Jeb Bush: Heck yeah, I'll use the term "anchor baby"

I admit, after Trump took off I thought the race might devolve into silliness. Imagine how foolish I feel now that this important new debate over whether “anchor baby” is or isn’t offensive has captured the media’s imagination.

Well, lefty media’s imagination, at least. Team Hillary and the rest of the gang are giddy at seeing Bush follow Trump’s lead on this terminology since he’s supposed to be the GOP establishment’s great white hope in winning over Latinos. If either of them ends up as nominee, “anchor baby” will quickly and conveniently join the pantheon of America’s nastiest racial slurs (never mind that the term is race-neutral). If not, not.

The weird thing is, Jeb knew the Democrats would pounce on him for using “anchor baby” as a way to drive a wedge between him and Latinos, so why would he use it? Being pro-illegal is his thing; he’s not going to impress any Trump fans, be they moderate or conservative, by suddenly insisting on using slang typically used by border hawks. He would have been better off avoiding the term and pleasing the immigration-friendly centrists he’s hoping to win over. That’s what Marco Rubio did. Watch the second clip below and you’ll find him sidestepping a question on “anchor babies” by reminding his interviewer that they’re human beings. Rubio’s obviously trying to outflank Bush on the left as a nervous donor class panics about the Trumpification of the field. I can’t understand why Jeb would give him room to do that when Rubio’s the obvious alternative to Bush among establishmentarians who’ll eventually have to consolidate behind an electable “Not Trump” figure.

After you’re done watching the first two clips, watch the quickie third one. I don’t think Jeb meant what he said there as a low blow towards Rubio — he’s actually defending Rubio from the charge of being an “anchor baby” by noting that Rubio’s parents were here legally — but mentioning his immigrant pedigree at a moment when Trump’s soaring thanks to anti-illegal rhetoric is … interesting.

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