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Joe On Immigration Vote--"We Had Them All The Way!"
Not only did we win but, in the end, we coasted. Although analysts, including Senators on both sides, predicted a razor thin margin on the cloture vote, it turned into a 46-53 rout.
Nothing goes in one direction forever—and that includes the influence of the ethnic identity lobby on U.S. immigration policy. The immigration winds continue at our backs. As I noted earlier this month, the other side hasn't won diddly.
This time, the American people's voice was heard loud and clear, Even our arch opponent Frank Sharry, director of the National Immigration Forum, acknowledged that the outpouring of faxes, phone calls and e-mails made our victory possible.
Said Sharry, with a nod toward the grassroots organization NumbersUSA, "You have to give them credit."[Foes of Immigration Bill Whip Up Grass Roots, By Nicole Gaouette, Los Angeles Times, June 25, 2007]
Oddly—or maybe not—Sharry was more gracious than the Grand Compromise's chief architect, the pathetic Sen. Edward M. Kennedy.
After his humiliating defeat, here's how Kennedy sized us up. He suggested that the immigration reform community would resort to "Gestapo" measures. To compare patriotic Americans to Nazi Germany's secret police is as ugly as it gets.[Senate Blocks Effort To Revive Immigration Overhaul, By Robert Pear and John Holusha, New York Times, June 28, 2007]
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote in a blog item that Kennedy, 75-years old, is of an age when many show signs of senility. If he were senile perhaps, I theorized, that might explain his immigration obtuseness.
Given Kennedy's "Gestapo" crack, I've upgraded him from possibly to probably senile.
Anyway, let's move on to the good news about Thursday's telling vote—and there's lots of it.
Among the things we learned:
- The only people in America who work "in the shadows" are certainly not illegal aliens. They are instead the notorious Senate "Gang of 12" (plus several more) who drafted the treasonous legislation behind closed doors. Now, left with plenty of egg on their face, they are stalled and may face uncertain political futures. Americans have long memories when it comes to betrayal on immigration votes.
- Democrats, always viewed suspiciously by VDARE.COM, may not be quite as bad on immigration as suspected. At least some are our friends. Fifteen voted "Nay" They are: Baucus (MT), Bingaman (NM), Brown (OH), Byrd (WV), Conrad (ND), Dorgan, (ND), Harkin, (IA), Landrieu (LA), McCaskill (MO), Nelson (NE), Pryor (AR), Rockefeller (WV), Stabenow (MI), Tester (MT), Webb (VA)
- Certain Republicans, previously thought to be beyond reach on immigration, voted "Nay" They are: Brownback (KS) although as noted by Patrick Cleburne his vote is tainted, Collins, (ME), Domenici (NM) and Hatch (UT)
- No one from either party shifted his voted from "Nay" to "Yea."(Read the complete vote count here.)
- Representative government is not be quite dead yet. In fact, this vote could mark a turn around in responsiveness. We likely have seen an end to the behind shut doors approach to drafting legislation.
Desperate to shift the blame for S. 1639's colossal failure away from themselves and onto anyone or anything handy, Democrats seek to revive the Fairness Doctrine.
Discarded by the FCC in 1985, the Fairness Doctrine required broadcasters to present opposing viewpoints with equal time on controversial political issues. Before1985, government regulations called for broadcasters to "make reasonable judgments in good faith" on how to present multiple viewpoints on controversial issues.
Behind the movement to scotch any broadcasts that do not support the Senate's left-leaning perspective are the usual cast of characters:
- The ever-slick Rules Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein:
"I believe very strongly that the airwaves are public and people use these airwaves for profit. But there is a responsibility to see that both sides and not just one side of the big public questions of debate of the day are aired and are aired with some modicum of fairness."
- Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin:
"I have this old-fashioned attitude that when Americans hear both sides of the story, they're in a better position to make a decision."
- Former presidential candidate John Kerry:
"I think the Fairness Doctrine ought to be there ... One of the most profound changes in the balance of the media was when the conservatives got rid of equal time requirements. The result is that they've been able to squeeze down and squeeze out opinion of opposing views."
According to Oklahoma Republican Senator James Inhofe, the attack on conservative talk radio dates back to a conversation he claims he overheard between Sen. Barbara Boxer and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Inhofe said that during an elevator ride Boxer and Clinton were moaning about "right-wing extremists" and calling for a "legislative fix."
Although Boxer and Clinton deny that the exchange took place, it isn't hard to imagine it. [GOP Preps For Talk Radio Confrontation, By Alexander Bolton, The Hill, June 27, 2007]
Just when you think that Senate leadership cannot look any more foolish or out of touch, it comes up with an attack on freedom of speech…but only in broadcast journalism, not print.
The reality is that conservative talk radio does present both sides of the story. That's why the shows are so entertaining.
Beyond that and even more insulting to our intelligence is that those most bent out of shape about talk radio are either constantly on conservative radio pitching their arguments or could easily get on by simply calling and asking to be interviewed.
Does anyone believe that Barbara Boxer would be turned down if she called Sean Hannity to request an appearance?
One of life's early lessons is—or should be—that when things go wrong, look in the mirror first. Don't be a coward by trying to shift the culpability.
Talk radio and the Internet are only partially responsible for the crushing defeat of S. 1639. The proposed legislation was lousy. That, more than anything, caused it to go down. Had it not been such a stinker, talk show hosts wouldn't have had so much fodder.
This week's experience should have been educational for Senate imperialists. But apparently the message about personal responsibility hasn't reached them yet.
Joe Guzzardi [e-mail him] is the Editor of VDARE.COM Letters to the Editor. In addition, he is an English teacher at the Lodi Adult School and has been writing a weekly newspaper column since 1988. This column is exclusive to VDARE.COM.