“Newt Gingrich, the GOP and Sanity”
By Raoul Lowery
For the umpteenth time this 2012 presidential campaign, the Republican race has lurched in another direction. It is the Gingrich Paradigm based on “family values” and “humane” treatment of transgressors of administrative laws on immigration in the past. People who cross the border without talking to an immigration official – commit an administrative offense, not a felony crime. In the face of a tsunami of so-called “conservative” but realistically ultra-right nativist opposition Newt Gingrich offered a Ronald Reagan–like proposal to solve some of the illegal alien question.
Citizen boards would filter though the illegal alien community to find and allow contributing long-time community members to stay, albeit without a path to citizenship.
Gingrich stood in front of God and the world the other night in Washington, D.C. and offered a view of all-ready-here illegal aliens that abounds with reason, calmness and wisdom.
He posited that trying to deport 12 million people is ludicrous, but that illegal aliens who have not been in country long, haven’t contributed to the community and have no particular roots “should go home.”
He also advocates a “work permit” program which, alone, eliminates most of the illegal alien problem. People who have been in country for “25 years” and “have children and grandchildren” and “haven’t broken any laws” should be allowed to stay. We cannot break up families, he said. That would violate Republican “family values.” What’s really interesting is that four years ago when President George W. Bush, John McCain and Democrat Ted Kennedy were pushing similar Comprehensive Immigration Reform, Gingrich opposed that effort. 2008 candidate Mitt Romney on the other hand, supported the Bush effort as “reasonable.” Romney went after Gingrich when Newt proposed this “humane” treatment by challenging the plan as “amnesty.” He was joined by others, however, the race is now between Romney and Gingrich and this issue separates the two like no other. Joining Romney are the usual suspects like NumbersUSA, a front group founded and funded by the country’s best known ant-Catholic and anti-Mexican bigot, John Tanton who also founded FAIR and the Center for Immigration studies (CIS). Iowa Congressman Steve King, who replaced former congressman and electorally-disgraced Tom Tancredo as the vocal anti-illegal alien leader in the House of Representatives told Iowans that Gingrich could have used better language but didn’t come out against Gingrich.
King is the source of many illegal alien myths. He is careless in his statements and rarely says anything that can be documented with facts or statistics.
King simply doesn’t like Mexicans. Lunatic fringe hate groups took the most offense at Gingrich’s statements. William Gheen, of the Americans for Legal Immigration PAC – a fringe group of Mexican haters – remarked that Gingrich will “now take the Perry Plunge” referring to Texas Governor Perry’s slide after commenting that those who object to the Texas law that allows children brought here illegally as minors to have in-state college tuition were “heartless.” Wrong, Gheen, Perry plunged because the world saw him as too dumb to be President because he could not debate his way out of the 5th grade, not because all Texas legislators, Republicans and Democrats, except for FOUR voted for in-state college tuition for Texas residents who graduated from Texas schools. Gingrich’s position is not new.
He supported Ronald Reagan’s signing of the 1986 Immigration Control Act that legalized millions.
He opposed the Bush plan four years ago and has now moderated that position in his campaign for the Presidency and has so spoken for months. With the failures of Michelle Bachman, Herman Cain and Rick Perry to maintain campaign support, Gingrich has risen like a Phoenix from the ashes by presenting himself as a reasonable, experienced leader who has grown in wisdom and stature after years of a rock and roll personal life when he couldn’t keep his zipper zipped up or when he threw verbal political bombs with every utterance and appeared to be plain mean.
It’s obvious that Gingrich has changed in temperament. Watching him outline his controversial immigration solutions with his opponents and critics panting/salivating to attack him showed him to be well prepared and calm in the face of the forthcoming fury he, himself, predicted. They didn’t disappoint.
Fringe candidate Michelle Bachman charges that Newt is the most “liberal” on immigration, for example. Will their attacks drive his poll numbers down? We don’t know, but if they don’t, Republicans will garner more Hispanic votes next year than they could have counted on before Gingrich’s “humane” plan to alleviate some of the problem of 12-million illegal aliens living and working among us. Michael Reagan on Fox News: “(My father Ronald Reagan) Would’ve supported probably the Newt Gingrich position on immigration…
He would have applauded Newt Gingrich on that.” If 30/40% of Republicans agree in January/February primaries and caucuses, President Barack Obama is done. Contreras has 8 books at amazon.com