Mainstream Republican immigration policy may span from Michele Bachmann’s double-fence to Herman Cain’s electrified alligator platoons, but during yesterday’s national security debate, Newt Gingrich took a different approach. According to the former Speaker, undocumented immigrants who have significant roots in the United States – including sufficient church attendance – should have the honor and privilege of being condescended to by a President Gingrich, without fear of deportation…
Gingrich began his answer with the usual paeans to legal immigration and border security before stating what he knows to be a conservative apostasy: "If you've been here 25 years and you got three kids and two grandkids, you've been paying taxes and obeying the law, you belong to a local church, I don't think we're going to separate you from your family, uproot you forcefully and kick you out," he said. Later, he echoed [Rick] Perry closely: "I don't see any reason to punish somebody who came here at three years of age, but who wants to serve the United States of America."
On cue Michele Bachmann and Mitt Romney circled in to attack. "We need to move away from magnets, not offer more," Bachmann said. "Amnesty is a magnet," Romney echoed.
“Stop and look around, it's all astounding/Water, fire, air and dirt/F***ing magnets, how do they work?” Bachmann and Romney did not add, but Gingrich was left perturbed. Later in the debate, Gingrich left the realm of foreign policy to speak admiringly (and "frankly") of the Chilean model for Social Security, citing that nation's high savings rate.
I think it's clear what's happening here. America is 235 years old, and we're not aging gracefully. We're overweight and ornery and many of us can't bear to take a humane approach to undocumented immigrants. As far as democracies go, Chile's is prettier, younger, sultrier. I'm pretty sure Newt's saying that if we don't get our act together, he's going to divorce us.
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Chile, Debates, Immigration, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Primaries, Republicans