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How the Democrats Lost Their Way on Immigration

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posted on Jan, 9 2019 @ 11:51 PM
How the Democrats Lost Their Way on Immigration

I heard of this artical while listening to a conservative talk show host yesterday who was trying to make a point as to why the countries liberal leaders have been hell bent on opposing Trump's boarder wall.

The talk show host was using the article, written by a liberal [Peter Beinart] in a liberal publication [the Atlantic], as a tool to show his audience that liberals support illegal immigration only as a means to fulfill their thrust for power ... and that they freely admit to it ... as demonstrated by an article writen by a liberal in a liberal publication that [in part] admits [blames] the Democrarct evolution over the last decade from being critical of illegal immigration to now fully embracing it on a desire to court the latino vote as a means to win elections.

Of course the conservative talk show host was cherry picking portions of the artical to bolster his argument; but after reading the full article I found it to be very balanced and pragmatic for a liberal writing for a liberal publication. It goes far beyond the blame the conservative talk show host wanted to highlight and articulates a viable path forward for Democrats on the issue.

I encourage people to read the whole article, its long and I can't address it all here.

First Beinart starts of explaining where Democrat/liberal leaders use to stand on the issue of illegal immigration.

In 2005, a left-leaning blogger wrote, “Illegal immigration wreaks havoc economically, socially, and culturally; makes a mockery of the rule of law; and is disgraceful just on basic fairness grounds alone.” In 2006, a liberal columnist wrote that “immigration reduces the wages of domestic workers who compete with immigrants” and that “the fiscal burden of low-wage immigrants is also pretty clear.” His conclusion: “We’ll need to reduce the inflow of low-skill immigrants.” That same year, a Democratic senator wrote, “When I see Mexican flags waved at proimmigration demonstrations, I sometimes feel a flush of patriotic resentment. When I’m forced to use a translator to communicate with the guy fixing my car, I feel a certain frustration.”

The blogger was Glenn Greenwald. The columnist was Paul Krugman. The senator was Barack Obama.

Prominent liberals didn’t oppose immigration a decade ago. Most acknowledged its benefits to America’s economy and culture. They supported a path to citizenship for the undocumented. Still, they routinely asserted that low-skilled immigrants depressed the wages of low-skilled American workers and strained America’s welfare state. And they were far more likely than liberals today are to acknowledge that, as Krugman put it, “immigration is an intensely painful topic … because it places basic principles in conflict.”

He than of course explains times have changed.

By 2016, such language was gone. The party’s platform described America’s immigration system as a problem, but not illegal immigration itself. And it focused almost entirely on the forms of immigration enforcement that Democrats opposed.

Much to the conservative talk show host's pleasure Beinart does attribute this change in additude to liberal leaders wanting to win elections.

Between 2008 and 2016, Democrats became more and more confident that the country’s growing Latino population gave the party an electoral edge. To win the presidency, Democrats convinced themselves, they didn’t need to reassure white people skeptical of immigration so long as they turned out their Latino base. “The fastest-growing sector of the American electorate stampeded toward the Democrats this November,” Salon declared after Obama’s 2008 win. “If that pattern continues, the GOP is doomed to 40 years of wandering in a desert.”

...As the Democrats grew more reliant on Latino votes, they were more influenced by pro-immigrant activism.

...Alongside pressure from pro-immigrant activists came pressure from corporate America, especially the Democrat-aligned tech industry, which uses the H-1B visa program to import workers.

...This combination of Latino and corporate activism made it perilous for Democrats to discuss immigration’s costs, as Bernie Sanders learned the hard way.

What happened to Sanders, for not following the special intrest and big tech game plan?

In July 2015, two months after officially announcing his candidacy for president, Sanders was interviewed by Ezra Klein, the editor in chief of Vox. Klein asked whether, in order to fight global poverty, the U.S. should consider “sharply raising the level of immigration we permit, even up to a level of open borders.” Sanders reacted with horror. “That’s a Koch brothers proposal,” he scoffed.

Sanders came under immediate attack. Vox’s Dylan Matthews declared that his “fear of immigrant labor is ugly—and wrongheaded.” The president of accused Sanders of “the sort of backward-looking thinking that progressives have rightly moved away from in the past years.

Sanders stopped emphasizing immigration’s costs. By January 2016,’s policy director noted with satisfaction that he had “evolved on this issue.”

Now maybe the evolution is a good thing. Maybe illegal immigration is a benefit to society and Sanders was being wrong headed and did need to be put in his place.

Beinart is sceptical... good sceptical, not conservative talk show host sceptical.

progressive commentators now routinely claim that there’s a near-consensus among economists on immigration’s benefits.

There isn’t. According to a comprehensive new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, “Groups comparable to … immigrants in terms of their skill may experience a wage reduction as a result of immigration-induced increases in labor supply.” 

And apparently there is a bit of a hush hush cover up about it.

But academics sometimes de-emphasize this wage reduction because, like liberal journalists and politicians, they face pressures to support immigration.

Many of the immigration scholars regularly cited in the press have worked for, or received funding from, pro-immigration businesses and associations. 

...Academics face cultural pressures too. In his book Exodus, Paul Collier, an economist at the University of Oxford, claims that in their “desperate [desire] not to give succor” to nativist bigots, “social scientists have strained every muscle to show that migration is good for everyone.” George Borjas of Harvard argues that since he began studying immigration in the 1980s, his fellow economists have grown far less tolerant of research that emphasizes its costs. 

The problem for liberals ... hence why a liberal is being critical of his tribe.

The problem is that, although economists differ about the extent of the damage, immigration hurts the Americans with whom immigrants compete. And since more than a quarter of America’s recent immigrants lack even a high-school diploma or its equivalent, immigration particularly hurts the least-educated native workers, the very people who are already struggling the most. America’s immigration system, in other words, pits two of the groups liberals care about most—the native-born poor and the immigrant poor—against each other.

posted on Jan, 9 2019 @ 11:51 PM
He provides solutions.

One way of mitigating this problem would be to scrap the current system, which allows immigrants living in the U.S. to bring certain close relatives to the country, in favor of what Donald Trump in February called a “merit based” approach that prioritizes highly skilled and educated workers. 

A better answer is to take some of the windfall that immigration brings to wealthier Americans and give it to those poorer Americans whom immigration harms. Borjas has suggested taxing the high-tech, agricultural, and service-sector companies that profit from cheap immigrant labor and using the money to compensate those Americans who are displaced by it.

But the author feels there is a greater path forward than these simple policies. And it starts with accepting a truth about the human condition.

studies by the Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam and others suggest that greater diversity makes Americans less charitable and less willing to redistribute wealth. People tend to be less generous when large segments of society don’t look or talk like them. Surprisingly, Putnam’s research suggests that greater diversity doesn’t reduce trust and cooperation just among people of different races or ethnicities—it also reduces trust and cooperation among people of the same race and ethnicity.

Trump appears to sense this. His implicit message during the campaign was that if the government kept out Mexicans and Muslims, white, Christian Americans would not only grow richer and safer, they would also regain the sense of community that they identified with a bygone age. “At the bedrock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the United States of America,” he declared in his inaugural address, “and through our loyalty to our country, we will rediscover our loyalty to each other.”

So how do you fix this deleterious effect of diversity?

Liberals must take seriously Americans’ yearning for social cohesion. To promote both mass immigration and greater economic redistribution, they must convince more native-born white Americans that immigrants will not weaken the bonds of national identity. This means dusting off a concept many on the left currently hate: assimilation.

Promoting assimilation need not mean expecting immigrants to abandon their culture. But it does mean breaking down the barriers that segregate them from the native-born. And it means celebrating America’s diversity less, and its unity more.

And what should Democrats do to make this happen?

The next Democratic presidential candidate should say again and again that because Americans are one people, who must abide by one law, his or her goal is to reduce America’s undocumented population to zero. For liberals, the easy part of fulfilling that pledge is supporting a path to citizenship for the undocumented who have put down roots in the United States. The hard part, which Hillary Clinton largely ignored in her 2016 presidential run, is backing tough immigration enforcement so that path to citizenship doesn’t become a magnet that entices more immigrants to enter the U.S. illegally.

... In 2014, the University of California listed melting pot as a term it considered a “microaggression.” What if Hillary Clinton had traveled to one of its campuses and called that absurd? What if she had challenged elite universities to celebrate not merely multiculturalism and globalization but Americanness? What if she had said more boldly that the slowing rate of English-language acquisition was a problem she was determined to solve? What if she had acknowledged the challenges that mass immigration brings, and then insisted that Americans could overcome those challenges by focusing not on what makes them different but on what makes them the same?

Some on the left would have howled. But I suspect that Clinton would be president today.

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 02:12 AM
I agree with the assessment alluded to in the article. My question is why do most liberals go along with the insanity just because the party changed its tune? Don’t they realize they are being played? Are they just in that by any means necessary mentality?

Destroying a country just to rule it is illogical.

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 08:32 AM

originally posted by: Metallicus
I agree with the assessment alluded to in the article. My question is why do most liberals go along with the insanity just because the party changed its tune? Don’t they realize they are being played? Are they just in that by any means necessary mentality?

Destroying a country just to rule it is illogical

dems live for political power. this issue enables them to get money form superwealthy progressive donors, and votes from the Hispanic and 'woke' white community. the greater good of the USA is irrelevant.

the democrats would be perfectly happy for the USA to become a cesspool as long as they are in charge. they will continue to have their gated mansions and Aspen ski trips and Hawaii vacations.
and thousands and thousands of brain-dead zombie voters will obey their teachers and the tv people and make this happen.

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 09:47 AM
a reply to: DanDanDat

Democrats see the masses of poor and uneducated illegal immigrants as a future voting block. It really is that simple.

They previously were against illegal immigration because of their support by blue collar / union workers. The base that they essentially abandoned which led to Trump getting elected.

Democrats know illegal immigration hurts wages and the lower class as this is one of the reasons they were against it originally. They are on record. The only people that don't seem to be aware of this is their short memory NPC base voters.

Strategically, they think there is more to gain by currying favor with the illegal immigrants than the working class. In addition, many of the liberal power elite support illegal immigration because their companies also benefit from it (much in the same way that the establishment Republicans also support illegal immigration to benefit corporations).

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 12:40 PM
Edumakated, star for you, another not handicapped by political correctness, yay

the DNC Party operatives, obedient to the deep-state, have nothing confused with the illegal immigrants/migrants/ border-jumpers...

they (the immigrants/refugees + or any other glorified name given them) are the 'voters' of tomorrow because they will be given another round-or-two of 'Amnesty' as time-goes-by and 'they' are not caught and deported sooner.

these 'seedling-voters' were beckoned here during the POTUS 44 era, by ADs & OP-Eds in many South & Central American Countries newspapers, with promises of free living & boundless resources lavished upon their entire multi-generation families at no cost but All their future votes going to the Democrat Party (vote-germination then vote-harvesting)
~~~all the immigrant/migration/refugee/asylum seeker labels are just code-words for voter-bloc~~~
edit on th31154714592210452019 by St Udio because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 01:31 PM
a reply to: Edumakated

I think the auther would agree with you ... although given his place on the political spectrum he sees the problem as less ominous than Democrats just wanting power, and more to do with mistakenly abandoning one core constituency because they are overly focused on another.

What I found interesting is the authors argument for Democratic leaders to break away from the new orthodoxy in favor of a more inclusive approach to dealing with illegals immigration; ie including the conserons of native born Americans, and whites specifically, instead of ignoring or berating those conserons. And that it could only be through this inclusivity that liberals could ever hope to reach their professed goals of combatting poverty and bigotry.

In this current time; If the Author really does hold the opinions he is writing about he would have to urge Democrat Congressmen to fund the boarder wall. Not because it will be effective at stopping illegal immigration or drug and human trafficking, but because it would go a long way to include the concerns of those citizens who are uneasy with the influxes of new immigrants and send a message to the new immigrants that 'while America is willing to accept new immigrants, the invitation is not open ended and does have conditions of asimalation attached to it'.

The symbol of America should be the Statue of Liberty, not a thirty-foot wall.

No Senator the symbols of America should be both the Statue of Liberty and a thirty-foot wall. We will accept the tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free but on terms that they follow our laws and assimilate into the American culture (which is a melting pot of many world cultures).

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 01:37 PM

originally posted by: Metallicus
I agree with the assessment alluded to in the article. My question is why do most liberals go along with the insanity just because the party changed its tune? Don’t they realize they are being played? Are they just in that by any means necessary mentality?

Destroying a country just to rule it is illogical.

Destroying all of Europe just to rule it is the very essence of the Kalergi Plan.
The Kalergi Plan is openly supported by leftists and liberals the whole world over.
Hell, the hold Angela Merkel in high regard so they’re definitely on board with destroying a country just to rule it.
The Kalergi Plan most definitely applies to ALL western societies, the USA included.

posted on Jan, 10 2019 @ 01:40 PM
a reply to: Edumakated

“The only people that don't seem to be aware of this is their short memory NPC base voters.”


But that’s exactly what they rely on, low-info easily-manipulated voters.

“Tell us what to think Jimmy Kimmel”

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