NEWS AND OPINION:
Hey, not so fast: Almost half of Americans — 46 percent — say President Obama should hold off taking executive action on immigration, according to a USA Today poll released Monday. And so, while the nation waits a little nervously, some offer historic perspective and a reality check.
“The 1986 immigration law gave amnesty to millions of immigrants but included no border security,” recalls keen-eyed policy analyst Roger Fleming, a former House Judiciary Committee counsel and contributor to PJMedia. “Not much has changed since then. Last year’s Senate bill, S. 744, specifies a path to citizenship, but does not in fact require the border be secured. Here America stands 28 years later with an open border and 11 million additional undocumented immigrants due to a government policy that fails to stop illegal entrants but spends millions on a bureaucratic maze to legally deport them. Our border policy entices people to enter surreptitiously, and then labels them illegal once they’re here.”
So secure the border, he says — high-tech fencing, aerial surveillance and manpower as required. There would even be an added benefit.
“There’d be no more labeling of people in America as illegals. They’d either be here legally or working their way toward legal status. If the world knew our border was secure, there would be little incentive to try to cross it. The human- and drug-smuggling cartels would suffer for it; and fewer would die in vain seeking illegal entry,” Mr. Fleming adds. “This summer Americans saw a snapshot of what has been happening on the border for decades — and they’re not forgetting it. Border security, despite best efforts, is not considered a racist term; and common-sense members from both parties must step up and do what is right by citizens on both sides.”
BOLTON STEPS UP FOR CASSIDY, MCSALLY
The midterms are not quite over for some. Through a political action committee, John Bolton donated to the midterm campaigns of 87 “national security” candidates who support a strong defense and a substantial American presence on the global stage. The former U.N. ambassador is not forgetting those whose fights have gone to overtime.
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Mr. Bolton has donated $5,000 to Rep. Bill Cassidy‘s campaign in the Senate runoff against Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu in Louisiana, and the same amount to fellow Republican Martha McSally, leading in a razor-close recount battle with Democratic Rep. Ron Barber in Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District. Both candidates have previously received $10,000 each from the Bolton PAC fund.
“I believe Cassidy’s success in December will send a clear message that voters are ready to change the direction of our country,” Mr. Bolton says. “Martha is a dedicated and honorable American veteran who will continue to serve her country and constituents as a strong leader. Throughout her career she has proven time and again capable of overcoming barriers to meet her goals.”
LOWEST APPROVAL, HIGHEST DISAPPROVAL
A significant news snippet from Gallup: “As the Affordable Care Act’s second open-enrollment period begins, 37 percent of Americans say they approve of the law, one percentage point below the previous low in January. Fifty-six percent disapprove, the high in disapproval by one point.”
This all means that Obamacare remains anemic and in need of a booster shot. And maybe some truth serum too, but no matter. On to the numbers: There’s a monster partisan divide: 8 percent of Republican approve of Obamacare compared to 74 of Democrats and a third of independents. Gallup analyst Justin McCarthy reports that 56 percent of “nonwhites” and 29 percent of “whites” approve; he says repeal of the health care law is unlikely but that modifications are possible. Happy customers do not appear to be part of the prescription, however.
“With approval holding in a fairly narrow range since last fall, it may be that Americans have fairly well made up their minds about the law, and even a highly successful second open-enrollment period may not do much to boost their approval,” Mr. McCarthy says.
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DAYS OF YORE
Congress must choose between rambunctious partisan infighting and voter demands that they cease such antics. As Republicans and Democrats spin their wheels and thump their chests awaiting January, some historic evidence suggests that it was ever thus.
“We generally lounge or squabble the greater part of the session, and crowd into a few days of the last term three or four times the business done during the proceeding months.”
— Three-time Tennessee Congressman Davy Crockett, from his 1835 memoir “An Account of Col. Crockett’s Tour to the North and Down East”
“Our people are slow to learn the wisdom of sending character instead of talent to Congress. Again and again they have sent a man of great acuteness, a fine scholar, a fine forensic orator, and some master of the brawls has crunched him up in his hands like a bit of paper.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson, in his journal, May 8, 1644
“I cannot refrain from concluding that all the great political questions are settled somewhere else than on this floor.”
— Josiah Quincy III, a Federalist congressman from Massachusetts, during a House debate in 1809
Yes, Mike Huckabee is striking a few strategic presidential postures. The former Arkansas governor has a new book out in January titled “God, Guns, Grits and Gravy” that showcases the resilience and know-how of small-town America and his own self-described optimistic patriotism. We also know that Mr. Huckabee, in the company of 100 other pastors, will soon conclude a 10-day tour through Europe titled, “Reagan, Thatcher, Pope John Paul II: God Raising Extraordinary Leaders for Extraordinary Times.”
He caps it off Thursday with a lecture and a gala dinner at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. He is ready to reveal all.
“Three remarkable leaders, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Pope John Paul II were the human instruments God used to change the course of all world history,” Mr. Huckabee says. “None of them was qualified, according to the press and political pundits or professional critics, but rooted in their unshakable beliefs, they rose to become prophetic voices for freedom and opportunity.”
POLL DU JOUR
• 67 percent of Americans say members of the SEAL team that conducted the raid on the Osama bin Laden compound should keep their identities secret; 70 percent of Republicans, 62 percent of independents and 74 percent of Democrats agree.
• 49 percent disapprove of the SEAL who shot bin Laden taking public credit; 44 percent of Republicans, 45 percent of independents and 59 percent of Democrats agree.
• 47 percent would disapprove of team members “selling their accounts of the raid;” 42 percent of Republicans, 45 percent of independents and 52 percent of Democrats agree.
• 28 percent approve of them selling their stories; 36 percent of Republicans, 31 percent of independents and 19 percent of Democrats agree.
Source: A YouGov poll of 998 U.S. adults conducted Nov. 8-10 and released Friday.
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