Democrats panic over DACA
With less than a month to go on making the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals executive order, dating from President Obama's pen, permanent, Democrats are in a panic about their prospects for making DACA law.
That's not my word; it's the word from the far left itself, as seen in this post from Josh Marshall's left-wing Talking Points Memo (TPM), from writer Alice Ollstein:
TPM explains that Democrats have no more political cards to play after all the multiple government shutdown dramas they created over DACA recipients, including Nancy Pelosi's eight-hour floor speech, conducted in four-inch heels, something that, Salena Zito credibly argues, reduced Democrats' leverage even further, and certainly won't help their prospects for a wave election at the end of 2018.
Get your schadenfreude on with this from TPM:
"All leverage is gone," a grim-faced Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) told reporters before the vote. "Back in September, we said we would have leverage on the budget and on the debt ceiling. Now, we're giving it all up. Once you've lifted the caps, do you really believe anybody is going to take us seriously?"
"It's folly," he continued bitterly. "You guys are going to laugh, as well you should."
We certainly are, Luis. Now quit being left-wing.
Here's the problem with the whole mess for the Democrats.
Democrats staked their entire party's fortunes on the prospect of 700,000 or, given chain migration, millions of newly minted Democratic voters from the DACA deal. They know full well that most DACA recipients aren't the overachieving, I've-got-a-new-life-at-last entrepreneurial immigrants of the legal variety; they are largely underachievers who have managed to assimilate only into the underclass and are used to having everything handed to them, including citizenship, for free. Many do not speak English, and a few valedictorians aside, they can have as many as two misdemeanors, sometimes three, for wife-beating, graffiti-spraying, drunk driving, and the like. Obviously, most of these people are high consumers of social services of all kinds, from food stamps to medical services to education to justice system "interaction." As a result, they become Democratic voters, at times through the muscle of Democratic political machines, if not for the freebies themselves.
Democrats ignored everyone else and their concerns about illegals driving down wages, the moral hazard of additional just-wait-for-the-next-subway amnesties to fuel more illegal immigration, and the high costs of added social services while getting little of value in return.
They pretty much have no other program than that.
They also treated DACA as a racism issue, rather than a rule of law issue, which angers voters as well. Anyone opposing DACA was nothing but a racist, according to the Democrat line, so give the DACA recipients everything they want – to avoid the dreaded racist label. Didn't work for them. Yet the only other thing that defines Democrats is identity politics, so of course they had to make DACA about racism. That well can yield only so many times.
Besides this, they made DACA a confrontational social justice matter. Voters "owed" DACA recipients citizenship; it wasn't a favor. This explains the DACA protests as a Democrat strategy – the sit-ins, the blockages at congressional offices and at Disneyland, loud speeches and editorials, and university coddling. America, once again, had done something bad by not giving DACA recipients instant citizenship. Well, most Americans are tired of being the bad guy for the crime of having immigration laws, same as every other country on Earth, including those countries DACA recipients hail from.
As a corollary to that, the Democrats browbeat Americans as "anti-immigrant," particularly in the biased media. The U.S. admits one to three million legal immigrants each year, so there is no argument about its welcome to immigrants. The DACA issue is about whether every immigrant should have to obey U.S. laws. Arguing that some don't requires much more than sob stories, given what's known about them. Democrats offered nothing but shrill semantic shifts, conflating immigrants with illegal aliens. That didn't work, either.
Their entire approach to the matter was wrong. They should have taken half a loaf in favor of the DACA recipients in the form of allowing a border wall, ending chain migration, installing E-Verify, and dropping the visa diversity lottery if they really wanted DACA that bad. They didn't.
Aside from that, they should have reconsidered their whole strategy of making American citizens the bad guy, and instead asked for a DACA amnesty – not as an entitlement, but as a favor.
With the party built on entitlements, identity, and political correctness, that was obviously a bridge too far.
So now it's time to laugh at these guys, schadenfreude-style, just as Gutiérrez said.