Hugh Hewitt observes that immigration policy is the Achilles' heel of the Republican Party:
After two days of conversations in DC with leading conservatives and officials, it is clear to me that the GOP is the party of expertise and achievement abroad and innovation and new ideas at home, always the superior position in politics. The only serious danger to its leadership is a split over immigration --the sort of split that destroyed Peel's Conservative Party over the Corn Laws and Gladstone's Liberals over Home Rule for Ireland and Chamberlain's theories of imperial preference. The president's plan will stir a lot of passions, and would best be coupled with an extraordinary push for southern border security in the form of a border length fence and an easy to patrol highway along its length.
I think that Hugh is right. It doesn't get a lot of mainstream attention, but there's a lot of anger about the largely uncontrolled nature of American immigration. You can see it on Web sites, and hear it on lower-rung talk-radio programs that aren't worried about maintaining the proprieties. And they're almost as angry at the Bush Administration as they are at the illegal aliens.
Personally, I'm all for immigration. I have family members who came here from Nigeria, and I think they've brought a lot to America. But, interestingly, they're much more upset about illegal immigration than I am. They followed the law, and jumped through the hoops, and resent that others skip the hard part and simply move here. It makes them feel like suckers for doing things the legal way.
Immigration brings us the best and the brightest from all over the world. But a nation that can't control its borders is failing at one of the core tasks of nationhood. And a nation that makes the best and the brightest feel like suckers is making a big mistake. So bring us your poor, your tired, and your huddled masses. But as legal immigrants.
Saying 'I told you so'
Back in December, Austin Bay wrote:
Put a circle around Jan. 9. That's the day Palestinians go to the polls to elect a president. In the desperate, divided and terrorized Palestinian statelet, electoral politics (ballots) are replacing pistol politics (bullets). That is a revolution -- a worldview-shattering, history-creating revolution.
Draw another circle around Jan. 30. That's Iraq's first election day.
Underline the two weeks prior to Jan. 30. That will be a savage fortnight in which terror campaigns and political campaigns collide.
Democratic candidates will be assassinated and polling stations will be blown to bits, as Saddamite and Al Qaeda reactionaries -- the Middle East's ancient regime of tyrant and terrorist -- attempt to force an oppressed people to submit one more time to the yoke of fear.
But they are going to fail.
They haven't failed quite yet, but so far Bay's predictions are looking pretty good. Even Le Monde, agrees that there is an " Arab Spring" underway. Assad and the Ba'athists will do their best, with help from the Iranian-backed Hezbollah. I don't think they'll succeed.
© 2013 MSNBC Interactive