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What Killed Immigration Patriotism In Texas? The Business Lobby.
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June 10, 2015, 08:54 AM
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What too many illegals are saying

Immigration patriots had high hopes for positive legislation coming out of deep-red Texas. Yet a number of bills designed to put a halt to the invasion faltered in the state legislature, leading open borders advocates to declare victory. How did this happen? Two reasons.

1. Structural changes in how business is conducted in the state legislature allowed Republicans to break away from the majority of their party to block certain bills.

State Sen. José Menéndez, another SA Democrat, described a similar sense of empowerment in killing off bad bills — a rallying cry that even lured some Republicans to discreetly stray from party lines. The same three-fifths rule implanted this year now requires 12 senators to block a bill, prompting recruitment of dissenters across party lines.

"The Republicans who joined us think it's not in the best interest of the state to be anti-Hispanic and anti-immigrant and don't agree with those politics," Menéndez told the Current.

The turncoats' identities are being jealously guarded to shield them from potential backlash from their base in the next election cycle, Menéndez noted.

"We tried to provide them anonymity so they don't get beat up in the next primary election," he said.

[Texas GOP Immigration Crackdown Fizzled... What Gives? by Tony Cantu, San Antonio Current, June 10, 2015]

2. The Business Lobby
Cal Jillson, professor of political science at Southern Methodist University, said that anti-immigration bills largely failed — for the second consecutive legislative session — because they ran counter to the powerful businesses lobby.

Rhetoric and slogans make for juicy red meat for the base, but they have nothing on business leaders who ultimately set the GOP's tone.

"At the end of the day, the business community is interested in cheap labor, particularly in the construction, hospitality and restaurant industries," he said. "This is not just this legislative session, but part of the culture of our politics forever."

Jillson invoked the trope of "campaigning in poetry and governing in prose" to further his argument.

"Texas has seen the value of a substantial supply of cheap labor. The anti-immigrant rhetoric and border security rhetoric is standard fare of elections, and that rhetoric is very effective," he explained. "But when you get into governing, you have the lobbies pushing in a different direction."

Here, we see the strategic problem for immigration patriots. We've won a rhetorical victory as Republicans almost always pose as friends of border security when running for office. We've even won some primary challenges. However, once they are safely ensconced in office, Republicans are all too eager to essentially conspire against their own base, even to the point of working with members of the other party in secret.

Primary challenges, aggressive reporting (with your help!), and a renewed spirit of public protest are all important tactics patriots need to utilize. But confronting the Big Money Problem in politics is an urgent challenge for authentic American conservatives, and that will take some creative solutions that we aren't going to hear from the think tanks and foundations of the Beltway Right.