Even if every non-citizen in America were deported, non-Hispanic whites would still only be about 65 percent of the population, versus about 62 percent of the population today, according to the 2012-2016 American Community Survey. In other words, the maximum plausible effect of an extremely aggressive deportation policy is that the minority population shrinks by maybe 2 to 5 percentage points of the whole. Current policies, even carried out to an implausible extreme, never get remotely close to a serious demographic re-writing of America.

If this is ethnic cleansing, then it’s got to be one of the most pitiful and half-hearted ethnic cleansing campaigns ever. Without any policy that actually targets minorities as a class, it’s difficult to argue that the aim is the removal of whole ethnic groups.

Asserting that targeting non-citizens implicitly targets a racial or ethnic group is misguided and a bit insulting since, for example, about 80 percent of Hispanics are U.S. citizens, and some have families who have lived in the American southwest for longer than the United States has even been an independent country. Targeting non-citizens still leaves overwhelming majorities of virtually every racial or ethnic group outside of the targeted class.