Jeb Bush: I’m going to try to persuade Republican voters to back immigration reform

posted at 7:21 pm on December 17, 2014 by Allahpundit

The key bit comes at 1:20. BuzzFeed headlines this clip, “Jeb Bush Thinks He Can Persuade The Republican Base To Get Behind Immigration Legislation.” Is that what Bush said?

“A candidate gets to persuade,” Bush said to Miami’s NBC 6. “I think there’s a compelling case that if we want to be young and dynamic again, we have to make legal immigration easier than illegal immigration, that we control our borders, enforce the laws. But that we embrace our immigrant heritage and allow our country to take off. You gotta do both.”

“You gotta protect the borders, enforce the law, be respectful of the rule of law, and at the same time be able to encourage young aspirational people to come to our county,” Bush said. “It’s a win-win. I have no problems advancing that idea.”

Asked about it’s deep unpopularity again with the party base, Bush added “well we’ll see. If I run, we’ll see.”

It’s the reporter who mentions the base, i.e. conservatives. Bush is less specific, for good reason: His core strategy, I thought, was to accept that he can’t persuade conservatives and therefore shouldn’t try. The more you bend over backwards in the primaries to please them, a la Mitt Romney and “self-deportation,” the more trouble you’ll have maneuvering to the center in the general election. That’s what Bush’s weird “lose the primary to win the general” comment to fundraisers was about last week. (Then again, Romney didn’t pander on his core liability, RomneyCare. Some reversals, like Jeb turning hawkish on immigration, might seem too transparently opportunistic to voters to produce real benefits.) What he’s saying here, as I understand it, is that he’s going to try to convince his own particular base of centrists and “somewhat conservative” voters that they should embrace immigration reform — which isn’t a heavy lift, really. Lots of Republicans seem open to a deal on amnesty, just not the sort you’ll find on talk radio or writing for most conservative media. The trick for Bush isn’t convincing RINOs to back comprehensive legislation, it’s convincing them to back him to the hilt at the polls when, not if, the winner of the conservative mini-primary begins framing the nomination as a referendum on amnesty. Lots of tea partiers will turn out to try to beat Jeb if those are the stakes. Will centrists turn out in equal numbers to save him, especially with Obama’s executive order having further fouled the subject among GOPers?

Oh, speaking of Jeb drawing sharp contrasts with Romney, this tidbit from the NYT’s story today about his campaign launch is fun:

Further, the possibility of a third campaign by Mitt Romney, the Republicans’ 2012 standard-bearer, now seems less likely.  Some party elites were eying a Romney revival in large part because they were seeking a candidate formidable enough to take on former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.  Tension between supporters of the two Republicans have been rising, and at least one Romney adviser has expressed irritation to Mr. Bush’s backers about some of the former Florida governor’s recent criticism of Mr. Romney’s 2012 campaign.

Remember that when Mitt shocks the world and blows up Jeb’s campaign by jumping in next year. Romney III: This time it’s personal.

Exit question: Will anyone else competing for the centrist vote decide to try to persuade “somewhat conservative” voters to back amnesty? Most if not all of them, right? Christie will surely endorse a deal; I’ll be surprised if Walker doesn’t too; and Rubio already voted for a deal before trying desperately to run away from it. I’ve made this point before — as much as we’d like to think that the candidates’ stances on immigration will guide our preferences, the hard truth is that none of them will be very different from the others, with the possible exception of Cruz. And even Cruz isn’t going to take a Romneyesque “self-deportation” position; he might insist on a “security first” bill with legalization later but no path to citizenship, neglecting the fact that citizenship will inevitably follow for illegals once legalization is granted. The other candidates will be variations in degree, not in kind. E.g., Jeb might accept “security first” but endorse citizenship so long as there’s a long ripening period. Rand Paul might accept a comprehensive deal but with a long waiting period even for legalization. Rubio, eager to rehabilitate himself, will probably end up taking whatever position Cruz takes, knowing that moderates will reward him for his efforts on the Gang of Eight anyway. And if Romney jumps in, rest assured he’ll be firmly in the amnesty camp this time, the “self-deportation” stuff from 2012 notwithstanding. Republicans fear alienating Latino voters more than they already have. There’ll be no strong exceptions to that rule this time, or likely ever again.


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None of them would be facing Obama this time around. Each would be on a more familiar footing.

Of the three, Romney is still the most palatable of the three.

That being said, it is my profound hope that the GOP will choose a different nominee than any of these three men. One who places the interest of the American citizens, the rule of law, and the preservation and enforcement of the constitution before all other considerations and interests.

thatsafactjack on December 17, 2014 at 7:50 PM

It is, indeed, a whole different ball game.
I like Romney as a person — he is an authentically good man — but I do think he would govern more from the Progressive side than I like, because of the same charitable (but naïve) impulses shown by Dubya and Perry, and others.

We need tough love, not platitudes.

Frankly, I would vote for Mike Lee to actually run the government, with Cruz, Romney and others in the Cabinet under his direction.

AesopFan on December 17, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Cool story, Jeb. We’re going to try to “persuade” you into a 7th place finish in IA, and 4th in New Hampshire.

(Ratso?)

Gingotts on December 17, 2014 at 9:52 PM

“The other candidates will be variations in degree, not in kind.

Republicans fear alienating Latino voters more than they already have. There’ll be no strong exceptions to that rule this time, or likely ever again.”

-Allahpundit

No, this is a golden opportunity for a sincere candidate to seize on this issue and run on, among other things, total opposition to any form of illegal alien amnesty.

bluegill on December 17, 2014 at 7:54 PM

I think AP is right (prognostication-wise) but I agree with you in principle.

PS — it is possible to reform our immigration system without amnesty, but somebody has to put some markers on the table describing how.

AesopFan on December 17, 2014 at 9:53 PM

Cool story, Jeb. We’re going to try to “persuade” you into a 7th place finish in IA, and 4th in New Hampshire.

(Ratso?)

Gingotts on December 17, 2014 at 9:52 PM

He will suspend his campaign before Iowa.

terryannonline on December 17, 2014 at 9:55 PM

Surprise, surprise; Census Bureau data reveals that most U.S. families headed by illegal immigrants use taxpayer-funded welfare programs on behalf of their American-born anchor babies.Even before the recession, immigrant households with children used welfare programs at consistently higher rates than natives, according to the extensive census data collected and analyzed by a nonpartisan Washington D.C. group dedicated to researching legal and illegal immigration in the U.S. The results, published this month in a lengthy report, are hardly surprising. Basically, the majority of households across the country benefitting from publicly-funded welfare programs are headed by immigrants, both legal and illegal.
bluegill on December 17, 2014 at 7:58 PM

This is why immigration now is not the same as immigration in “the good ol’ days” when there was no welfare and all immigrants worked for their keep – and many got ahead in spectacular fashion.

I would tie all welfare to immigrant-based families to the foreign aid allocated to their home countries — they can have it here, or there, but not both.

And I would reduce the aid going into the pockets of the foreign governments, if not (preferably) totally dispense with it.

AesopFan on December 17, 2014 at 9:58 PM

Jeb, might want to peruse Ace of Spades….I agree with Ace. You don’t change people’s minds as a candidate. That is if the Public is NOT in favour of a policy, no matter how eloquent you are, you aren’t going to change their minds on a topic, & it’s the height of arrogance or foolishness to believe otherwise. Thru TIME, people’s opinions may change, but you, in an election cycle weren’t going to do it. People will vote differently when they are undecided or the current paradigm seems to be failing, e.g. Reagan & Carter. So, if Jeb thinks he’s going to convince the “Base” that Amnesty is good, he’s barking up the wrong tree. I see why he’s the one who was “supposed to run for President” rather than the one who did…because the one who did, wasn’t as arrogant.

JFKY on December 17, 2014 at 8:18 PM

Jeb may be hoping that the center-mass of registered Republicans is just waiting for someone to tell them what policy they should be in favor of — works for the Dems.

AesopFan on December 17, 2014 at 10:01 PM

Jeb Bush: I’m going to try to persuade Republican voters to back immigration reform.

I don’t remember that working out too well for Rubio when he tried to bullsh*t persuade GOP voters.

But go right ahead.

lynncgb on December 17, 2014 at 10:18 PM

Paul [Ryan] is right – and this speech is a hopeful indication of his future direction.
People will snipe at him – the Amnesty freaks will freak – etc.
He is possibly the next Chairman of Ways and Means – this is good.
jake-the-goose on March 17, 2014 at 6:17 PM

Jake – What I like best about Ryan is his financial reform recommendations with a balanced budget by 2040 (if all the stars align) followed by his spectacular performance on the campaign trail in 2012, lol!

bw222 on December 17, 2014 at 10:42 PM

It’s much more likely the Bush’s of the Republican party are going to persuade their base to vote third party or not at all. If Boehner and McConnell haven’t already done it.

bluesdoc70 on December 17, 2014 at 10:44 PM

… which is why the Number One Favorite Name in Britain is now Mohammed.
So, which “sane” countries did you have in mind??

I have absolutely no idea what point you were trying to make, I think it’s pretty clear that I am in favor of restricting immigration, legal and illegal and would not support the UKs disastrous policies which led to the rise of UKIP.

Redstone on December 17, 2014 at 10:50 PM

Jeb Bush looks like the worlds fattest tampon.

He can talk, and lie, all day long and I wont listen to a word. I know what he is and am already resolved to dismiss him if he makes it to the final ballot.

Bush: No way all day.

Andy__B on December 17, 2014 at 11:29 PM

I have heard that 3-4 million voters did not show up to vote for Romney that had voted for McCain. Jeb must have seen a challenge in that and decided to shoot for 10 million no-shows.

KCsecurity1976 on December 18, 2014 at 12:03 AM

Get frucked, all you traitors.

Schadenfreude on December 18, 2014 at 1:16 AM

Lots of Republicans seem open to a deal on amnesty, just not the sort you’ll find on talk radio or writing for most conservative media.

Oh, BS, AP. COMPLETE BS! Polls from the slanted Wash Post and crony organizations NEVER offer attrition as a choice!

READ THIS POLL, AP, and see what 40% of Hispanics, 50% of Democrats, 62% of Republicans, 66% of conservatives,60% of independents, and 63% of blacks want — attrition through law enforcement — not amnesty!

http://www.jmisys.com/immigrationmarches/zogby5.html

Do not publish any poll without publishing the questions!!

Every poll article that talks about “anti-immigration” instead of “anti-ILLEGAL immigration is obviously slanted, and offers the false dichotomy of 4 flavors of amnesty versus mass deportation, ignoring the most popular choice.

And by the way, FU Jeb!

fred5678 on December 18, 2014 at 2:15 AM

Oh, BS, AP. COMPLETE BS! Polls from the slanted Wash Post and crony organizations NEVER offer attrition as a choice!
READ THIS POLL, AP, and see what 40% of Hispanics, 50% of Democrats, 62% of Republicans, 66% of conservatives,60% of independents, and 63% of blacks want — attrition through law enforcement — not amnesty!
http://www.jmisys.com/immigrationmarches/zogby5.html

Do not publish any poll without publishing the questions!!
Every poll article that talks about “anti-immigration” instead of “anti-ILLEGAL immigration is obviously slanted, and offers the false dichotomy of 4 flavors of amnesty versus mass deportation, ignoring the most popular choice.
And by the way, FU Jeb!
fred5678 on December 18, 2014 at 2:15 AM

You are totally right.

bluegill on December 18, 2014 at 3:26 AM

I love that he keeps using the word reform as if anyone is against reform.

You know… that’s it… this dude is slim.

The term “reform” is misleading because what he really means is amnesty… not reform.

Karmashock on December 18, 2014 at 3:47 AM

This is why immigration now is not the same as immigration in “the good ol’ days” when there was no welfare and all immigrants worked for their keep – and many got ahead in spectacular fashion.

AesopFan on December 17, 2014 at 9:58 PM

I totally agree. We are a nation of immigrants. The problem with immigration is not that we are attracting immigrants, which has always been the case, but that we are attracting a new underclass of welfare recipients.

The Bringer on December 18, 2014 at 3:49 AM

You know… that’s it… this dude is slim.
The term “reform” is misleading because what he really means is amnesty… not reform.
Karmashock on December 18, 2014 at 3:47 AM

This is what they do.

It is framed this way: pro-reform side VS. anti-immigrant side.

Then there’s a poll result… “Oh, wow, the public wants immigration reform, so we better pass some form of amnesty ASAP.”

And then they run deceitful ads like this (see below). This ad is paid for by Mark Zuckerberg’s pro-amnesty group and it is touting the Rubio amnesty sellout plan. But notice how they are trying to appeal to people who oppose illegal alien amnesty:
VIDEO: http://youtu.be/l9XRF_kqIN4

bluegill on December 18, 2014 at 4:21 AM

If the Bush-kennedy bill had passed several years ago we would still be six years away from the first people becoming citizens after 13th year wait. Vitter and the unions aligned in a weird bi-partisan way to kill the bill.
Cry all you want about amnesty but most of the “anti” crowd will change its tune the closer they get to social security eligibility and desperately need more taxpayers to ensure that entitlement. The rationalizations will make for great humor. As Hot air posters you will continue to bemoan amnesty but like a drug addict getting his next hit you will take your monthly check knowing your virtual friends can’t see you.

Bradky on December 18, 2014 at 6:05 AM

Don’t let anyone tell us that there is a strong desire out there among voters for illegal alien amnesty or that immigration law enforcement is merely a concern of the conservative “base.”

That’s why pro-amnesty supporters like Jeb Bush and Obama allies have to lie to voters, hide their true intentions

–bluegill

Correct!

Lourdes on December 18, 2014 at 7:38 AM

Asked about it’s deep unpopularity again with the party base, Bush added “well we’ll see. If I run, we’ll see.”

He’s either clueless or he’s threatening the voters: “he’s too well funded not to take the Office”.

…which is called “buying the Presidency” and, well, in that case, so long what shred of democracy the USA has left, welcome another dictator.

Lourdes on December 18, 2014 at 7:41 AM

After chatting with Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer a few minutes before, she [Martinez] said that Arizona’s restrictive immigration law is not the type she would implement in her state.

“And it can be tackled without using the word amnesty,” she said. “People can be in this country legally and contributing, and they can come here to do all kinds of jobs, not just jobs Americans don’t want, all kinds of jobs, get educated, the whole nine yards, but be here legally. And there’s a variety of ways of receiving that kind of status.”

And Martinez is yet another fool.

WHEN did the GOP get so full of fools such as that and Jeb Bush and on and on and on and on, the list goes.

We’ve now got the Communist Party (Democrats today) and we’ve got the Socialists Progressives (posing as Republicans).

Hillary or Warren or Jeb Bush equals not a lot of variation on the Leftwing-themes: all Leftwing.

If Jeb Bush has a shred of decency in him, he’ll stop threatening to run for the Presidency. Or come clean and declare he’s a Democrat candidate.

Lourdes on December 18, 2014 at 7:46 AM

nd while you’re at it, try persuading voters to back higher taxes.

Didn’t quite work out for Daddy Shrub, but hey — if there’s one thing Jeb Bush has, it’s charisma!

Jedditelol on December 17, 2014 at 7:49 PM

Don’t forget, he’s bilingual. Woo

Key West Reader on December 17, 2014 at 7:54 PM

And his wife is from Mexico. And his daughter writes her own prescriptions, no license, no prob. And his son has been photographed rallying in Spanish with his fist in the air (the “Brown Power Pump”).

If the GOP wants to throw the USA away out of a “need to please Hispanic voters,” well, you know, they don’t value the votes of the rest of us and there’s no reason to throw a vote away on a party that doesn’t value yer vote.

Never did I think the GOP would be as treacherous as this. Now they’re Democrats.

Lourdes on December 18, 2014 at 7:56 AM

All Jeb Bush can accomplish is persuading Republicans to go Third Party and electing Hillary.

WannabeAnglican on December 18, 2014 at 8:26 AM

Yes, DO teach us the correct thoughts, Lord Bush.
Country club Republican d@@chebag.

Please, Rand Paul or SOMEone, elbow this buffoon aside.

orangemtl on December 18, 2014 at 8:32 AM

Time for a new slogan, borrowed from the Democrats and tweaked:

We can’t drill amnesty our way to prosperity.

fossten on December 18, 2014 at 8:36 AM

Asked about it’s deep unpopularity again with the party base, Bush added “well we’ll see. If I run, we’ll see.”

Newsflash Jeb, opposition to amnesty extends far beyond the GOP base. If he sticks with this stupidity he won’t make it through the primary.

Stop listening to the consultants and the Chamber of Commerce and consider what likely voters think. Pro-amnesty is a loser on all fronts.

This man will NOT be the next GOP candidate.

Archer on December 18, 2014 at 8:48 AM

Jeb Bush: I’m going to try to persuade Republican voters to back immigration reform

…and America will tell YOU the SAME thing we just told Obama, Liberals, and Boehner in this last election (not that you will listen anymore than they did…): “F* YOU!”

WHAT are you ignorant, elitist, mouth-breathing politicians NOT getting?! You want us to accept ILLEGAL Immigration Reform? HERE is the REFORM the American People want / wil laccept:

1. CLOSE / SECURE THE BORDERS IMMEDIATELY!
– The perpetual / continuous promise to do so is a freaking LIE, a carrot at the end of a string on a pole dangled in fron of the American people to keep them agreeing to Amnesty over and over. We have illegals who have no respect for our country, terrorists threatening another 9/11 and coming across, Drug Cartels, Human Traffickers, 5 Million + approx 1,200 a DAY (according to Texas) coming across the Border to compete with out-of-work Americans for work…and you F*ers STILL refuse to secure the [email protected] border! Politicians’ attitude toward the border is like a man in a boat with a hole in it out on the lake and refusing to fix the hole in the boat until he bails all the water out — until you fix the hole/stop the leak you’ll never stop all the water from coming in! Dumbm@$$e$!

2. ENFORCE EVERY EXISTING IMMIGRATION LAW!
– Aside from having a completely OPN BORDER, the other problem has been Obama’s refusal to enforce all the existing laws.
— When Obama 1st came into office Wal Mart was in the middle of a huge law suit for hiring illegals…and they ended up paying millions. That was the LAST such case ever since, as the E-Verify and determination to enforce the law that states Illegals can NOT work here was seen or heard of again. Americans do not have to deport a single Illegal – al lit has to do is enforce the law! No Jobs mean no way to live/support a family and thus they all GO HOME on their own.
— Obama ordered the DOJ NOT to detain, arrest, charge, jail, or deport ANY Illegal for perpetrating a crime against an American/in America unless it is a Felony or above. This is a ‘Illegals-Only right’ Obama created, one Americans do not have. He has also released convicted violent offenders into communities without telling local/state officials. Obama has also had the US government facilitate/PARTICIPATE in Human Trafficking by shipping illegals ll over the country, into communities without ingorming local/state agencies, and even still continues to defy court orders to provide information on where it has taken and released all those illegal kids that came/he helped come across our borders!

3. NO RIGHT TO EVER VOTE IN A US ELECTION
– Politicians keep giving us this B$ about how Amnesty is about ‘a better life for these poor people’, who have completely disregarded our laws and have no respect for this country. Politicians already want to reward them with out jobs, with out tax-payer-funded benefits/programs, but there is NO WAY – after breaking our laws – that they should EVER be ‘rewarded’ with the right to vote in any US election! They rejected our laws, showed they have no interest in participating as LEGAL, LAW-ABIDING citizens, that they’re just here for the money, so they should not be allowed to participate in our election process. You KNOW the politicians – especially Liberals, would go ape-shi’ite over this, screaming, “Not just NO but [email protected] no’ BECAUSE AMNESTY IS ALL ABOUT SECURING MORE PARTY VOYES FOR THEM! If Amnesty comes with NEVER being allowed to vote…unless they go back home and come to the US through the legal process…along with these other things – then you have a deal.

But if YOUR )or any other politician’s)message is, “Hey Ya’ll, let’s help these poor ILLEGALS before we help any more Americans” you can go P!$$ off!

easyt65 on December 18, 2014 at 9:15 AM

“A candidate gets to persuade,” Bush said

Not gonna happen. Few voters will be ‘persueded’, many will be alienated.

You’ve already stuck your head into the amnesty noose. Stay pro-amnesty and you’ll lose the primary. Pull a flip-flop on the issue and you’ll lose the primary.

It’s already too late.

Archer on December 18, 2014 at 9:20 AM

I assume, for the sake of argument, that these republicans don’t actually believe that they will acquire new Hispanic voters through an amnesty – which would be delusional – but instead fear that if they don’t give some form of amnesty and/or get tough on border security the GOP will lose some of the Hispanic voters they currently get.

I think this fear is also wrong. Hispanics who currently voter GOP know the GOP base is strongly against amnesty and still vote GOP. They know that the GOP is not an identity politics party and doesn’t generally pass out racial spoils like the DNC, yet they still vote GOP. I don’t see these Hispanic voters as being turned off by being against amnesty and for enforcement.

Sure, maybe some will be. But not in the numbers that the GOP will lose among conservative voters if the GOP goes forward with amnesty.

I think the GOP’s calculation is that it can pass amnesty, and conservatives will – as they always have in the past – forgive the GOP and continue to vote GOP. So, in their minds, they just have to push it through and then we’ll forget about it.

Note that nowhere in these considerations does any candidate or GOP operative think about what is good for the country. Whether amnesty is good or bad for the country is wholly irrelevant to these people. They only care about it as a political issue. That is the most disturbing thing about it.

If they actually believed it would be good for the country and put forth a coherent argument in that regard, I might at least respect them. But they don’t even try to do that. They talk nonsense about “coming out of the shadows” or “act of love” or other platitudes. they never put forth any argument showing how amnesty would be a net benefit to the USA (because, of course, they cannot. Amnesty would be a serious net detriment to the USA).

For the most part, these people all sicken me.

Monkeytoe on December 18, 2014 at 9:33 AM

Good luck with that Jeb. Most Americans believe the immigration process is broken and want it fixed. Most Americans believe the first step towards resolution of the issue is securing the border.

Without a secure border the problem will continue and this will be an issue again in the near future. Most Americans believe those that jump the legal immigration line should not be rewarded. They’re first act when coming to this country is to break the law doesn’t set a good precedent.

Most Americans also believe whatever deal that would be struck would simply be ignored by this president. I have no confidence in the government following the law, especially this lawless president.

Of course the crony capitalists (and Jeb’s on of them) love legalization because it will drive down wages of American jobs and increase profits.

generouse on December 18, 2014 at 9:54 AM

I will gouge out my right testicle with a plastic spork before I vote for Jeb Bush.

fretlesst on December 18, 2014 at 10:13 AM

Dear Jerk Jeb: What and why reform when we already have laws on the books for LEGAL immigration. So why the need for allowing illegals aliens to invade our land, our culture, our language, our schools, our legislatures. Let them stay in their home countries and make changes as did our forefathers! Let them apply for legal immigration like so many who have been waiting for years for no good reasons! In other words, Jeb, you ain’t got what it takes to run an ice cream shop let alone America. We have a bad empty suit now and don’t need another in our White House. We have millions without work or working for pittances to merely survive. We have millions who are enjoying a great lifestyle on OUR tax money because of Obama and the dole. We do not need communism nor stupidity again in the WH! Stay home and don’t run just as your mama told you because in this case mother knows best. You are not wanted and we will fight tooth and nail to keep you and other hogs out of the WH and Congress. We, the People are the government and we are going for a big, big change!

Roselle on December 18, 2014 at 10:52 AM

Jeb, maybe you could inform us as a Democrat, just tossing that out there.

rgranger on December 18, 2014 at 11:24 AM

After announcing “I’m in!” he seems to have found the exit door very quickly.

virgo on December 18, 2014 at 11:32 AM

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