Paul supports open immigration, so long as it’s legal

The libertarian Republican congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul, interviewed at Vdare, has good positions on illegal immigration, and even proposes a Constitutional amendment to end birthright citizenship of children of illegals. He’s against existing government benefits programs that serve as a magnet for illegals and are a huge drain on society. But …

What is your view on legal immigration?

… I’m not worried about legal immigration. I think we would even have more if we had a healthy economy.

At the moment, legal immigration is largely driven by “family reunification”, which means that an immigrant who is here can sponsor a wide range of relatives. Is that something you want to take a look at?

Once again, I don’t see that it’s a great danger except under today’s circumstances.

No surprise in any of this, but it’s useful to underscore the fact that Paul has no notion of American culture or nationhood beyond the bare legal fact of sovereignty. He has no problem with America turning into a Muslim or Mexican or Chinese country, or all three. He supports the principle of both indiscriminate immigration and unlimited immigration (i.e., outside-the-quota extended family preferences) incarnated in the 1965 Immigration Reform Act. He is, in short, a liberal.

- end of initial entry -

Mark Jaws writes:

Perhaps candidate Ron Paul is going as far as he politically can in pushing strongly for a nationwide crackdown on illegal immigration and the abuse of the 14th Amendment, while leaving legal immigration alone for the time being. When those aforementioned goals have been achieved, and the political climate has changed more to our liking, then the nation can seriously look at curtailing legal immigration, which in my book is a tougher nut to crack. After all, the Left did not give us systematic anti-white legislation in one fell swoop back in 1964. First it was civil rights, then the Immigration Act of 1965, then affirmative action in 1968, followed by multiculturalism of the 1980s, and in 2003 the Supreme Court decreed that “diversity was a compelling state interest,” and thus OK to deny whites their constitutional rights guaranteed under the 14th and 15th Amendments.

By the way, how is Tancredo on legal immigration? I think he is pushing for a limit of 200,000 per year.

LA replies:

Mark Jaws is saying that a political person who takes a considered position on a certain issue does so not because he believes it but because, despite the fact that he really has a different position, he is forced by political pressure to take the position he actually does take, though he doesn’t believe in it. What is there in Paul’s entire career and his expressed libertarian philosophy that would lead a reasonable person to believe that he “really” supports a reduction in legal immigration?

Mark Jaws writes:

“Perhaps Candidate Ron Paul is going as far as he politically can in pushing strongly for a nationwide crackdown on illegal immigration and the abuse of the 14th Amendment, while leaving legal immigration alone for the time being.”

To the contrary, Paul is not merely “leaving legal immigration alone for the time being.” He is saying that he supports in principle unlimited legal immigration. Is Mark suggesting that Paul really believes in reducing legal immigration, but that extrinsic political considerations are forcing him to pretend to take the exact opposite view? And how likely is any such analysis in Paul’s case, since he is an outsider from the party establishment and is running as a “conviction” candidate? In all kinds of ways, Paul is expressing heterodox opinions. Yet Mark Jaws thinks that in this one area of immigration he is acting like a conventional pol and covering up what he really believes.

I’ve seen this a million times, especially in the Bush years. When conservatives want to support some politician, but are uncomfortable with a particular non-conservative position of his, they convince themselves that the politician is “really” on the same side as themselves, and is only refraining from showing his true, conservative colors because of political calculations, but that eventually he will come around to the true conservative position. I can’t think of a single instance off-hand when this belief panned out.

Daniel writes:

But what better way to change that climate than to make the immigration a (the) major issue of the presidential campaign, right?

I really don’t trust “libertarians.” They are definitely not conservative.

You are right, playing just not to lose is a sure fire way to lose.

George writes:

Mark Jaws wrote: “Perhaps Candidate Ron Paul is going as far as he politically can in pushing strongly for a nationwide crackdown on illegal immigration and the abuse of the 14th Amendment, while leaving legal immigration alone for the time being.”

This comment raised a bigger question in my mind than the Paul candidacy.

The conundrum I wonder about is what should traditionalist Americans do if the GOP nominates a candidate who is solid on illegal immigration, but either wants to keep the status quo on legal immigration or increase it. Either Fred Thompson or Mitt Romney? BTW, see this article for Thompson’s views on birthright citizenship.

Would we be better off tackling the illegal immigration issue first and punt on legal immigration for later, or should we hope for a Clinton victory and let her completely discredit liberalism and multiculturalism?

I am tempted to say that we should hope for a Hillary presidency so that the country hits rock bottom and we can begin rebuilding from the ruins.

However, we need to keep in mind that although legal immigration is in many ways a bigger problem than illegal immigration, it is illegal immigration which is responsible for white babies being only 56 percent of births in the U.S. and why, according to VDare, that white babies will make up a minority of U.S. births in 2011.

As someone on Steve Sailer’s blog pointed out, if you remove the +500,000 anchor babies from the U.S., then between 60 and 65 percent of births in the U.S. would be white (although some Hispanic births are to ethnically white Hispanics such as Cubans, Brazilians or Chileans, etc.). Hispanic illegals are the main reason the percentage of white babies in the U.S. is dropping because the black birth rate has fallen faster than the white birth rate and is now below replacement, and the Asian birth rate isn’t increasing much either despite rapid Asian population growth.

Just because of birth right citizenship I am leaning towards saying traditionalists should support a top tier GOP candidate who would appoint conservative SCOTUS justices and at a minimum send the issue to SCOTUS for review.

What do you think?

LA replies:

There are no great options. If there were a GOP candidate who at least took some decent positions on immigration, then he might be worth supporting. But what would that minimal decent position be? For me, I think it would that he absolutely opposed amnesty, now in the future, and that he was serious about ending illegal immigration. Giuliani says his position is “end illegal immigration.” But then, once it’s ended, he wants amnesty and guest workers. So he wants to end illegal immigration only as a means of getting to his real goal which is to increase immigration. Such a person is out of the question as far as I’m concerned. So it seems to me the minimum is: no amnesty, ever; ending illegal immigration; and no increase in legal, though it would be far better to get a candidate committed to decreasing legal as well. Also, a commitment to ending birthright citizenship for illegals is essential, as is deporting all criminal aliens when they finish their prison term.

Mark Jaws writes:

I will go with any politician—conservative or libertarian—who is willing to secure the border, offer no amnesty, crack down on the businesses employing illegal immigrants, and end the business of anchor babies. That in itself is as far as we can go right now. Assuming we can get those passed, THEN the NEXT STEP will be to illustrate how much LEGAL immigration is taxing our infrastructure and filling our country with unwilling, and costly unassimilables. With the baby boom generation going on social security and Medicare within the next five years, the kitchen will be filled, but the cupboard will be bare. Thus there will be no sympathy for importing third world burdens and no room for inane platitudes about this being a nation of immigrants. A mountain is climbed one step at a time.

Orrin P. writes:

You are correct sir.

Paul also does not seem to understand that there is no neutral position on legal immigration as it applies to wages. You allow more, you cut wages and increase profits; you allow less, you increase wages and cut profits. This is one question that is outside the market’s ability to work out, because it is about defining the parameters of the market. It is greater than the market, which is incomprehensible to Paul. It is fundamentally political and not economic (though with economic consequences). It is a “what do we want our nation to be?” question. Paul does not seem to be able to grasp this.

This was a downer.

LA replies:

Interesting. A libertarian is not only blind to culture/nationhood, he is blind to any notion of a political society as distinct from the workings of the market.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 15, 2007 03:22 PM | Send

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