Harold Meyerson [Email him] recently gloated that “the South may soon undergo an epochal political change” because of the Amnesty/ Immigration Surge bill. In the meantime, Meyerson advocated building a border fence “in the right place” from Norfolk to Dallas which would keep America safe from “the all-round fruitcakery of the right-wing white South.” “Start the border fence in Norfolk, Va.” [Washington Post, June 25, 2013]
I would like VDARE.com readers to ponder the implications of Meyerson`s ingenious thought experiment on the last fifty years of U.S. immigration policy. In this thought experiment, 15 Southern states (Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia) seceded from the Union in the year 1965 and constructed a double-layered border fence along the Potomac and Ohio Rivers which wraps around Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas down to the Mexican border.
This border fence separates a restored Confederacy—the “Republic of Dixie”—from the restored Union—the United States of America. What would the last fifty years of American immigration policy have looked like in an independent Southern Republic without the interference of the “damnyankee”?
(Note: in the vote counts that follow, I indicate the when legislators failing to vote with square brackets .)
In the U.S. Senate, the South provided 16 of the 18 votes against the Immigration Act of 1965, and the region voted 16 to 13 against the bill. Sen. Norris Cotton of New Hampshire was the only senator from the Northeast that voted against the bill. Every senator from the Midwest also voted for the bill.
United States: 76-18  The South: 13-16
In the U.S. House, the South voted 79-43 against the Immigration Act of 1965. But every member of the U.S. House from the Northeast voted for the Immigration Act of 1965—except for Rep. Leo O`Brien of New York, who failed to cast a vote.
In other words, the disastrous nation-breaking 1965 Immigration Act would never have passed if it had been up to the South.
United States: 318-95 The South: 43-79 
In the U.S. Senate, the South voted with the rest of America for the Reagan-supported IRCA Amnesty of 1986. (Strangely enough, Ted Kennedy and other Northern senators such John Kerry and Joe Biden voted against the bill—presumably arguing the amnesty provisions were too onerous)
United States: 69-30  The South: 25-4 
In the U.S. House, the South voted against the IRCA Amnesty of 1986. Thus IRCA would have been killed in an all-Southern Congress.
United States: 230-166  The South: 55-69 .
In the U.S. Senate, the South voted with the rest of America for the Immigration Act of 1990 which raised the limits on legal immigration and created the Diversity Immigrant Visa program. But this was the last vote in either the House or the Senate in which the South voted for increased immigration.
United States: 81-17  The South: 21
In the U.S. House, the South overwhelmingly voted against the Immigration Act of 1990. The region provided over half the votes against the bill.
Thus, as was the case with the Immigration Act of 1965 and the IRCA Amnesty of 1986, the Immigration Act of 1990 would have died in an all-Southern Congress.
United States: 231-192 The South: 39-106 
In 1996, the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly passed the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRAIRA) which required illegal aliens who had been in the United States for more than 180 days to remain outside the U.S for three years, and those present for more 365 days were required to remain outside the U.S. for ten years.
United States: 97-3 The South: 29-1
In the U.S. House, the South (and the rest of America) overwhelmingly voted for IIRAIRA, which was sold as a “crackdown” on illegal immigration.
United States: 333-87  The South: 115-31 
- “The Sensenbrenner Bill”: Border Protection, Anti-Terrorism and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005
In the U.S. House, the South voted for the “Sensenbrenner Bill” in 2005 which would have built a 700 mile border fence on the Mexican border. Illegal aliens were outraged by the Sensenbrenner Bill and famously bathed Los Angeles in a sea of Mexican flags.
United States: 239-182  The South: 105-39 
In the U.S. Senate, the South voted against “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” when it passed the Senate in 2005.
United States: 62-36  The South: 9-20 
(Ultimately, the House and Senate couldn`t reach an agreement to go to a conference committee, and both the Sensenbrenner Bill and “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” died at the end of the 109th Congress.
In the U.S. Senate, every single Southern senator voted for the “Secure Fence Act” in 2006.
United States: 80-19  The South: 30-0
In the U.S. House, the South overwhelmingly voted for the “Secure Fence Act.” The bipartisan push for “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” in the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate had outraged the conservative base. George W. Bush signed the Secure Fence Act in a clumsy attempt to rally demoralized Republican voters to save the Republican majority in Congress in the 2006 elections. (It failed).
United States: 283-138  The South: 117-30 
In the U.S. Senate, “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” was killed on a critical cloture vote in 2007. Southerner senators overwhelmingly voted against cloture.
United States: 31-61  The South: 2-28
In the U.S. House, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the outgoing Democrat majority passed the DREAM Act in a lame duck session of Congress after the Tea Party`s huge victory in the 2010 midterm elections. The DREAM Act would have failed right there in an all-Southern Congress.
United States: 216-198  The South: 56-89 
In the U.S. Senate, the DREAM Act was killed in a riveting cloture vote in 2010. 21 out of 30 Southern senators voted against cloture, killing the bill.
United States: 55-41  The South: 7-21 
For over a decade, the DREAM Act had been blocked in Congress by stubborn opposition from Southern Republicans, but President Obama issued an executive order last summer that granted a de facto amnesty to the so-called DREAMers.
Although there was never a vote in Congress on Obama`s DREAM Act executive order—scandalously—President Obama, born in Hawaii and elected to the Senate from Chicago Illinois, wouldn`t have been eligible to run for president in an all-Southern electoral college. If he had been eligible, he would have been decisively defeated in both the 2008 and 2012 elections.
United States (2008 Election): 370-164 The South (2008 Election): 55-129
United States (2012 Election): 237-206 The South (2012 Election): 42-148
In the June 27 vote in the Senate on “Comprehensive Immigration Reform,” the South voted 17 to 13 against the bill. Thus it would have been killed, like the Immigration Act of 1965, in an all-Southern Senate. It would certainly be killed, like the IRCA Amnesty of 1986 and the Immigration Act of 1990, in an all-Southern House.
United States: 68-32 The South: 13-17
In the U.S. Senate, the South voted 21 to 9 against the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which was imposed on the South by the rest of America in order to reconstruct the Southern electorate.
United States: 77-19  The South: 9-21
In the U.S. House, the South voted 78 to 49 against the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and produced 78 out of the 85 votes against the bill.
In the U.S. Senate, Sen. Richard Russell led a filibuster that lasted 54 days against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was rejected in the South, but was passed by a bipartisan Northern majority.
United States: 73-27 The South: 8-22
In the U.S. House, 102 of the 135 representatives who voted against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 were from the South, and 2 were from the Northeast.
United States: 290-135  The South: 21-102
Conclusion: In spite of
- the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which enfranchised the 56 percent of America`s black population that lives in the South;
- the Immigration Act of 1965, which has flooded the South with millions of black, Asian, and Hispanic immigrants;
- the IRCA Amnesty of 1986 and the Immigration Act of 1986, which granted amnesty to millions of illegal aliens and greatly increased legal immigration;
- not to mention the millions of non-Southern Whites who have settled in the Sunbelt South since the 1960s,
even now in 2013 a majority of Southerners in the Senate voted against “comprehensive immigration reform.”
How long can Dixie continue to carry the rest of America on its back? In the U.S. Senate, the Northeastern states voted 21 to 1 in favor of “comprehensive immigration reform.” In 2010, every single representative from New England voted for the DREAM Act. And in 1965, every single representative in the House from the Northeast voted for the Immigration Act of 1965, and only one senator from the Northeast voted against it.
If history is our guide, Southern Republicans in the House will again probably succeed in killing “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” this time around.
But what about next time? How long can we expect this charade to continue?
For almost fifty years now, Dixie has voted for border security and against Third World immigration. But, because of the existence of the Union with the Northeast, West Coast, and Upper Midwest, we have gotten illegal alien amnesty, Open Borders, and Third World immigration—among a laundry list of other undesirable things that could never pass an all-Southern Congress.
In his 1995 book Alien Nation: Common Sense About America`s Immigration Disaster, VDARE.com editor Peter Brimelow predicted:
“The contradictions of a society deeply divided as the United States must now inexorably become, as a result of the post-1965 influx, will lead to conflict, repression, and perhaps, ultimately to a threat thought extinct in American politics for more than a hundred years: secession.
… [d]eep into the twenty-first century, American patriots will be fighting to salvage as much as possible from the shipwreck of their great republic. It will be a big wreck, and there will be a lot to salvage.”
In the run-up the Civil War, Robert Barnwell Rhett, the father of secession in South Carolina fumed in a report to the Provisional Congress
“It is impossible, we suppose, for the wit of man to conceive a worse government, than that by which the absolute rule of one people, acting under popular institutions, is established over another people, having different pursuits of industry, habits, and institutions. In such a government, the forms of free government, instead of affording any mitigation, only increase the tendency to excess and tyranny. Of what avail is representation in a legislative body, when the majority are united together to aggrandize their section, at the expense of the minority section? The oppressed minority in the legislature, may be zealously faithful to the people they represent and yet they are perfectly powerless to protect them. …
The majority, mean to plunder and wrong the minority. They mean to make the weaker section their tributaries. Between a representation incompetent to protect, and no representation, there is no difference, where there are conflicting interests in a common legislative body.”[A Fire-Eater Remembers:The Confederate Memoir of Robert Barnwell Rhett, Ch. 4]
Polls have already showed that, for example, 26% of Georgians and 42% of Georgia Republicans were prepared to support secession after President Obama’s re-election. GA Republicans split on secession, Deal vulnerable, Public Policy Polling, December 07, 2012. As Southerners consider Harold Meyerson`s implacably hostile words, and as they react to the recent Supreme Court rulings on gay marriage and Affirmative Action, the recent Senate votes on illegal alien amnesty and gun control, and the upcoming debate on “climate change” legislation and the imminent implementation of Obamacare, millions of them have already no doubt begun—in the phrase widely used in the ante-bellum period—to “calculate the value of the Union.”
William L. Houston (email him) is a graduate of the University of Alabama.