Dems' dilemma: The country wants border security, but their base wants open borders
Donald Trump has the Democrats over an immigration barrel, and Rep. Tim Ryan knows it.
Ryan has announced his intention to run for president, and the Ohio congressman is one of the only Democrats in the race who clearly sees that the nation at large wants better border security, but the radical left that has taken over the party wants to be more welcoming of illegal aliens, even going so far as advocating the elimination of ICE.
This sets Trump up for nicely for 2020. While Democrats will be trying to outdo one another in promoting open borders policies, Trump will be talking immigration meat and potatoes; securing the border to protect the country.
"You can't come to Ohio and the Great Lakes states and assure them about immigration without first and foremost assuring people that you are going to protect their children," Ryan said. "It has to be a lot smarter and more effective than it is now."
But so far this year, most of Ryan's rivals have chosen a different path, almost entirely focused on denouncing Trump's policies as un-American, bigoted and inhumane, while offering new policies that are more welcoming to undocumented immigrants than anything offered by President Barack Obama or, in some cases, the party's last nominee, Hillary Clinton.
The result is a Democratic primary debate that is far more liberal on immigration than any previous campaign, fueling a new debate over whether the party is giving Trump an unneeded boost in key swing states as it tries to animate its own left-leaning voters.
At the heart of the problem is the stark divide between progressive Democratic primary voters and white working-class swing voters when it comes to the security issues around immigration.
The numbers help explain Trump's own strategy of fanning fear about immigration, while creating controversy around the issue that tends to enrage Democratic voters. In a typical provocation, Trump said Friday he was considering releasing detained immigrants [sic] in liberal cities, as punishment for Democratic refusal to change immigration laws. A few weeks earlier, he labeled Democrats the party of "open borders, drugs and crime."
It says a lot about the Post's mindset that its reporters would consider it fear-mongering for Trump to warn about the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens currently in American prisons. Criminals come across the border illegally. To deny that fact is simply to deny reality. It's a real problem that needs to be addressed by doing a much better job in securing our southern border.
Trump is using immigration as a wedge issue, not only to clearly mark the divide in our country over illegal immigration, but his efforts also have the effect of dividing the Democratic Party, further distancing the far left from ordinary Democratic voters.
It's a clever strategy, if a cynical one, that promises to pay big dividends in 2020.