Biden’s balancing act between the progressives and the oligarchy seems likely to force him to adopt positions that may not play well with some traditional party constituencies. The loosening of border restrictions may appeal to the two contending factions but has become such a disaster — including the recent incidents with Haitians at the Texas border — that even the head of DHS admits it is “unsustainable,” with many new immigrants, including as much as one in three migrant children, having disappeared somewhere in the country. Allowing a largely unregulated flow may provide dutiful new wards of the emerging welfare state and cheap labor for upper-class progressives, but opinion surveys show disapproval among most voters.
Nor does a “liberal” immigration policy, as some may think, necessarily appeal to Hispanics. Hundreds of thousands of migrants have flooded into many heavily Latino border areas and working-class towns deeper into the interior. These communities, not the Upper East Side, Georgetown, or Palo Alto, have to bear the brunt of functionally “open borders.” The result: a growing shift of Latino voters to the GOP, particularly in heavily Hispanic and traditionally Democratic south Texas, and in other areas like Florida.
This is just one example of how embracing the progressives’ woke agenda — supported by roughly 8 percent of the population — undermines the party’s historic base. Asian-Americans, the primary targets of academic quotas and often urban violence, have broken with Democrats on issues like affirmative action. Last year Trump, despite his crude thoughtlessness, won a significantly larger Latino vote than in 2016, as well as making surprising gains among African-Americans, Muslims, Jews, and Asians. Even in California, as many as half of Latinos for a time suggested they planned to support the recall of Gavin Newsom, although they ended up supporting him but by a considerably smaller margin than in the 2018 election.