Live-blogging Bush's immigration speech
Is he insane? This is the same speech he's delivered countless times. Does he expect a different result? Is he intentionally trying to drive his popularity down to 20%?
For decades, the United States has not been in complete control of its borders... First, the United States must secure its borders. This is a basic responsibility of a sovereign Nation.
Bush has had over five years to secure the border, and it's been well within his ability all that time. It's a matter of will and nothing more. In this speech, he's admitted that he's violated his oath of office.
We are a Nation of laws, and we must enforce our laws. We are also a Nation of immigrants, and we must uphold that tradition, which has strengthened our country in so many ways. These are not contradictory goals – America can be a lawful society and a welcoming society at the same time.
Yes, that's why we have an immigration system, complete with a set of laws that the Bush administration refuses to enforce.
And temporary workers must return to their home country at the conclusion of their stay.
How exactly is Bush going to do that? If he almost completely refuses to deport people other than at the border now, is he - or President Clinton - going to do that? And, of course, our "temporary" workers/"guests" will have U.S. citizen children, they'll buy property, and so forth. Isn't it going to be extremely difficult to deport someone who has U.S. citizen children? In fact, another argument used in his speech could be used by Bush or others to keep those "guest" workers here:
That middle ground recognizes that there are differences between an illegal immigrant who crossed the border recently – and someone who has worked here for many years, and has a home, a family, and an otherwise clean record.
In other words, there's a deep conflict within the same speech.
There is a rational middle ground between granting an automatic path to citizenship for every illegal immigrant, and a program of mass deportation.
Obviously, that's a false choice, and the rational middle ground is not amnesty. It's simply enforcing our laws.
The absolute idiots at the WaPo offer "On Immigration, Bush Seeks 'Middle Ground'". They do not explain that that "middle ground" is based on the false choice described above.
On a lighter note, here's a fun game of mix and match:
1. "A Very Good Start --Finally."
2. "Shut up whiners"
3. "...his plan is the right plan in all respects..."
4. "If you think that is amnesty, then you are either a moron or a liar. If you ar truly a Republican to begin with, if you are truly a conservative, then you will applaud this speech and support the reforms he has articulated. Otherwise, you are not a Republican. You are not a conservative. You are a LIAR. A LIAR"
A. Hugh Hewitt
C. BlogsForBush (Mark Noonan)
D. The unhinged BushBot Alexander K. McClure at Polipundit
Answer: 1A, 2B, 3C, 4D
Bush doesn't really have a complete plan, just outlines. But he has spoken favorably of the Senate plan. Now, see Senate Bill Would Allow 100 Million New Legal Immigrants Over Next 20 Years.
If you don't want that, contact your senators.
UPDATE: Hugh Hewitt momentarily puts a finger outside the reservation for a millisecond:
My interview with Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security Julie Myers staggered me, undoing in a handful of minutes my confidence in the president's commitment to border security first. Either the president's team had not communicated effectively with sub-cabinet appointees about the fence, or the president doesn't really believe in the fence, because Assistant Secretary Myers is clearly not a proponent of the fence.
UPDATE 2: See also "Did these ploys sneak into Bush's speech?" That was written before the speech.