by Barbara Anderson
The three Republican candidates for governor have had to declare their positions on illegal immigration. This came about largely by Ron Saxton throwing down the gauntlet in his position against “guest worker” (read amnesty) status being given to the estimated twelve to twenty (Bear Stearns estimate) illegal aliens already in this country. He was on the Lars Larson show and Lars let all three candidates discuss their positions.
It soon became evident that Jason Atkinson had an imperfect idea of what “guest worker” really means. When Lars pointed out that it was, indeed, amnesty, Jason was indignant and said that was not so. Agitated words followed. After that, Atkinson’s campaign manager called in to clarify his candidate’s position. He did no better than Atkinson in convincing Lars of his position. Finally, after Lars had been insulted by being told he had been bought off, Lars asked if the manager had read the president’s proposal. He had not. Lars began to read from the proposal, pointing out logically that you can call it anything you want to, but it is amnesty. There is little or no punishment connected with having broken into this country (against the law), living here (against the law), and even working here (against the law).
The show was a perfect microcosm of what is confronting the Republican Party.
This issue threatens to split the party. President Bush no longer has to run for office and get the base’s support, but all other Republican candidates do. Without that base, these candidates will lose the worker bees of the party, those who do the grunt work and reach the most people. If the Republican Party is no better than the Democrat Party on this vital issue, why bother working for it? Those who do not understand the depth of feeling on this issue are doomed to be left wondering what went wrong, come November.
The Republican Party has always stood for respect for the laws of the country. They also see their schools being overrun with illegals, thereby having to cut out sports, music, art and TAG programs. They see their hospital emergency rooms filled with non-citizens who use the hospitals as primary care facilities and who are taking advantage of care provided by taxpayers.
They see their prisons overflowing with lawbreakers and their courts filled with people who can’t speak English and require translators, all at taxpayers’ expense. They are understandably angry at the legislators who allow this to happen. Many will either vote for another party or just sit on their hands at the mid-term elections. The party has some soul searching to do. Does it want cheap labor and the possibility of pleasing a certain racial constituency or does it value the people who have always supported it?
Barbara Anderson is a lifelong Republican. She writes for CaliforniaChronicle, NewMediaJournal, capitolhillcoffeehouse, and WebCommentary.