not the end of the analysis. Hispanics have a voter turnout of 48%, so of the 6.6 million eligible to vote only 3.17 million are likely to actually vote. Not all of these will vote Democrat. If we assume that the GOP is able to increase its share of the Hispanic vote from the currently abysmal 27% to a 2000 level 35% we end up with 2 million new Democratic votes and 1.1 million new Republicans for a net increase of only 900,000 Democratic votes. If the GOP can revive its share of the Hispanic votes to 2004 levels, the net increase in Democratic votes shrinks to 380,000.

And that doesn’t take into account the effect of comprehensive immigration reform on the larger established Hispanic vote. The first amnestied voters won’t go to the polls for a decade. By then, the established (non-amnestied) Hispanic electorate will be around 35 million, of which around half, or 17.5 million will actually vote. Under current voting patterns, the GOP will receive about 4.72 million of those votes. If the GOP share of the Hispanic votes rises to 2000 levels, it will receive 6.13 million votes and if it rises to 2004 levels it will receive 7.7 million votes for a net increase of between 1.41 million and 3.02 million votes. Thus a path to citizenship, taken on its own, will likely lead to a net increase of between 380,000 and 900,000 Democratic votes, but the overall effect of comprehensive immigration reform will likely be a net Republican gain of between 500,000 and 2.6 million votes.

What about the risk that amnesty will just induce another wave of illegal immigration?

I agree that’s a real problem. That’s why I oppose comprehensive immigration reform at the moment. At least until we control the Senate, preferably until we retake the White House in 2016.

* In fairness, Murphy did make some of these points, or points of a similar nature.

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  1. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.: Sounds reasonable. However, the last time we tried it the perception didn’t change nor was the issue removed from the debate. Why would things work differently this time on either of these measures?

    The problem with the IRCA of 1986 was that there really wasn’t much in the way of enforcement, either at the border or at the point of employment. E-verify has dramatically improved the potential for enforcement at the point of employment and I think it possible to insist on a fence being completed before legalization is triggered. Basically, I think a combination of advances in technology and learning from past political mistakes makes real enforcement attainable.

     Ok. How will demanding e-verify and/or a fence this time improve our chances of changing the perception or succeed in removing the issue from the debate?

    • #121
  2. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager: John McCain has been a historical Republican champion of immigration reform. He got 31% of the Hispanic vote.

    In 2008 McCain positioned himself as an immigration hawk. Beyond that, the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote occurred two years before McCain was the nominee. McCain received the same proportion of the Hispanic vote in 2008 as Republicans did generally in the 2006 midterms. By the time McCain ran for president the GOP generally had a problem with the Hispanic vote.

    So McCain was engaging in the “off-putting rhetoric” then?

    His rhetoric was not particularly off-putting. That of other immigration hawks was more so. Look, I think a lot of our problem could be solved if we were better at phrasing our position, but I don’t think that is very likely to happen.

     Agreed. McCain was a terrible candidate. Romney was terrible candidate. Bush was just barely less-terrible enough to get elected twice – barely. So if the problem is phrasing (not just on immigration, btw), how hard is it, how many years do we need, what preternatural wordsmith is required, to get it right?

    • #122
  3. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager: John McCain has been a historical Republican champion of immigration reform. He got 31% of the Hispanic vote.

    In 2008 McCain positioned himself as an immigration hawk. Beyond that, the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote occurred two years before McCain was the nominee. McCain received the same proportion of the Hispanic vote in 2008 as Republicans did generally in the 2006 midterms. By the time McCain ran for president the GOP generally had a problem with the Hispanic vote.

     How do you distinguish this from the problems with the Hispanic vote that the GOP had in 1988 and 1992. For your position to work, the 1986 Amnesty had to poison the well for George HW Bush.  McCain in this “bad” time (post 2005) did better than Bush in both elections following Amnesty. If you acknowledge that the George HW Bush elections actually happened your argument that immigration policy and rhetoric are what keeps Hispanics from voting for /listening to Republicans does not work.  Voting for is the important part of the equation, we get nothing from Hispanics really liking the GOP, or are even just OK with Republicans, if they keep voting Democrat. 

    • #123
  4. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.: Sounds reasonable. However, the last time we tried it the perception didn’t change nor was the issue removed from the debate. Why would things work differently this time on either of these measures?

    The problem with the IRCA of 1986 was that there really wasn’t much in the way of enforcement, either at the border or at the point of employment. E-verify has dramatically improved the potential for enforcement at the point of employment and I think it possible to insist on a fence being completed before legalization is triggered. Basically, I think a combination of advances in technology and learning from past political mistakes makes real enforcement attainable.

    Ok. How will demanding e-verify and/or a fence this time improve our chances of changing the perception or succeed in removing the issue from the debate?

     Once the bill is passed the issue will recede from prominence.

    • #124
  5. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    Tom Meyer:

    Salvatore Padula: I think it’s worth distinguishing between truly committed leftists who use the charge of racism as a tactic against the GOP, and less ideological or politically aware rank and file Hispanic voters who look at the way much of the GOP talks about immigration and conclude that the GOP is unwelcoming to Hispanics. Those in the first category are unreachable. Those in the second would be in play if we handled things right.

    Seconded.

     I used the African-Americans recent voting history as evidence that no matter what Republicans say or do has no effect. Actually the black vote for Democrats has continued to go up. it’s nearly unanimous. Only a minority of black folks are committed leftists. In fact there are a host of blacks who are quite conservative, work, go to church and pay taxes and these folk have little reason to vote D, yet they do, all because of the ‘perception’.

    So what was your argument again?

    Oh, that we can reach the politically unaware, non-ideological hispanics? The ones most susceptible to group-think and tribalism – the ones who take their cues from celebrities and the ones who, when presented with the entire case for and against immigration reform, conclude that the entire GOP is racist.

    Apparently, it is these people who are engaging in stereotyping and smearing. I would say that only a small minority of Republicans are bigots (and probably the same number of bigots as Democrats) yet somehow the entire party is not worth voting for due to this issue?  

    When presented with hispanic-friendly candidates who actually want to pass CIR, like Bush and McCain, they turn up their noses. Why? Because other GOPers are racist? Another revered Republican, Ronald Reagan, granted amnesty in 1986 and there seems to be no credit or even memory. It makes no sense, unless they see the world in terms of tribalism. Then it makes sense.

    The ones you think can be reached are incurious, detached, and tribal. Why else would they react against the entire Republican party because they don’t like how some Republican phrased something? There are a lot of reasons to vote for Republicans besides immigration reform. How does this become a single-issue unless the person is inordinately concerned with his/her tribe? 

    When the GOP tries to pander they are reinforcing tribalism in the hispanic community and undoing any possible gains on the ideology front. 

    Moreover, you are engaging in magical thinking . As if somehow we have the power to censor and stifle every person who is associated with the GOP who isn’t four-square on board with amnesty. As long as there is anyone, I repeat, anyone, associated with the GOP who says something that some Hispanics find offensive, then there will be no change and it will keep getting worse. 

    • #125
  6. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Salvatore Padula:   Once the bill is passed the issue will recede from prominence.

     Doesn’t that really depend on what the bill says, whether enforcement actually happens or is just words, how it is perceived by Republicans and how it is perceived by Hispanics.  That is still a lot of moving parts. Obamacare passed and has not “receded from prominence”, details and implementation matter. 

    • #126
  7. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Jager:

    Salvatore Padula: Once the bill is passed the issue will recede from prominence.

    Doesn’t that really depend on what the bill says, whether enforcement actually happens or is just words, how it is perceived by Republicans and how it is perceived by Hispanics. That is still a lot of moving parts. Obamacare passed and has not “receded from prominence”, details and implementation matter.

     I agree, though I think it possible for enforcement to work. Obamacare would recede from prominence if it worked.

    • #127
  8. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    More generally, you seem to be of the opinion that and less I can show support for amnesty would win Hispanic votes my argument falls apart. This is a misunderstanding of my position. I do not claim that support for amnesty will win the GOP Hispanic votes. My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

    • #128
  9. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

     And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    • #129
  10. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

    • #130
  11. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    …..

    More generally, you seem to be of the opinion that and less I can show support for amnesty would win Hispanic votes my argument falls apart. This is a misunderstanding of my position. I do not claim that support for amnesty will win the GOP Hispanic votes. My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

    But what you have been suggesting is meant by comprehensive immigration reform (mainly enforcement first) is already a widely-accepted position on the right, but is that what the other side thinks of when they say comprehensive immigration reform? Isn’t it precisely our insistence on real enforcement that is the killer of CIR deals and that contributes to the unfavorable perception? And doesn’t comprehensive immigration reform without real enforcement amount to amnesty?

    • #131
  12. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

     That leaves you with one single data point. Is that a sufficient basis for your claim?

    • #132
  13. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

     Besides, no Obama but an extremely unpopular Bush and war. There are always other factors.

    • #133
  14. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Franco- regarding the comparison of the African American and Hispanic votes, I think there are some similarities, but direct extrapolation from the former to the latter goes too far. As I mentions to Liz when she made a similar point to yours, blacks have been a solid ~90% constituency for Democrats for at least a generation. By contrast, as recently as a decade ago the GOP won close to half the Hispanic vote.

    • #134
  15. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    …..

    More generally, you seem to be of the opinion that and less I can show support for amnesty would win Hispanic votes my argument falls apart. This is a misunderstanding of my position. I do not claim that support for amnesty will win the GOP Hispanic votes. My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

     Our position is costing votes. If we eliminate the cost by changing our position, isn’t that the same as winning more votes?

    • #135
  16. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    …..

    More generally, you seem to be of the opinion that and less I can show support for amnesty would win Hispanic votes my argument falls apart. This is a misunderstanding of my position. I do not claim that support for amnesty will win the GOP Hispanic votes. My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

    But what you have been suggesting is meant by comprehensive immigration reform (mainly enforcement first) is already a widely-accepted position on the right, but is that what the other side thinks of when they say comprehensive immigration reform? Isn’t it precisely our insistence on real enforcement that is the killer of CIR deals and that contributes to the unfavorable perception? And doesn’t comprehensive immigration reform without real enforcement amount to amnesty?

     That’s why I oppose CIR at present. I think it will require Republicans in power before we can pass something with effective enforcement.

    • #136
  17. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    ….. By contrast, as recently as a decade ago the GOP won close to half the Hispanic vote.

     And as recently as a decade before that, the GOP took less than McCain and Romney did despite having agreed to a deal that was much friendlier to immigration than any current deals being suggested..

    • #137
  18. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    …..

    More generally, you seem to be of the opinion that and less I can show support for amnesty would win Hispanic votes my argument falls apart. This is a misunderstanding of my position. I do not claim that support for amnesty will win the GOP Hispanic votes. My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

    Our position is costing votes. If we eliminate the cost by changing our position, isn’t that the same as winning more votes?

     Not quite. Changing our position will not return those votes to us on its own. It will remove an impediment to our making our broader case on the merits. I would analogize it like this: immigration is like putting a weight on a runner. That makes him slower. If you remove the weight he returns to his natural speed.

    • #138
  19. user_3444 Coolidge
    user_3444
    @JosephStanko

    Ed G.: But what you have been suggesting is meant by comprehensive immigration reform (mainly enforcement first) is already a widely-accepted position on the right, but is that what the other side thinks of when they say comprehensive immigration reform? Isn’t it precisely our insistence on real enforcement that is the killer of CIR deals and that contributes to the unfavorable perception?

    I think the unfavorable perception is that our side is against immigration and immigrants, period.  The perception is that we are against any increase in legal immigration, that we want to build a fence and moat on the border, then either forcibly deport all the illegal immigrants already here or else wait for them to “self deport.”  That we see them as threat to our culture, our way of life, the English language, as just here to sponge off welfare, and of course “they took our jobs.”

    Also, I think there are a fair number of people on our side who really do hold the position I just outlined.  I have no idea what the percentages are, but this position does exist, and makes its views known loudly online and on talk radio.

    • #139
  20. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    …..

    …..Isn’t it precisely our insistence on real enforcement that is the killer of CIR deals and that contributes to the unfavorable perception? And doesn’t comprehensive immigration reform without real enforcement amount to amnesty?

    That’s why I oppose CIR at present. I think it will require Republicans in power before we can pass something with effective enforcement.

     So you’re not restating Murphy’s case in better terms then, you’re basically arguing Kaus’s case. Because it sounds like Murphy does support CIR now whether or not the enforcement piece is solid because he does think that will win us more Hispanic votes.

    Now, if we need Hispanic votes to get control of all levers but our current position (the same position you want to take when we do get all the levers) is preventing it, then how do you propose to go about attaining the levers and keeping control of them once we implement the same policy that’s costing us votes now?

    • #140
  21. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    ….. By contrast, as recently as a decade ago the GOP won close to half the Hispanic vote.

    And as recently as a decade before that, the GOP took less than McCain and Romney did despite having agreed to a deal that was much friendlier to immigration than any current deals being suggested..

     Dole lost the election by twenty points. He did poorly everywhere. Anyway, my point was that the Hispanic vote is not inherently set in stone against us.

    • #141
  22. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

    That leaves you with one single data point. Is that a sufficient basis for your claim?

     Well there’s the 2010 midterms and the 2012 election. In 2012 much of the historic appeal of Obama had worn off.

    • #142
  23. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Joseph Stanko:

    Ed G.: But what you have been suggesting is meant by comprehensive immigration reform (mainly enforcement first) is already a widely-accepted position on the right, but is that what the other side thinks of when they say comprehensive immigration reform? Isn’t it precisely our insistence on real enforcement that is the killer of CIR deals and that contributes to the unfavorable perception?

    I think the unfavorable perception is that our side is against immigration and immigrants, period. The perception is that we are against any increase in legal immigration, that we want to build a fence and moat on the border, then either forcibly deport all the illegal immigrants already here or else wait for them to “self deport.” That we see them as threat to our culture, our way of life, the English language, as just here to sponge off welfare, and of course “they took our jobs.”

    ……

    If we drop the fence idea and don’t push e-verify, will that change the perception?

    • #143
  24. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

    Besides, no Obama but an extremely unpopular Bush and war. There are always other factors.

     Do you think the war was particularly unpopular among Hispanics? The GOP Hispanic vote declined by more than twice as much as the general GOP vote.

    • #144
  25. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Ed G.:

    Salvatore Padula:

    Jager-On the 1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    …..

    And 2008 was an historic election involving a black candidate. There are always other factors.

    That’s why I think 2006 provides a better data point. No Obama.

    That leaves you with one single data point. Is that a sufficient basis for your claim?

    Well there’s the 2010 midterms and the 2012 election. In 2012 much of the historic appeal of Obama had worn off.

     Or we returned to normal after the outlier that was W.

    Or the historic appeal of Obama hadn’t worn off as much as you say and the effect from the 2006 CIR vote (8 years ago!) isn’t as deep as you suggest.

    • #145
  26. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    What made W an outlier? How did he appeal to Hispanics? Is it a coincidence that the two republican candidates (Reagan and W) who did best among Hispanics were also pro CIR?

    • #146
  27. user_653084 Inactive
    user_653084
    @SalvatorePadula

    Ed- I’ve a wager for you. I’ll bet you a bottle of the liquor of your choice that if the GOP is in the majority and the White House in 2017 Kaus will still oppose CIR.

    • #147
  28. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Salvatore Padula:

     1988 and 1992 elections: the decline in the GOP Hispanic vote in 1988 was half that of the decline experience between 2004 and 2006. 1992 is not a particularly good data point for comparison, as it was a three-way presidential race.

    My argument is that opposition to comprehensive immigration reform, and particularly the way in which that opposition is expressed, costs the GOP Hispanic votes it would otherwise be able to contend for.

     If your position is taking Immigration off the table lets the GOP contend for Hispanic votes, then 1992 shows that without Immigration as an issue 61% of Hispanics vote Democrat and 14% would rather vote for a political novice then listen to the GOP.

    I understand that you want to contend for these votes, I just don’t see the evidence to support your position that but for the immigration issue we would get more Hispanic voters, it hasn’t worked in the past. You have identified that there are current republican voters who hate Comprehensive Reform. If you are going to alienate these voters you have to have replacement voters not just the chance for a conversation, that may not work at all.

    • #148
  29. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Joseph Stanko:

    …..

    I think the unfavorable perception is that our side is against immigration and immigrants, period. The perception is that we are against any increase in legal immigration, that we want to build a fence and moat on the border, then either forcibly deport all the illegal immigrants already here or else wait for them to “self deport.” That we see them as threat to our culture, our way of life, the English language, as just here to sponge off welfare, and of course “they took our jobs.”

    Also, I think there are a fair number of people on our side who really do hold the position I just outlined. I have no idea what the percentages are, but this position does exist, and makes its views known loudly online and on talk radio.

     There are legitimate concerns about culture, welfare state, and employment levels. More specifically, though, do you think the fence indicates a hateful position? Do you think e-verify is a hateful position considering that it’s meant to not only prevent new illegal immigration but also to force self-deportation of illegal immigrants due to lack of opportunity for continued employment?

    • #149
  30. Ed G. Inactive
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Salvatore Padula:

    What made W an outlier? How did he appeal to Hispanics? Is it a coincidence that the two republican candidates (Reagan and W) who did best among Hispanics were also pro CIR?

     Well that’s the key then. Publicly support CIR but refuse to vote for any specific proposal since once it’s passed we lose the Hispanic votes right away.

    • #150
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