This past Monday I explained the best I could that the so-called "comprehensive" immigration bill being shoved in the senate is a disaster.
What I may have not explained is that it is not anything that will actually help the GOP actually win more Hispanic votes.
But not for the reasons that you think.
Look, the GOP nationwide basically, all things being equal, can count on about 25% of the Hispanic vote at the presidential level. In 2012 if polls are to be believed, it was down to 21% for Mitt Romney. And a big reason for that is because he had an incomprehensible position on illegal immigration. And it smelled of pandering.
And that is what this so-called "comprehensive" immigration bill will look like to many Hispanic voters.
Sure the majority take the pander from the Democrats, but that is because they are better at it. It looks like they care. At a level, yeah many do. They do the work that it takes to build bridges to this community.
What does the GOP do?
Well, every four years the Establishment types scream that there needs to be the monstrosity that the senate is ramming through and that will send Hispanic voters from heaven to our side. And they trot out how racist it is for many of us to point out that maybe comprehensive ain't so hot. Remember the so-called "comprehensive" health-care law?! Many of us want staggered reform.
And yes, there is a group that says why bother, they are as lost as Blacks and that if this passes, it is 11,000,000 (or whatever number they come up with) Democrats. And yet another group that says round 'em up and send 'em home.
Let's start from the last one.
There is no way that is going to happen unless the United States becomes a dictatorship. As bad as things are courtesy of the Dear Leader, President Obama, we are no where near there yet. Seriously, there is just no way that is going to happen. We could actually enforce the laws on the books and the 1986 version of this act and it would be a start. But the send 'em home people will not be happy because even with all of that, a lot will still be here and are probably going to at the very least be resident aliens.
Go back to the beginning. The "comprehensive" approach. It is as disastrous as the send 'em back people. Instead of treating illegal immigrants as people that did break the law, it makes them almost heroic for what they have done. And both sides involved in negotiations on this know that for it to actually do something marginal, each side will have to give something precious if they want to gain the trust of all Americans. And since the Democrats do not seem to want to do that, this gives a little, again little, credence to the argument among some GOPers that it won't matter because these are all going to be future Democrat voters.
Which leads to the important thing the GOP NEVER does.
In the United States are many, many multi-generational Hispanics that would be very ripe for at least looking at the GOP over the Democrats. They are the entrepreneurs. The ones that are hard working. Probably socially conservative. People that are not happy at the rise of big government. These are people that are solidly in the middle class and becoming upper middle class.
And yet where is the GOP for these people?
With the crickets chirping.
Because all the big-money consultants from Washington do not realize this is the future for the GOP. Not a boatload of illegal aliens but multi-generational Hispanics.
Psssst! Let me tell my fellow GOPers, it takes work to identify this group. But they are out there.
I have written this about 3,572 times but what the GOP HAS to do takes work. Hard work. Getting dirty.
It means they are going to have really make a multi-pronged effort.
Many Hispanics are no longer in the barrios. Many if not most are solidly in the middle class. So, we need to go where they live. Talk about real issues like education. Jobs. Personal freedom. Taxes. Because if we take them seriously, they will take them seriously.
In the poorer areas, we need to take the Democrats head on, again the best issue is education.
But if we do not take Hispanics as seriously as say suburban voters, well what do we expect but oh maybe 25% of their votes if we are lucky?
We need an army of Jack Kemps to get into the Hispanic communities. We have to tailor the message to their aspirations. And treat them as adults.
And that means to stop this mindless game with illegal immigration.
No matter what happens in the ongoing debate, the GOP will get NO credit at all.
So, time to start from the ground up.