The Democrats’ Trump Card

 

TrumpPresident Obama seems on the verge of the most abject diplomatic capitulation in American history – to Iran, our bitterest enemy – and Republicans are arguing about Donald Trump? The prospect of a deal with Iran is dumbfounding and infuriating, as the U.S. held all the cards in the protracted negotiations and yet executed serial surrenders to the Iranians, rather like a courtier bowing his way backwards from a monarch.

While the Obama Administration is paving the way for a possible mushroom cloud over Tel Aviv or New York in the near term, we’re all tying ourselves in knots about what Donald Trump said about Mexicans. The Democrats seem to have a Trump card.

Immigration arouses tremendous rage among both left and right. The left, always panting to push grievance buttons, transforms illegal immigrants into yet another clientele – as if those who enter the country illegally are entitled to legal status, benefits, and even citizenship. They establish “sanctuary cities” as if enforcing immigration laws amounts to persecution.

This drives the right crazy. You don’t break into my house and then demand the keys, they fume. While I like a good brawl as much as the next person, it seems that Trump is the answer only if the question is: Why can’t we get more oafish egomaniacs into politics? Just when the Republican Party needs finesse and sensitivity when discussing immigration; just when it needs to focus on issues that unite all sectors of the electorate including Hispanic and Asian voters; it gets a blowhard with all the nuance of a grenade.

Trump’s smear about Mexican immigrants was about as far away as you can get from Ronald Reagan’s “Hispanics are Republicans, they just don’t know it.” He tarred most Mexican immigrants as drug-dealers, criminals, and rapists, allowing only as an afterthought that some may be good people. He claimed to have discussed the matter with border guards. (Would those officers please step forward?) In any case, crude and vulgar people always preen that they are brave truth tellers.

Trump has achieved his objective – making himself the center of attention — but he has subtracted from our sum total of knowledge about the immigration issue. According to an analysis of Census Bureau data by the Immigration Policy Center, only 1.6 percent of immigrant males between the ages of 18-39 are incarcerated, compared with 3.3 percent of the native-born. There are terrible stories of immigrants committing crimes, and it’s certainly fair to demand that criminal aliens be deported with dispatch. Sanctuary cities are a disgrace. But just as Dylann Roof doesn’t represent white people, Mexican rapists don’t represent anyone other than themselves either.

Oddly, the entire brouhaha over immigration may be misplaced. If demographers are correct, the great wave of immigration from Latin America is over. As Jonathan V. Last noted in the Los Angeles Times, birth rates are plunging throughout our hemisphere. Between 1970 and 2005, Mexico was the source for roughly two-thirds of the million or so immigrants who entered the United States yearly. When this huge migration began, Mexico’s birthrate was 6.72 children per woman. It has since fallen to 2.1, and it continues to decline. Last writes: “Countries with fertility rates below the replacement level tend to attract immigrants, not send them.” And voilà, since 2005 net migration from Mexico has been zero.

The Census Bureau reports that starting in 2013, the country that sent the most immigrants to the U.S. was China with 147,000, followed by India with 129,000, and Mexico with 125,000 (an equal number of Mexicans living here went home). Other Latin American nations whose fertility rates have already dropped below replacement – Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, and Costa Rica – send virtually no immigrants north.

Some immigrants will doubtless continue to arrive. As Tamar Jacoby of ImmigrationWorks USA put it, “Once they see that you don’t have to bribe the police here, they’re satisfied.” There remains much to recommend the U.S. as a destination, and we’ve been lucky that our neighbors to the south roughly share our religion and civilization (unlike the Muslim immigrants who’ve flooded Europe during the same period). But with world fertility rates declining, the U.S. may face an unexpected problem – too few immigrants. In 1960, half of the U.S. workforce consisted of high school dropouts. Today, it’s only 6 percent. Yet the jobs for low skilled workers – busboys, chambermaids, food processing – remain. If employers cannot find workers for those jobs, there will be fewer managerial and executive positions for native-born Americans.

It’s a complex subject that deserves grown-up discussion – exactly what Trump and his claque preclude.

There are 64 comments.

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  1. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno
    @TommyDeSeno

    Mona Charen:According to an analysis of Census Bureau data by the Immigration Policy Center, only 1.6 percent of immigrant males between the ages of 18-39 are incarcerated, compared with 3.3 percent of the native-born.

    Does anyone have crime stats for illegal immigrants?

    • #1
  2. user_1065645 Podcaster
    user_1065645
    @DaveSussman

    In agreement. The Left welcomes Trump. He’s their ‘identity squirrel’ as Todd Akin was in 2012.

    Instead of using a Republican condoning ‘legitimate rape’, it will be a Republican who condones Latino racism and xenophobia. This is the Left’s modus operandi… and for a percentage of voters it always works.

    We all know campaigns are nothing more than bread and circuses, but I will give the DNC credit, at least they have a playbook which they consistently use.

    What is the GOP playbook? Is there one?

    • #2
  3. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    I think nothing would give Reince Preibus and most of the Republican contenders greater pleasure than to call Trump a fake Republican, exclude him from the debates (especially now that he refuses to commit to supporting the eventual nominee), and proceed to ignore him.

    But they’re afraid he’ll run as an independent.

    • #3
  4. Nick Stuart Inactive
    Nick Stuart
    @NickStuart

    Humph, if Trump would just act like a civilised member of the center-right wankerati, everything would be fine. You know, like Gentleman Johnny McCain and Mild Mitt Romney. Yeah, that’s what we need, another capon at the top of the ticket.

    Do I wish Trump would just pack up and leave, like it is likely he will eventually (especially when he puts a pen to paper and realizes how much this is costing him)? Yes.

    Do I wish bien pensant center right commentators did not feel they are required to soil their hands decrying how The Donald is rocking the boat? Yes.

    Do I wish the Clinton Press Office (otherwise known as the mainstream media) would give Trump the attention he deserves (zero)? Yes. In fact I believe the Clinton Press Office is wall-to-wall Trump because they know it makes the GOP look bad.

    Do I think it a definite possibility Trump will stomp off in a huff and make a 3rd party run? Yes.

    Here’s the thing. There are enough Republican primary voters who are absolutely sick to death of candidates who lack the fortitude to speak up for them on issues important to them (e.g. immigration/sanctuary cities), and who will push back hard on the Clinton media flacks and their gotcha questions, to let Trump hang around blustering and soaking up all the oxygen in the room.

    Until some of the rest of the Republican field strap on their manhood*, step up and speak out, Trump’s going to continue to garner a significant amount of Republican primary voter attention.

    *Not sexist in that Carly Fiorina has demonstrated at least twice the quantity of this attribute as most of the rest of the GOP field put together.

    • #4
  5. JimGoneWild Coolidge
    JimGoneWild
    @JimGoneWild

    Mona Charen: Trump’s smear about Mexican immigrants was about as far away as you can get from Ronald Reagan’s “Hispanics are Republicans, they just don’t know it.” He tarred most Mexican immigrants as drug-dealers, criminals, and rapists, allowing only as an afterthought that some may be good people. He claimed to have discussed the matter with border guards. (Would those officers please step forward?) In any case, crude and vulgar people always preen that they are brave truth tellers.

    Someone please quote Trump’s speech. I believe he spoke of ILLEGAL immigrants. “Crude and vulgar”–Really? I would have choose: base, pedestrian, clunky, but “crude”? “Vulgar”? Now, I didn’t hear a swear word or a cuss. No scatological or sexual references. Hmmm? Mona, you don’t like Trump, but don’t sound off like the liberal media. And if you have to sight birth statistics to put down Trumps comments, something is wrong.

    • #5
  6. user_370242 Inactive
    user_370242
    @Mikescapes

    I’m so relieved. And here I thought that there was a wave of illegal immigrants crossing the border with Mexico. Apparently, that information was false according to Mona and Tamar Jacoby. In fact there is zero illegal immigration. I knew Mona was an open borders advocate. I never knew Tamar Jacoby was as well. Matter of fact, I never heard of him or his organization. Tamar puts us at ease by reassuring that the good folks from Latin America share our values. What a break!

    So we are to rely on declining birth rates to reduce the problem. And, in fact, we actually need more busboys, so welcome to the US. Additionally, so few Latinos are in jail that claims of crime are grossly exaggerated.

    Given the misleading and speculative nature of the statistics cited in the Post I think I’ll sign on with Dirty Donald’s insensitive commentary.

    • #6
  7. user_44643 Inactive
    user_44643
    @MikeLaRoche

    The GOP establishment and its supporters just don’t want to acknowledge that illegal immigration is a serious problem.

    • #7
  8. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    JimGoneWild:

    Mona Charen: Trump’s smear about Mexican immigrants was about as far away as you can get from Ronald Reagan’s “Hispanics are Republicans, they just don’t know it.” He tarred most Mexican immigrants as drug-dealers, criminals, and rapists, allowing only as an afterthought that some may be good people. He claimed to have discussed the matter with border guards. (Would those officers please step forward?) In any case, crude and vulgar people always preen that they are brave truth tellers.

    Someone please quote Trump’s speech. I believe he spoke of ILLEGAL immigrants. “Crude and vulgar”–Really? I would have choose: base, pedestrian, clunky, but “crude”? “Vulgar”? Now, I didn’t hear a swear word or a cuss. No scatological or sexual references. Hmmm? Mona, you don’t like Trump, but don’t sound off like the liberal media. And if you have to sight birth statistics to put down Trumps comments, something is wrong.

    Indeed.  The modifier “illegal” disappeared after the third paragraph of the OP.

    • #8
  9. Mona Charen Contributor
    Mona Charen
    @MonaCharen

    Just so you know the kind of integrity Trump demonstrates: Trump Hit Romney for Being Too Tough and Too Alienating to Hispanics on Immigration

    • #9
  10. user_477123 Inactive
    user_477123
    @Wolverine

    Mona,
    There are many of us on the right, myself included, that have major concerns about immigration, both legal and illegal. No mainstream candidate of the Republican Party has consistently given voice to our concerns. Even Scott Walker and Rick Santorum have gone back and forth on this issue. Fact is most don’t want to talk about it at all. That is why a showman like Trump is getting this much traction. One of the two major parties should take our legitimate concerns into account. Right now, neither is.

    • #10
  11. user_11047 Inactive
    user_11047
    @barbaralydick

    Leigh: call Trump a fake Republican

    Fake Republican?  He seems at present to be a card-carrying Democrat – doing the Dems bidding.  And doing it quite well for that matter.  Ugly politics all the way around…

    • #11
  12. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Mona Charen:Just so you know the kind of integrity Trump demonstrates: Trump Hit Romney for Being Too Tough and Too Alienating to Hispanics on Immigration

    Conflating legal and illegal immigration doesn’t display much integrity, either.

    • #12
  13. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    Mike LaRoche:The GOP establishment and its supporters just don’t want to acknowledge that illegal immigration is a serious problem.

    But aren’t you missing the bigger issue . . .

    • #13
  14. Pete EE Member
    Pete EE
    @PeteEE

    I notice that your article about why we need to focus on Iran was not mainly about Iran.

    • #14
  15. Howellis Inactive
    Howellis
    @ManWiththeAxe

    Trump can’t go away soon enough for my taste. Instead of debating Republican candidates he should go back to debating Rosie O’Donnell.

    • #15
  16. Butters Inactive
    Butters
    @CommodoreBTC

    Trump fills a vacuum, he’s serving the customer, the voter. He’s doing it poorly, insincerely, but he’s the only option on the menu. Voters care about immigration (legal and illegal). The other GOP candidates aren’t demonstrating they understand that concern.

    It was embarrassing watching Jeb suddenly pipe up about ending sanctuary cities only after a pretty girl gets killed. He’s an open borders guy.

    There’s nothing complex about stopping illegal immigration and controlling legal immigration. The other candidates just won’t do it.

    • #16
  17. WI Con Member
    WI Con
    @WICon

    Well I shaw is sorry! I, I , I jes make my mark right by dat box wiff de “R” an leave da thinkin to you folks in DC

    • #17
  18. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Mona Charen: Last writes: “Countries with fertility rates below the replacement level tend to attract immigrants, not send them.”

    Did anyone else note the apparent contradiction that this assertion is almost immediately followed by an assertion of China as the largest source of immigrants?

    • #18
  19. Pete EE Member
    Pete EE
    @PeteEE

    Trump is not my guy. I wish we weren’t talking about him. I can easily imagine that his whole campaign is a false-flag operation. So far we agree.

    Where we disagree is that it is the conservative wing of the republican party that is the problem. While Obama courts disaster in Iran, TPP, immigration and higher education, Boehner attacks his own congressmen. The biggest problem with Trump is that he is not our biggest problem.

    Trump is getting a hearing because he speaks the truth boldly. Nevermind that it is not actually true. On immigration, we are so starved for honesty, we’ll celebrate the scraps we get.

    It seems that the Republican base sits ready to hand a lead to anyone who speaks plainly on immigration. Bush, Rubio and the others can fight over the elitist crony vote.

    P.S. You aren’t helping. “1.6 percent of immigrant males between the ages of 18-39 are incarcerated” and “brouhaha over immigration may be misplaced” “subtract…from our sum total of knowledge about the immigration issue”.

    • #19
  20. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Mona Charen: Other Latin American nations whose fertility rates have already dropped below replacement – Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, and Costa Rica – send virtually no immigrants north.

    I note you do not mention Hondurans, Guatemalans… being fast-tracked through to the US by Mexico.

    • #20
  21. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Mona Charen: ccording to an analysis of Census Bureau data by the Immigration Policy Center, only 1.6 percent of immigrant males between the ages of 18-39 are incarcerated, compared with 3.3 percent of the native-born.

    On one side of the equation, this purports to involve all immigrants, including legal ones and including all those Chinese and Indians you cite. What is the rate for Mexican illegal immigrants?

    On the other side of the equation, what fraction of the native born incarcerateds are anchor babies of Mexican illegal immigrants? What happens when you break the native born crime rate figure down by other demographics to show that the Mexican illegals have substantially higher crime rates than all but one single group of native born?

    • #21
  22. Ario IronStar Inactive
    Ario IronStar
    @ArioIronStar

    Mona Charen:Just so you know the kind of integrity Trump demonstrates: Trump Hit Romney for Being Too Tough and Too Alienating to Hispanics on Immigration

    I do enjoy the NTK podcast, and I look forward to it every week.  Because of that, I do hope you will address the following concern.

    Ms. Charen, as some other commenters have noted, you speak of immigration rather than illegal immigration.  In this, you resemble Democrat politicians and partisans who I can confidently say do not argue in good faith.  I don’t think that is your intent, but you should be aware that it is highly insulting to approach the debate in this way, considering how Democrats consistently slander the likes of most here on Ricochet as “nativist” because we oppose illegal immigration.

    I do not think, and do not wish to believe, that you would behave as they do.  Therefore, I would appreciate it if you would explain how your quotation of below average crime rates for “immigrants” squares with the statistics quoted in this Powerline post:

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2015/07/donald-trump-was-right.php

    i.e. that crime by illegal immigrants is an order of magnitude greater than in the broader population.  It appears that you are quoting statistics for legal immigrants and ignoring the horrible crime statistics for illegals.  Am I wrong about this?  If I am not wrong, is your argument even remotely fair?

    • #22
  23. DocJay Inactive
    DocJay
    @DocJay

    Called a prison cop friend and told him the 1.6 % stat. His comment was ,”that isn’t even close to what’s been on my yards”.

    • #23
  24. wmartin Member
    wmartin
    @

    ctlaw:

     

    On one side of the equation, this purports to involve all immigrants, including legal ones and including all those Chinese and Indians you cite. What is the rate for Mexican illegal immigrants?

    On the other side of the equation, what fraction of the native born incarcerateds are anchor babies of Mexican illegal immigrants? What happens when you break the native born crime rate figure down by other demographics to show that the Mexican illegals have substantially higher crime rates than all but one single group of native born?

    You beat me to it. I was going to ask how Central American illegals (and their anchor babies) compared to the group that is, generally speaking, the base of the Republican Party- white working and middle-class Americans.

    • #24
  25. Ricochet Inactive
    Ricochet
    @SanJoaquinSam

    Trump is a masterful Troll.  He tweeted once “If Hillary Clinton can’t satisfy her husband, what makes her think she can satisfy America?”  That’s graduate level.

    The financial news networks are on at work and election cycles are a nightmare to endure but Trump brings an element of entertainment.  The way he riles the political establishment types is priceless; that he has so many mouthpieces of the Republican party itself in hysterics is even better.

    Mona, come out to ground zero for Latin American immigration–both legal and illegal–here in the San Joaquin Valley of California and witness first hand what a disaster it is for society.  I’ll give you a firsthand tour.  We were promised in both ’65 and ’86 that these drastic changes to immigration policy would not alter the make up of our communities.  Of course that was a lie, not a misunderstanding, but a lie.  Trump is resonating with so many people because finally someone is publicly stating what the rest of us have been witnessing with our own eyes (that this may be some kind of tactic to make any talk of restricting immigration unmentionable, all the while superbly backfiring is hilarious).

    I’m no longer a registered Republican but I vote Republican; however, if it seems whatever candidate wins the nomination is not serious about addressing immigration, first illegal then legal, that’s it for me.  Let it burn.

    • #25
  26. Annefy Member
    Annefy
    @Annefy

    If this election wasn’t so serious and I wasn’t so terrified of H Clinton, or any other D getting elected president, I would be having the time of my life watching all the R elites heads explode over Trump.

    Seriously, the huffing and puffing and posturing and eye rolling is grand theater.

    Do any of you people even ask why Trump is resonating so? I spent last week with a group of serious, conservative Catholics in flyover country.

    And we all reached a conclusion about immigration. Legal, illegal, whatever. It’s the lack of assimilation and the holding onto a culture and a way of doing things that they bloody well traveled hundreds or thousands of miles to get away from. And for speaking to that frustration everyone would have given Trump a high five.

    It’s waving a Mexican flag at a graduation ceremony when you came here illegally and got educated thanks to American taxpayers.

    And I love the crime statistics being bandied about like anyone even has a clue. What’s the percentage of women raped while trying to get across the border? The percentage of young teenagers who find themselves mothers whose parents don’t think it’s a big deal?

    We as a society are no longer capable of inspiring immigrants to become Americans like my parents did 60 years ago. We can’t even manage to make Americans out of the people born here for God’s sake.

    Why is that?

    • #26
  27. Annefy Member
    Annefy
    @Annefy

    I was living in Scotland in the 70s when there was massive immigration to Britain. All the people in charge of things were talking multi-culturalism, blah, blah, blah while they threw open the doors.

    The citizens knew intuitively it was all going to go to hell; at the time I thought they were just bigots.

    In hindsight I realize they knew that their culture and country was no longer deemed worthy to fight for and hang on to by the people running the place.

    And the citizens were right. The place has gone to hell in a handbasket.

    • #27
  28. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Lectures rationalizing the acceptance of progressive goals are more destructive than any number of blowhards who at least will fight.

    The contemptible lack of spine from our GOP betters is the weakness which invites this sort of thing.  So Hit ’em again, Hairpiece!

    Make it hurt.

    • #28
  29. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Ms. Charen, for what should we politely negotiate?  Enforcement of existing laws please?  Or should we cede that immediately and begin discussion of new laws, which will also not be enforced?

    Why must Americans negotiate sovereignty over our own country?  And with whom?

    • #29
  30. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    The first two paragraphs are the same sort of “watch the hands, not the feet” shuffle that we get from progressives.  Shame on you conservatives for complaining about the surrender on the border, culture, economy, citizenship, and sovereignty itself.  You should concern yourselves instead with complaining about secret negotiations conducted between the US Government and the Iranian, both of which see Iranian nukes as unobjectionable and unavoidable.

    Unless you are Tom Cotton or any other actual conservative in a place of influence — then it will be your fault if the talks break down, and you should hang your head in shame, and learn Spanish while you’re at it; and I don’t mean like they speak it in Spain, cabron,

    • #30

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