Does truth prevail in Rubio’s immigration reform ad?

May 25, 2013

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The biggest stumbling block to immigration reform is no longer politics but how to market the deal to conservatives.  Both the House and the Senate now have their own “deals.”  What is left in the wake is how pro-immigration reform Republicans will make the case, especially to conservatives, that toughness against undocumented immigrants is not just a misleading ploy to push through an extremely questionable immigration reform package.

The House version features a “hard trigger” that blocks citizenship if the government does not implement electronic verification through E-Verify that would allow employers to check on the immigration status of workers.  The House bill likewise bans all entitlement benefits.

Both of the stated House proposals, however, will be hard sells to the Democrat base, while conservatives demand such tough assurances from their fellow Republican immigration reform proponents.   Another stumbling block for pro-reform Republicans is how to convince their base that the passing of an immigration bill will not be perceived as a victory for Democrats while a non-starter for Republicans.

Anxious over the negative feedback issuing from conservatives over the Senate’s “Gang of Eight” immigration reform proposal, an ad was developed tailored to appeal to conservatives, starring conservative Republican and Florida senator Marco Rubio touting the importance of passing immigration reform NOW.

In the ad, there is an implication that ‘border security’ will be of primary importance with strong triggers to be enforced first.

Most casual viewers of the TV being aired multiple time every day are unaware that the ad is backed by the Americans for Conservative Direction, an organization funded by Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook and a known Obama supporter. The founder of ACD is Joe Kaplan, who just happens to be Zuckerberg’s Vice President of U.S. Public Policy at Facebook.

The board of ACD includes:

*Haley Barbour, former Gov of Mississippi.

*Sally Bradshaw, former Chief of Staff for Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida.

*Dan Senor, former chief advisor to Paul Ryan on the Romney campaign.

*Rob Jesmer, former Exec Director at the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

These Republicans are known to be squishy on legalization of illegal immigrants and are not certifiable advocates of border control first.  In defiance of political correctness, all of the above can be labeled as RINOS, although this connotations doesn’t set well with establishment Republicans.  But by all means don’t be fooled into thinking the ACD is ‘conservative’, despite the use of the term in its name.

The ACD ad is further supported by the McClatchey Papers, Washington Post and CNN – none of which are considered conservative or Republican entities.

What about the claims made in the ad?  Jon Feere, Legal Policy analyst at the Center for Immigration Studies, has found all to be deceptive.

Rubio’s makes the following claims in his minute-long advertisement, represented to the public as “conservative immigration reform.”  The article by Jon Feere is worth a read.  It addresses each one of Rubio’s misleading claims as stated below.

  • “What we have in place today is de facto amnesty.”
  • “They have to pass the background check, they have to be able to pay a registration fee, they have to pay a fine.”
  • “No federal benefits, no food stamps, no welfare, no Obamacare, they have to prove that they’re gainfully employed.”
  • “It puts in place the toughest enforcement measures in the history of the United States, potentially in the world and it once and for all deals with the issue of those that are here illegally but does so in a way that’s fair and compassionate but does not encourage people to come illegally in the future and isn’t unfair to the people that have done it the right way.”

The ad is based on the “Gang of Eight” Senate bill:  Rubio is in essence helping President Obama fulfill his campaign goal of keeping all illegal aliens in the country and giving them benefits reserved for legal residents. Within six months of the bill’s passage, illegal immigrant would become immediately eligible for legal status, and many of the hoops that illegal immigrants would have to jump through to get such status amount to very little.  According to an article published on Wednesday, May 22, there would be immediate welfare payments to immigrants who get legal status.

As far as border security, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano simply has to submit a plan for border security and a fencing plan within six months of the passage of the bill.  As soon as Napolitano submits the plans, illegal aliens become eligible for work permits.  Rubio’s claim that illegal immigrants will receive no federal benefits belies the fact that illegal immigrants are already receiving federal benefits and the bill would do nothing to stop that.

Considering all the exemptions and waivers, it becomes difficult to conclude that the bill is a bold one with a tough line on immigration.  Regarding amnesties, they always encourage illegal immigration because they send the message that illegal entry is a feasible path to legal U.S. residence.

At the conclusion of the ad, the announcer requests all to stand with Marco Rubio to end de facto amnesty and instead support Conservative Immigration Reform.  How can this be so when Rubio himself is standing with Obama, Napolitano, La Raza, the ACLU, and many other amnesty supporters who cannot in any way be described as conservative.  All have ulterior motives, as do Republican who favor immigration reform.

The Senate has so far successfully resisted all amendments to its bill from those on the right demanding more border security.  Democrats insist that border security is already high.

The Heritage Foundation’s “Morning Bell” for Monday, May 19, Immigration Reform Should Strengthen, Not Cost, America, warned Congress about moving ahead with a comprehensive bill that would include amnesty for those who have broken the law and which would end up costing taxpayers as much as $9.4 trillion dollars in benefits.

Heritage’s solution:

Instead, Congress should proceed step-by-step:  border security, then workplace enforcement, and then fixing our broken legal immigration system.  These steps will fulfill past promises and benefit America economically while not adding the unnecessary fiscal costs of amnesty.

Friday, May 24, 2013 at 12:30 PM | Permalink

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