John McCain may have motivated the conservatives in the Republican Party by picking Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his vice president, but we all knew that the old John McCain would return.
John McCain became nationally recognized politician because of his propensity to break ranks with his party. It is the primary reason that even during a heated presidential election, he is still the Democrats’ and the Mainstream Media’s favorite Republican. He is the Republican who loves the Democrats. John McCain denounces unpopular Republicans at every turn, joins forces with the Democrats to thwart Republican initiatives, and has been a steadfast supporter of amnesty, the most odious repudiation of conservative principles as far as today's piece is concerned.
During the early primaries, a New York Post writer predicted that it was the most conservative anyone would ever see John McCain. I nodded in agreement as that prediction quickly came true. In the months and subsequent nomination that followed, instead of consolidating support among the varying constituencies of the party, Mr. McCain focused his efforts on distancing himself from any Republican who dared to speak out against any liberal person or policy. The senator hammered the North Carolina GOP for an ad that linked local candidates who supported Barack Obama, to the latter’s infamous friend, Jeremiah Wright. Rush Limbaugh wondered what the senator would do once he denounced all of his supporters. Then came the appearance of Sarah Palin and the stampede of movement conservatives to Mr. McCain.
Then came the GOP convention of early September and the enthusiastic coronation of the would-be emperor. Despite their farcical “Country First” convention slogan, even I was a little moved by the Republicans. After all, they have to be better than the Democrats, right?
But, there was a little voice in my head that reminded me that I had a strong distaste for Mr. McCain for the past eight years for a reason: he is not a conservative. Mr. McCain stirringly rhapsodized about the multiple failures of government and his never-wavering support of unwinnable war, but the issue that was conspicuously absent was immigration.
It was during the pre-primary Republican debates that anyone last heard a word about our nation’s illegal immigration problem. When pressed if he would sign McCain-Kennedy or a similar bill, the monstrous amnesty bill that nearly buried the Arizona senator’s nascent campaign in the summer of 2007, John McCain asserted that he would veto it. He also promised that he would secure the border and enforce it.
Conservatives everywhere chuckled to themselves at the notion that Senor Amnesty would veto amnesty if it came to his presidential desk. But ever since he wrapped up the nomination, Sean Hannity and others have defended him as if John McCain = Tom Tancredo. Once he obtained the magical number of delegates in March, John McCain became mysteriously silent on immigration. Until Monday.
Speaking to a crowd in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Mr. McCain broke his relative silence on the issue. There, he expressed his intent to maintain a guest worker program, just one of the Bush administration’s euphemisms to describe their policy of amnesty for illegal immigrants. Mr. McCain then promised that it would definitely be a temporary worker program. He promised that people in the guest worker program would only work in the United States for a specified time, and if they stayed for the duration and did not renew their permits, then they would be forced to return to their native country.
Well, John McCain is back. Despite all the campaign rhetoric to the contrary, the Republicans have demonstrated again that they are unconcerned about the border. The entitlement incentives for people to illegally immigrate into the country have not changed. There are still “anchor babies.” Illegals can still obtain welfare. And the argument, “Well, they just do the work Americans won’t do,” has not gone anywhere. In addition, Mr. McCain was awfully vague about the enforcement of his guest worker program. Just how would it be enforced? It's not enforced now!
The startling truth in this debacle is that the Democrats actually do have a point about John McCain being four more years of the same, i.e. the Bush administration. However, John McCain’s immigration policy is probably not what they mean. But it cannot be overlooked that Mr. McCain is more of President Bush on immigration, as he is also more of President Clinton, George H. W. Bush, and sadly, Ronald Reagan.
Even before the selection of Sarah Palin, there were conservatives who reluctantly came over to John McCain because “he’s right on the war.” Mr. McCain obtained the Republican nomination in the first place because he kept telling the public that he would be a competent commander-in-chief, despite the fact that he has continually confused Sunni with Shi’ite. If John McCain, like President Bush before him, wanted to appear proficient on protecting the homeland, then I would have thought that securing the border and knowing who was in the country, would be a top priority. While there is nothing in the Constitution to warrant wire-taps, there are mandates for the executive to protect the homeland from outside invaders. Whether it’s terrorists who are hell-bent on murdering innocent Americans or illegal immigrants who sponge up the treasury, it is an unpardonable abdication of responsibility.
Will conservatives still allow themselves to be fooled by Republicans who do not have their interests and values in mind? Republicans tout the importance of securing the border, but they are the ones who have authored and signed some of the most horrific amnesty proposals. An influx of illegals who sap up welfare are more inclined to vote for the welfare professionals, the Democrats.
Does winning elections right now supersede long-term goals and possibly even political survival? Keep in mind that once John McCain wins the presidency, he no longer has to worry about a large Hispanic vote in Arizona. And once he is the president, he won’t have to worry about the long-term implications immigration policy will have on either the country or his party.
Conservatives largely looked the other way during President Bush’s 1st term, but swung some heavy lumber in 2007 when “comprehensive immigration legislation” was being proposed which would have granted amnesty to as many as 20 million illegal immigrants. They were finally tired of defending a man they once believed to be one of their own. Perhaps 2008 should be the year that conservatives abandon the Republican Party because of lies and broken promises due to illegal immigration.
And perhaps conservatives should phrase their discontent with Mr. John McCain in a way that he can understand: “No mas.”