January 30, 2019

CUA Law Professor Marshall Breger wrote a January 10, 2019 op-ed for Moment magazine entitled "Americans Want an Immigration Fix"

Americans Want an Immigration Fix

From: Moment magazine
Date: January 10, 2019
By: Marshall Breger

No one doubts that Donald Trump's approach to immigration is two parts bombast, two parts cruelty and two parts fear. Other than a general antagonism to immigration, illegal or legal, from non-Nordic countries, he offers no serious or comprehensive plan to solve the real and continuing problems at our borders. Unfortunately, many Democrats have largely given up on any effort to do so either. This wasn't always so. In 2013, for example, the Democrats worked with moderate Republicans on a bipartisan comprehensive plan to reform immigration. Back then, it was the House Republican leadership that blocked the plan, refusing to bring it to a vote after it had passed in the Senate-seemingly to avoid giving a win to President Barack Obama. Now it's the Democrats whose approach is apparently that if Trump is for something, they are against it.

They forget that for many Americans, immigration was one of the top two issues in the 2018 election. In a recent Quinnipiac poll, support for building Trump's wall was 49-49 among voters over 35. (In other polls, those who wanted a mix of electronic and physical barriers was even higher.) Many of these voters view immigration policy and the need for a wall as reflections of severe cultural and economic crises. Their fears of so-called unrestricted immigration feed their support for Trump.

The Democrats ignore these realities at their peril. To appeal to these Trump voters, they need, as David Ignatius has written, to make clear "that not every…immigrant who wants to come to America can do so." Only when they have had a Sister Souljah moment in this regard-and admitted the need for immigration limits-can they go on to develop a more humane and forward-looking immigration policy.What might such a policy look like? Here are a few points it should at least address.