Arguments Against Immigration Reform Defy Reality

The arguments of immigration reform opponents are not based in fact.

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Less than two weeks after the Senate passed a historic immigration reform bill by a bipartisan 68-32 margin, opponents of reform have already started peddling a bevy of reality-defying excuses about why the House of Representatives should not follow suit. Faced with overwhelming support from stakeholders and groups across the political spectrum—from the Service Employees International Union, the AFL-CIO, and the National Council of La Raza, to the American Action Forum, Americans for Tax Reform, and the American Conservative Union—opponents of reform are grasping at straws in their effort to block reform from happening.

In potentially the most extreme example, William Kristol of The Weekly Standard and Rich Lowry of the National Review laid their cards on the table, urging the House to refuse to bring any bill to conference with the Senate for fear that immigration reform might actually pass. In their desperation, this small group of immigration opponents has coalesced around the following four arguments against the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, or S. 744, each of which requires a suspension of reality:

  • The Senate shut the American people out of the process of immigration reform by writing the bill behind closed doors.
  • Immigration reform will hurt working-class Americans.
  • The Obama administration will refuse to implement the border-security and enforcement strategies written into the bill.
  • Republicans can simply ignore Latino voters and continue to win elections by maximizing their share of white voters.

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