Bush does not want to give in to his (former) base on immigration. So how to help the Republicans retain control of both houses of Congress? Make a big deal about gay marriage in hopes that the Rubes can be fooled again.
With just five months to go before the midterm elections, President Bush, whose once-faithful base has abandoned him in droves, is turning to the same conservative hot-button issues that won him re-election in 2004 -- homosexual "marriage" and judicial nominees.
The president, now fully aware that his plummeting approval ratings could cost the Republicans control of one or both congressional chambers in November, will use his radio address today and a speech Monday to push a constitutional amendment banning same-sex "marriage," just as the Senate prepares to vote on the issue.
Bush wants to combine homosexual marriage and nomination of conservative judges into a single election issue.
The crux of his argument is simple: A majority of Americans support the idea that marriage is exclusively between a man and a woman, and activist judges across the country are thwarting the will of the people. While 45 states have either a state constitutional amendment or a statute defining marriage as heterosexual, judges in Washington state, California, Maryland, New York and Nebraska have overturned those laws.
Thus, there is a White House strategy to move swiftly to nominate more conservative judicial nominees, which political guru and top Bush political strategist Karl Rove sees as a decisive issue in elections -- an issue Mr. Bush effectively exploited in 2002 and 2004.
He could win back a big chunk of his base by calling for internal enforcement of immigration laws (which he's systematically undermined) and construction of a border wall. But he doesn't want his party to win elections as much as he wants to turn the United States into Latin America. So that's not going to happen. Hence the attempt to use a symbolic issue important to Christians to manipulate them to vote in spite of their dissatisfaction with him on other issues.
WASHINGTON -- President Bush pressed a passionately divided Congress on Thursday to reach election-year compromise on immigration legislation that provides a chance at citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants already in the country.
With his speech before business leaders and members of a government-sponsored civilian volunteer group, Bush hoped to build momentum for Senate and House negotiators to resolve difficult disputes. The two houses have passed sharply different versions of the legislation. To achieve one of his top domestic priorities of the year, Bush will have to bring around conservatives in his own party.
Republicans are overwhelmingly against Bush's position on immigration. If he was going to put the Republican party first in order to mobilize Republican voters he would not right now be pressuring Republican Congressmen to vote for something that will reduce their reelection chances.
Bush is pushing House Republicans to support immigration policy changes that would endanger their reelection. As Joe Guzzardi reports calls to House members are overwhelmingly against amnesty and guest workers.
News reports repeatedly emphasize that House Republicans are bombarded with irate calls demanding a border security approach only…no amnesty, no guest workers. [Immigration Deal At Risk As House GOP Looks To Voters, Jim VandeHei and Zachary A. Goldfarb, Washington Post, May 26, 2006]
A Congressional aide representing a border state told me that over 90% of the calls his office receives are adamantly opposed to amnesty. According to the aide, so that at least some non-immigration related work would be done during the day, his staff will only accept phone messages from his district’s residents
Contact your US House Representative and tell your rep you expect his or her strenuous opposition to the US Senate's massive immigration amnesty and guest workers program, the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act (CIRA, S.2611).
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2006 June 04 06:58 PM Immigration Politics|