Were John Kerry a little less of an establishmentarian and more of a populist, George Bush would be in deeper trouble than he already is.
The battleground states of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia have been hemorrhaging industrial jobs. All four are fertile soil for populist plowing on the issue of the outsourcing of America by the global companies that underwrite the Davos Republicans.
Unfortunately for Democrats, Kerry, too, is a NAFTA-GATT globalist.
Now, it appears several “red states” in the Southwest could be in play if Kerry would take a tough stand against the Bush amnesty plan for illegal aliens. Unfortunately for the Democrats, Kerry is also ally-ally-in-free on illegal immigration.
How hot is the amnesty issue?
In Arizona, Republican Reps. Jeff Flake and Jim Kolbe are facing primary challenges powered by the amnesty-for-illegals issue. Kolbe represents the district south of Tucson, which is a main invasion route of the armies of the night that are altering the character of our country.
Kolbe has smiled benignly on that invasion for years.
In Utah, Rep. Chris Cannon was denied renomination by a GOP convention for supporting amnesty and has been forced into a June 22 primary against former state Sen. Matt Throckmorton. In his campaign to win renomination at the convention, Cannon reportedly outspent his challenger 18-to-one.
Throckmorton is pounding Cannon on his support for amnesty and obstruction of every proposal to get immigration under control. Writes Joe Guzzardi of VDare.com, the premier website on the immigration question, “Cannon has either voted for or co-sponsored nine bills since 2001 that are de facto amnesties.”
Throckmorton’s campaign has now attracted Big Media and backing from patriot groups demanding that the feds start defending our borders as well as we do Korea’s and Kuwait’s, and enforcing our immigration laws rather than figuring out ways to get around them to pander to the Hispanic vote.
Cannon is so far out, he won the Excellence in Leadership Award from the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund – a Ford Foundation-funded Latino group. In his acceptance speech for the MALDEF prize, Cannon did an excellent imitation of Vicente Fox:
We love immigrants in Utah. And we don’t make the distinction very often between legal and illegal. In fact, I think Utah was the first state in the country to legislate the ability to get a driver’s license based on the matricula consular, and of that I am proud.
The matricula consular is an ID card handed out by Mexican authorities to aid illegal immigrants.
Unfortunately for MALDEF’s man in Washington, Republicans in Utah do make a distinction between legal and illegal immigration. But because politicians like Cannon do not, America is host to between 8 million and 14 million illegal aliens, with millions more heading for our border to take advantage of Bush’s proposed amnesty.
In the aftermath of 9-11, Bush stood at 90 percent approval. His hold on his party blanketed rising opposition among the rank-and-file to his policies. Now, with Iraq reaching quagmire status and Bush’s approval falling to where it is possible he does not survive November, long-suppressed dissent has begun to break through.
We may be at the beginning of another Goldwater moment in the Grand Old Party, like 1960, when the grass roots began to rumble and rise in rebellion, and reject Eisenhower Republicanism while still liking Ike.
What are the issues that can sunder the party in a Bush second term or in a post-Bush era? Immigration is the most explosive, as is seen in the stunning recoil to Bush’s amnesty early this year and the hasty abandonment of the plan by the White House. A crunch is coming as Bush, Rove and the moderate Republicans are still determined to push ahead with amnesty, to compete with Democrats for the growing Hispanic vote. This could tear the party apart nationally, as it has already begun to do in Arizona and Utah.
A second issue cluster revolves around NAFTA-GATT trade deals, demands by the World Trade Organization that America change its laws to conform to WTO rules, a merchandise trade deficit nearing $600 billion and the 2.7 million manufacturing jobs that have disappeared under Bush.
A third issue is Big Government Conservatism, in the phrase of the Weekly Standard’s Fred Barnes. Under Bush, domestic social spending has exploded unlike in any period since LBJ’s Great Society and the Clinton surpluses have vanished into Bush deficits all the way to the horizon.
Fourth, with endless wars looming in Iraq and Afghanistan, the neo-imperialism of the neoconservatives who beat the war drums for the invasion will be on the table next year. If Bush does not win in a sweep and silence critics by his domination of the party, the GOP may be headed for a 1960’s-style civil war. Let it come.