If this sounds familiar, it’s because variations of this story pop up every three months or so. Here’s one from October about amnesty shills turning to more “aggressive” pressure tactics in their despair at GOP recalcitrance. Here’s another from December quoting Kevin McCarthy, currently number three in the House GOP leadership, warning immigration reform fans that showing up outside his district office and screaming makes him less likely to listen to them, not more. You make the call (no peeking): Is this passage from today’s Politico story about reform advocates getting tough or from Politico’s story on December 9th about reform advocates getting tough?
They stormed House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-Va.) condo in Arlington, Va. They delivered reams of letters to House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and dozens of other House Republicans from children of immigrant families. They’ve confronted Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) during breakfast at his favorite Capitol Hill diner and prayed on the doorsteps of his suburban Cincinnati home.
But, so far, the in-your-face strategy isn’t working. After the Senate passed the most comprehensive immigration overhaul in a generation in June, the effort has stalled. And the tough tactics are turning off key House GOP lawmakers whose support will be vital if legislation is to clear Congress…
“They are refusing to move on reform; thousands of families every week are broken apart because of the failure to move,” said Kica Matos, a spokeswoman for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement, a coalition behind much of the strategy. “We are determined to see reform passed. So give us reform and we’ll go away.”
That’s from December 9th. Fast forward two months, almost to the day, and here’s Politico again quoting the same spokeswoman in an article co-authored by the same writer who wrote the earlier story. Amnesty activists are mad, and this time they really, really mean it. No fooling, you guys. Super cereal:
A new, more aggressive campaign kicks off Tuesday, when these groups say they will begin confronting Republican lawmakers at public appearances, congressional hearings and events back in home districts. The goal: Shame Republicans in swing districts into taking up the issue — or make them pay at the ballot box in November…
“Obviously, persuasion only got us so far,” Kica Matos, a spokeswoman for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement, said Monday. “What we are now doing is to switch tactics from persuasion to punishment.”
“We will be a thorn in your side, every single day. We will be in your face. Get used to seeing us,” warned Matos for the 18,000th time. It won’t work, especially now that O’s answered Republican criticism about his trustworthiness on enforcement with yet another middle finger from ObamaCare. But these stories are useful, I guess, as pro forma expressions of exasperation from the left to remind the public that they urgently want amnesty. The whiff of violence from the rhetoric — “punishment,” “in your face,” aggressiveness, confrontation — is useful too. Coming from a bunch of conservative groups, that would be cause for a week-long media panic. Coming from a protected group like amnesty shills, it’s just another pressure point. I.e. see how desperate these guys are? Better give them what they want before they really get desperate.
Amnesty super-shill Luis Gutierrez, who once famously said that his only loyalty is to the “immigrant community,” told reporters on a conference call, “You thought the Super Bowl was a blow out? Wait until November 2016 if immigration reform is still hanging out there.” Is that right? Sean Trende, RCP’s ace elections analyst, doesn’t buy it:
Let’s steadily increase the Democrats’ share of the Hispanic vote across the board from 2012, leaving everything else untouched. At 78 percent nationally, North Carolina flips. It isn’t until 86 percent that Arizona flips. At 98 percent nationally, Texas finally flips.
But what about the upside for the GOP? If the GOP reduces the Democrats’ share of the Hispanic vote to 67 percent, Florida goes Republican. At 56 percent, New Mexico flips. Nevada and Colorado flip at 51 percent and 50 percent, respectively. Incidentally, Mitt Romney is still losing the Electoral College, 283 to 255. It isn’t until the Republicans win 63 percent of the Hispanic vote that Pennsylvania finally flips, handing Romney the presidency.
There are very good reasons to pursue the Hispanic vote from both moral and policy perspectives, and of course every vote does help. But from a cold electoral calculus, the Democrats’ gains among Hispanics at this point yield very little fruit. In fact, if the Democrats were to increase their vote share among Hispanics somehow by another 10 percent, Republicans could nevertheless win the presidency by increasing their share among whites by just four points.
What everyone misses in the great demographics debate, says Trende, is that while Democrats are benefiting from an electorate with more minority voters, Republicans have been trending towards winning greater and greater shares of the white vote. And since there are still many more white voters than Latino ones, it’s not true that the GOP’s best move is to pursue Latinos with targeted policies if those same policies cost them votes among whites. The party ideally would run on a platform that appeals to both; amnesty is … probably not part of such a platform. But either way, Gutierrez is kidding himself if he thinks stalling on immigration reform is going to produce some sort of landslide defeat for Republicans in 2016. On the contrary, if the “Obama coalition” doesn’t hold for the next Democratic nominee, the left is in trouble.