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On immigration, Democrats should admit they are wrong - The Washington Post

  

Category:  Op/Ed

Via:  vic-eldred  •  9 months ago  •  20 comments

By:   Fareed Zakaria (Washington Post)

 On immigration, Democrats should admit they are wrong - The Washington Post
Voters aren't going to forgive the Democrats for the current mess unless they show they can change.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


By Fareed Zakaria Columnist September 15, 2023 at 8:06 a.m. 


The Democrats are confronting a crisis that could cripple their chances at the polls at the national, state and local level. I'm talking about immigration. It's happening not only because Republicans are taking advantage of the problem but also because Democrats are unwilling to accept that their policy ideas on the issue are wrong and grossly inadequate to the challenge at hand.

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Apprehensions at the southern border are surging again. Texas border towns have long been inundated by the waves of arrivals, but now that migrants are being bused into cities such as New York, Chicago and D.C., local governments there are facing backbreaking expenses to house them. New York Mayor Eric Adams (D) was exaggerating only slightly when he said the problem would "destroy" the city.

The Biden administration's various efforts have amounted to Band-Aids on a massive, open wound. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has said repeatedly that the asylum system is broken. But if that's true, we need a drastic, dramatic overhaul of the system, and neither he nor President Biden is proposing anything like that.

To understand how to think of this issue, let's go back to basics. After World War II, the United States developed pathways for people who faced extreme persecution because of their race, religion or beliefs to take refuge in America.

But there are two realities that are critical to turning this idealistic impulse into a workable system. First, there are surely tens of millions of people around the world who could plausibly claim that they face persecution, and the United States cannot possibly take them all in. More important, the United States cannot be forced to give priority to people who break the law and enter the country illegally — and then claim asylum status to legitimize their entry — as opposed to those who follow the rules, apply from their home countries and wait their turn. But that is what is happening every day at the southern border.

Second, these asylum cases must be special and distinct from the cases of people from all over the world who are trying to immigrate to the United States because they are fleeing poverty, disease or violence. People who fall into this category face a complex and elaborate process that entails several mechanisms for obtaining various kinds of visas and work permits, some of which can eventually translate into a green card and eventually citizenship.

But instead of going through that arduous, lengthy process, many seem to have decided that it would be simpler to pay cartels to help them cross the border illegally, present themselves as asylum seekers, and slip into the country while their cases are being adjudicated. In a 17-month period between March 2021 and August 2022, the federal government released more than 1 million migrants into the United States and lost track of over 177,000 of themwho had failed to give an address or had provided an invalid one. When the system of due process collapses, as it has, it is most unfair to those who have legitimate claims to asylum or legal immigrant status.

There is only one solution to this crisis, as Nolan Rappaport, a longtime congressional expert on the issue, has suggested: The president must use the power he has in existing law to suspend entirely the admission of asylum seekers while the system digests the millions of immigration cases already pending. The British government has passed a law to this effect.

Other Western countries will undoubtedly follow. The world has changed. There are more than 40 million refugees and asylum seekers globally. We need new laws, standards, courts and systems so that asylum can be granted through some orderly, rational process — rather than just leaving it up to officials in countries that are overwhelmed by illegal entrants at their borders.

The migrant crisis is exposing Democratic policy weakness at every level, from an administration that is scared to take on its progressive wing and take bold action to states such as New York and Massachusetts, which have "right to shelter" rules that are utterly unworkable in the face of this onslaught. Unless Democrats seize control of the issue, the politics of it will end up having the same effect as in other Western countries — rocket fuel for the populist right.

Donald Trump's main solution to this problem didn't work. The very fact that we have had millions of migrants entering the country over the past few years proved that, however much of his wall he actually built, it hasn't worked. But most Americans know that he sees the current situation as utterly unacceptable and is willing to take extreme measures to end it. They know no such thing about his Democratic opponents.


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Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Vic Eldred    9 months ago

The election is upon us and even those who favor open borders know what a political liability this is.

We can expect Biden's handlers to try to fix the optics of this.

 
 
 
cjcold
Professor Quiet
1.1  cjcold  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    9 months ago

Who the hell else is going to pick the crops?

Pretty sure it won't be lazy white folk.

 
 
 
arkpdx
Professor Quiet
1.1.1  arkpdx  replied to  cjcold @1.1    9 months ago

We don't need millions to pick crops. According to the department of labor less than one millionaire n is sufficient 

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
1.1.2  Texan1211  replied to  cjcold @1.1    9 months ago
Who the hell else is going to pick the crops?

There are migrants who come here legally just to pick crops, and some of them do it every year.

BTW, that does seem like the sorriest excuse for the Biden Administration's extreme fuck up.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Expert
1.1.3  Nerm_L  replied to  cjcold @1.1    9 months ago
Who the hell else is going to pick the crops?

John Deere.

 
 
 
bbl-1
Professor Quiet
2  bbl-1    9 months ago

Maybe the right wing fears immigration because those desiring to come here may be better people than the MAGA base and have a better understanding of what freedom, security and opportunity are.  MAGA just wants you to be afraid of everybody and everything while at the same time immigrant workers can be treated like crap and live in a state of fear all the time as BIG AGRA makes obscene profits.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
2.1  Sean Treacy  replied to  bbl-1 @2    9 months ago
t wing fears immigration because those desiring to come here may be better people than the MAGA base and have a better understanding of what freedom, security and opportunity are.

Lol.  Tell Eric Adams and every other democratic mayor who's having hysterics over a handful of illegals. 

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
2.2  Ronin2  replied to  bbl-1 @2    9 months ago

No one has a problem with legal immigration. Which Democrats and leftists can't seem to comprehend.

Uncontrolled illegal immigration is breaking this country economically; socially; and structurally. It is a strain we cannot handle.

Ask the mayors of New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and other Democrat bastions of stupidity about the costs and strain illegal immigrants are putting on their systems.

Brandon and the Democrats have a wide open border; their "let them all in" policy is directly to blame. It will not be corrected until they are removed from power.

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Principal
2.2.1  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Ronin2 @2.2    9 months ago
Ask the mayors of New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and other Democrat bastions of stupidity about the costs and strain illegal immigrants are putting on their systems.

It needs to be noted that New York, Chicago, LA and the other Democrat run shitholes are only seeing a very small portion of the illegals border states are dealing wtih.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
2.2.2  Sean Treacy  replied to  Jeremy Retired in NC @2.2.1    9 months ago
ew York, Chicago, LA and the other Democrat run shitholes are only seeing a very small portion of the illegals border states are dealing wtih.

They are doing what Democrats do best though, giving millions of taxpayer dollars to special interest groups that support them. 

Invoices obtained by NBC 5 Investigates show some staffers caring for migrants earn more than $135 an hour

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
2.3  Texan1211  replied to  bbl-1 @2    9 months ago
Maybe the right wing fears immigration because those desiring to come here may be better people than the MAGA base and have a better understanding of what freedom, security and opportunity are.

Maybe the left wing just doesn't get it.

We don't fear legal immigration at all.

Come legally and be welcomed by right wingers.

Come illegally and be welcomed by left wingers.

 
 
 
arkpdx
Professor Quiet
2.3.1  arkpdx  replied to  Texan1211 @2.3    9 months ago
We don't fear legal immigration at all.

Come legally and be welcomed by right wingers.

jrSmiley_13_smiley_image.gif jrSmiley_81_smiley_image.gif jrSmiley_43_smiley_image.gif jrSmiley_15_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2.4  Tessylo  replied to  bbl-1 @2    9 months ago

No doubt that they're better people than the maga base.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
3  Sean Treacy    9 months ago

Bill Clinton would have pivoted on this so quick as soon as he saw the polling numbers.  

But that's why Clinton was popular and Biden is not. Biden just does whatever his loony left handlers tell him to.  He's a prisoner of far left special interests who demand open borders. 

 
 
 
mocowgirl
Professor Quiet
3.1  mocowgirl  replied to  Sean Treacy @3    9 months ago
Bill Clinton would have pivoted on this so quick as soon as he saw the polling numbers.  

Because he took in Cuban refugees and lost the next election for governor of Arkansas.

Below is a link to a lot of information about Clinton's 1996 Immigration Reform Act.  Obama used this legislation to deport tens of thousands of illegal immigrants in 2009.  

The disastrous, forgotten 1996 law that created today's immigration problem - Vox

The disastrous, forgotten 1996 law that created today's immigration problem

The immigration reform Hillary Clinton wants could be limited — or even undermined — by a law her husband signed.

By   Dara Lind dara@vox.com     Apr 28, 2016, 8:40am EDT
If Democrats ever find themselves in a position to pass the comprehensive immigration reform, they might find the past law's immigration legacy has been too consequential to ignore.

What '90s immigration reform did: made more people deportable and fewer people legalizable

There was no single provision of the 1996 law that was as dramatic as the 1986 "amnesty" law, signed by President Reagan, which is why he gets credit for the last major immigration reform. But the '96 law essentially invented immigration enforcement as we know it today — where deportation is a constant and plausible threat to millions of immigrants.

It was a bundle of provisions with a single goal: to increase penalties on immigrants who had violated US law in some way (whether they were unauthorized immigrants who'd violated immigration law or legal immigrants who'd committed other crimes).

After '90s immigration reform, the unauthorized population tripled

But even though deportations exploded after the passage of IIRIRA, it didn't keep the population of unauthorized immigrants in the US from growing. It went from 5 million the year IIRIRA was passed to 12 million by 2006. (By contrast, during the decade between the Reagan "amnesty" and IIRIRA, the unauthorized population grew by only 2 million.)

These two things didn't happen despite each other. More immigration enforcement is one big reason   why   there are so many unauthorized immigrants in the US today.

A lot of this is because of the increase of enforcement on the US–Mexico border — something that was happening even without IIRIRA. Many unauthorized immigrants used to shuttle back and forth between jobs in the US and families in Mexico. Once it got harder to cross the border without being caught, they settled in the US — "essentially hunkering down and staying once they had successfully run the gauntlet at the border," as Massey and Pren write — and encouraged their families to settle alongside them.

(This wasn't the only reason unauthorized immigrants started settling in the US around this time. The types of jobs available for unauthorized workers were changing, with seasonal agricultural jobs being replaced by year-round service-industry ones, for one thing. But it was certainly a major factor.)

But if border enforcement encouraged families to stay, IIRIRA prevented them from obtaining legal status. By this point, a majority of the unauthorized-immigrant population of the US has been here 10 years — more than enough time to qualify for cancellation of removal, if IIRIRA hadn't made it so difficult to get. Millions of them have children who are US citizens.
 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
4  Thrawn 31    9 months ago

You know, I never hear a serious plan on how to handle immigration from any politician, probably because it is an extremely complicated issue with no real right or wrong answers. 

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
4.1  Tessylo  replied to  Thrawn 31 @4    9 months ago

Well you're a better man or woman or person than any of the alleged conservatives here, that's for sure.  They just blame Democrats/and or the Clintons for all the problems we face now.

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
4.1.1  Ronin2  replied to  Tessylo @4.1    9 months ago

Your party ran this country into a ditch; and you expect them to be praised for it?

As Obama said:

You can't have the keys back. You don't know how to drive. You can ride with us if you want, but you got to sit in the backseat. We're going to put middle-class America in the front seat. We're looking out for them.

Have fun in the backseat. Frankly Democrats shouldn't even be let in the damn car.

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
4.2  Ronin2  replied to  Thrawn 31 @4    9 months ago

Brandon has completely the wrong answer to immigration and the border. So there are absolutely wrong answers.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
Professor Expert
4.3  Nerm_L  replied to  Thrawn 31 @4    9 months ago
You know, I never hear a serious plan on how to handle immigration from any politician, probably because it is an extremely complicated issue with no real right or wrong answers. 

What's complicated about the issue?  We either let people enter the country for any reason or we don't.  Politicians and lawyers are trying to turn a simple issue into a complex issue.  And the complexities created by politicians and lawyers are not intended to benefit either migrants or citizens.

 
 

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