Jim Simpson, an activist who has worked closely with the Center for Security Policy in his effort to stop refugee resettlement efforts in the United States, said in a radio interview earlier this month that advocates of expanding refugee resettlement are in fact trying to “bring in third-world people from all over the world to dilute our culture” and make the country “unrecognizable.”
Simpson told Joe Miller, the former Alaska GOP Senate candidate turned conservative radio host, that the goal of the 1980 Refugee Act “was to bring in third-world people from all over the world to dilute our culture, to make it unrecognizable, to bring in people with no experience of American concepts of the rule of law, of individual freedom, of religious freedom, people with no concept and, frankly, a lot of people with no interest in adopting the American way of life other than to suck up welfare resources.”
This “massive Cloward-Piven strategy,” he said, referring to a 1966 essay that called for acheiving the expansion of social services by overloading the welfare system, is an attack on “the West, as it always has been with everything.”
Simpson cautioned his listeners not to be swayed by arguments about compassion for refugees, such as the millions of people who have been displaced by Syria’s civil war. “The Left, just as it does with everything, they look for the hook of compassion and trick people into believing that that’s what their agenda is,” he said, “when their agenda really is to flood this country with so many different problems, people from so many different places, that our country becomes unrecognizable.”
In an address to the Eagle Forum’s annual convention in St. Louis on Sept. 11, Ann Coulter repeated her claim that Democratic candidates are “winning elections they never could have won before” because they used the immigration system to “bring in ringers” after they “realized they couldn’t get Americans to vote for them.”
As a result, every bad thing that has ever happened to America is the result of the country’s immigration system, she concluded.
“Everything bad thing that has happened, everything that you see them talking about on TV, whether it’s Obamacare or the Iran deal, Obama losing the war in Iraq for us, gay marriage, all of this is as a result of immigration, it never could have happened without Obama,” she said. “We are looking at, for the rest of our lifetimes, an entire Supreme Court of Ruth Bader Ginsburg if this isn’t stopped.”
Coulter said that the only legal immigrants who should be allowed to stay in the country are the ones who vote Republican: “To paraphrase Donald Trump, 20 percent are probably good people, they’re Republicans. But the other 80, the 8 out of 10, the other 80 percent, I’m sorry, they’ve got to go.”
At Eagle Forum’s annual convention in St. Louis earlier this month, Ann Coulter stuck with her standard speech about how the legal immigration system was set up by Democrats to destroy the GOP and, by extension, America, while praising Donald Trump for bringing anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies into the mainstream.
The U.S. should be so resistant to accepting new immigrants, Coulter told the Religious Right crowd, that she wouldn’t even let Christians fleeing the Mideast due to persecution from ISIS settle as refugees in America.
“First we have to save America,” Coulter said to applause. “It’s like the warnings that you are read on an airplane, ‘If you need your gas mask, put your gas mask on first and then help your child.’ We can’t help anyone if we’re Mexico.”
Citing the Tsarnaev brothers, who were the children of refugees from Chechnya, Krikoran declared that the refugee resettlement program is “guaranteed” to “admit significant numbers of ISIS and Al Qaeda into the United States.”
“We all saw the picture of that poor kid who had drowned on the beach in Turkey,” he said. “Well, what are we going to say to an American mom and dad of a kid who’s killed by an ISIS terrorist who’s let in as a refugee?”
In an interview with Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson yesterday, Rep. Steve King warned that President Obama is “seeking to change the demographics” of the U.S. through his immigration and refugee resettlement policies, asking, “How long is it before the culture of America is changed?”
King had a simple explanation for the president’s policies: He wants to “change the demographics” of America in order to increase the number of “Democrat voters.”
The Iowa Republican challenged advocates of refugee resettlement to “tell me how you want America to look, because America’s being transformed because of immigration policy and I’m like Ann Coulter, I like the America we had.”
Why would you do this if you were president of the United States? He’s seeking to change the demographics of the United States of America. And changing the demographics changes the politics, they’re going to have Democrat voters at least two-to-one, some numbers go all the way to five-to-one, and I’m not speaking only of Muslims, I’m speaking of the Central American immigrants that come into America too.
So, any way to win. Bill Clinton accelerated the naturalization of more than a million people before his ’96 re-elect, and we were appalled by that. But this president is pushing, and it turns out to be millions. And we should look at the kind of character that America’s going to be.
As much as I love and appreciate people from any place on the planet, this country has been made up of, is a center-right country, is Christian based, that is our morality, we believe in freedom of religion but if you brought in, say, all the Muslims in the world into the United States, you know it changes the culture.
So if it turns into a few hundred thousand every year, how long is it before the culture of America is changed? And we’re willingly, we’re knowingly and willingly changing the culture of America by government policies driven out of the White House and we aren’t even having a national debate about how that changes our country and is it good or is it bad. I have not seen either the level of assimilation of Muslims into the broader American society, or any place in the world, for that matter. So I’d like to see that model, point to that, tell me how you want America to look, because America’s being transformed because of immigration policy and I’m like Ann Coulter, I like the America we had.
Last week on her American Family Radio program, Sandy Rios invited Ann Corcoran on to discuss the Obama administration’s decision to expand the number of refugees from Syria’s civil war who will be settled in the United States. Corcoran, who runs the anti-refugee blog Refugee Resettlement Watch, warned against accepting Muslim refugees from Syria, whom she claimed want to move to America in order to establish a “caliphate.”
Lamenting the fact that English-speaking Americans now have to hear Arabic words, Rios asked Corcoran to explain the concept of “Hijra.” Hijra, Corcoran claimed (falsely), is “the Islamic doctrine of immigration. Mohammad told his followers that it was their duty to migrate … The idea is to spread Islam to create a caliphate, literally a worldwide caliphate.” This, she explained, is why Muslim Syrians want to immigrate to the United States, not because they are fleeing an ongoing civil war in their home country that has killed thousands and displaced millions of people.
Later in the program, Rios advocated for barriers to be put in place to stop this “invasion” of an estimated 10,000 of the four million Syrians who have fled the country. Specifically, Rios said, “Christians and children and intact families, maybe, could stay, but all the single, Islamic dudes, go back home, go somewhere else, but not here. And I think that’s a reasonable line to draw.” Single, Muslim men, according to Rios, can be presumed to be only trying to enter the United States to spread the caliphate.
Rios also took time to remind listeners that there are already Islamist threats in the United States government, namely former secretary of state Hillary Clinton and her aide Huma Abedin. Clinton, claimed Rios, was instrumental in passing a rule in the UN that “would make it a crime to criticize the prophet around the world” and that Clinton “brought that back home, that you can’t say anything bad about Islam.” In fact, the Obama administration has opposed efforts to criminalize “blasphemous” speech. Rios then restated the tiredconspiracytheory that Huma Abedin is a spy for the Muslim Brotherhood.
Ann Coulter has made no secret of her love for GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump, gushing at a campaign rally in Iowa earlier this week that “President Trump” is proof that “God hasn’t given up on America yet.” Coulter took the Trump love-fest to Iowa talk radio host Simon Conway’s program yesterday, declaring that in Trump, the Republican Party finally has a candidate “who genuinely loves America.”
Coulter told Conway that she understands “why the Democratic Party wants to transform America into a third-world hellhole” through immigration reform, because Latinos “have been trained to memorize the symbol of the Democratic Party and will go and bloc vote for the Democrats,” but that she was baffled by “why the Republicans are going along with it.”
The answer, she said, was because of pressure from all their big corporate donors who do not care about America” or “American culture.” But thankfully, she said, “Trump is exposing them all.”
“We finally have someone who genuinely loves America and is not beholden to the donors,” she said. “He will be beholden to no one but regular Americans when he, well I hope, when he becomes president.”
RWW’s Paranoia-Rama takes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right.
While it may be too late for Donald Trump to save us from stock market turmoil (he warned us!), he just might be the one who saves us from the even greater threat of refugees from war-torn nations, gay marriage and the “War on Christmas.”
5) Who Will End The War On Christmas?
Donald Trump, of course, and he’ll do it in a big way, very classy, and you’re going to love it. While speaking with an Alabama radio host, Trump declared that he is sick and tired of the “assault on anything having to do with Christianity” and promised that he “will assault that.”
“They don’t want to use the word Christmas anymore at department stores,” he said. “There’s always lawsuits and unfortunately a lot of those lawsuits are won by the other side. I will assault that. I will go so strongly against so many of the things, when they take away the word ‘Christmas.’ I go out of my way to use the word ‘Christmas.’ Some people say to me, some people do this very professionally, ‘Oh don’t mention the word Christmas.’ I said, ‘Like Hell I’m not going to mention it.’ I mention Christmas before I even start speaking. There’s a great assault on Christianity in so many ways.”
Then Trump moved on to the actual persecution of Christians under ISIS, before then falsely claiming that the U.S. refuses to accept Christian refugees.
Incidentally, it seems that this is yet another issue that Trump has evolved on, since he and his business empire were once enemy combatants in the War on Christmas.
The coming economic meltdown of course will lead to “fascism, communism, war, and hunger,” Beck explained, telling viewers that it is “not a matter of if” but when: “Are you prepared? Do you have food on hand? Do you have cash on hand? Do you have ammunition and guns and God, most importantly?”
3) Refugees Destroying America
The extremist Oath Keepers have discovered the latest attempt to “destroy the Republic”: refugees.
The group recently warned that refugees who may “harbor terrorist intentions” are coming to the U.S., egged on by Democratic politicians who want their votes and don’t care about committing “national suicide.”
Apparently, these refugees are assisted by churches, liberal organizations, George Soros and the United Nations, all in order to surreptitiously push their left-wing policies on America.
“I can say, without hyperbole,” writes Oath Keepers’ David Codrea, “this is a vital report addressing nothing less than the survival of the Founder’s Republic in the 21st Century, one that you ignore at your peril, and at the peril of everyone you love.”
2) Gays Coming To Recruit Your Kids
Conservative talk show host Tamara Scott, who also happens to be a member of the Republican National Committee and the Iowa leader of Concerned Women for America, said she is befuddled by people who think that gay people don’t choose to be gay.
She had this question for the “haters”: “If homosexuality is truly just something that happens, then why, one, do we have to recruit it in our kindergarten through college-level educational system and, if it’s just an everyday thing, why does it need all these special protections in the civil rights?”
While speaking on a conservative radio show, Davis portrayed himself as a victim of the “war on Christianity” and lamented that “Christians just don’t have rights anymore” as a result of the Supreme Court’s “unconstitutional” gay marriage decision.
“Our law says ‘one man and one woman’ and that is what I held my hand up and took an oath to and that is what I expected,” he said. “If it takes it, I will go to jail over — if it takes my life, I will die for because I believe I owe that to the people that fought so I can have the freedom that I have, I owe that to them today, and you do, we all do. They fought and died so we could have this freedom and I’m going to fight and die for my kids and your kids can keep it.”
While introducing Donald Trump at his rally in Dubuque, Iowa, last night, Ann Coulter said she has “felt like she’s dreaming” ever “since Donald Trump announced that he’s running for president” because now the media is covering her criticisms of U.S. immigration policy.
“I love the idea of the ‘Great Wall of Trump,’” she said. “I want to have a two-drink minimum, make it a big worldwide tourist attraction and every day live drone shows when anyone tries to cross the border.”
She said that after nearly giving up hope for America after President Obama’s re-election, she now knows that all is not lost.
Coulter offered a biblical analogy to explain Trump’s rise: “Now I think it’s like Joseph in the Bible. He had to be sold into slavery, imprisoned, betrayed so that eventually he could save the Jews. Maybe Mitt Romney had to lose and maybe we had to give Republicans one more chance in 2014 and maybe Mitch McConnell and John Boehner had to betray us once again to pave the way for President Donald Trump. God hasn’t given up on America yet.”
On his radio program yesterday, Bryan Fischer took a call from a listener who had a rather unique suggestion of what to do with people who illegally cross into America repeatedly: place them on military transport planes and then dump them out in the middle of nowhere.
"Mike from Virginia" told Fischer that repeat offenders "should be loaded on to C130s and para-dropped into Tierra del Fuego, and Nigeria, and North Vietnam" and Fischer thought that was a pretty good idea, though he did not necessarily support going to such extreme measures.
"What I would be in favor of," Fischer said, "is when we deport them, let's deport them as far away from the American border as we can. Return them to their home country, but as far away from the American border as is possible. If you take them across the border and deport them, they're just going to be right back. They may be right back on the same day, so there has to be some distance that you create and then people begin to understand, look, I'm going to have a find a way to migrate clear across the country to get back to my home, let alone make another stab at reentering the United States":
On his radio program today, Bryan Fischer declared that God created the United States for the purpose of spreading the Gospel of Christ throughout the world and therefore illegal immigration must be stopped because it is causing division within the nation and sucking up valuable resources that could otherwise be used for spreading the Gospel.
"Our purpose as a nation," he said, "is to advance and expand the Kingdom of God. That is the calling that is on the United States ... And we have, up to this point in history, we have abundantly fulfilled that mission. The United States has invested more financial resources and sent more personnel carrying the message of the Gospel to more darkened corners of the world than any other place on the planet. And that is our calling and that is what illegal immigration is threatening."
"One of the things we need in order to carry out the Great Commission is a sense of national unity," Fischer continued. "We are one people with a common purpose, that has to do with the things of God, with expanding the reach of God, expanding the impact that God's kingdom and the Gospel has on the world. Well, you can't do that if you're fractured, if you're divided over race, if you're divided because you have people living illegally who don't even belong here, have no intention of assimilating, no intention of entering into that larger purpose for your nation. They're not going to be an asset to that; they're going to be a detraction to that. They're going to diminish the capacity of the country to do that."
Herb Titus, the Christian Reconstructionist attorney and longtime Roy Moore ally, weighed in yesterday on the debate raging in the GOP about birthright citizenship, claiming in an interview with Florida talk radio host Joyce Kaufman that the 14th Amendment’s citizenship guarantee is part of an unbiblical attack on America’s God-ordained borders and on God Himself. He also called for the U.S. to restrict immigration from countries without a “Christian-principled culture.”
Kaufman — famous for resigning as then-congressman-elect Allen West’s chief of staff after she was criticized for such comments as calling for the hanging of undocumented immigrants — insisted that granting citizenship to the American-born children of undocumented immigrants “creates a hostile environment for real American citizens” because “these children who we have granted this precious status of being American citizens have become such a tremendous drain and at the same time replaced American workers.”
Titus told Kaufman that the problem with America’s citizenship laws isn’t just birthright citizenship but people coming in and setting up “cultural enclaves” and forgetting that America was founded on “the law of Nature and of Nature’s God.”
“If all we have is people who come to the United States to set up an entirely different culture, as we have so much nowadays in America where people are setting up their little cultural enclaves, we’re no longer the United States of America, we’ve become a kind of multicultural society that’s based on I don’t know what, since we don’t know what the principles are that undergird this nation anymore. We’ve forgotten the law of nature and nature’s God and the very foundational principles in the Declaration of Independence, and that’s what unites us,” he said.
He added that his view was rooted in the Bible: “The boundaries that are set for the United States of America are essential for determining whether America can be a nation. This is why when God led the people of Israel out through Moses into the Promised Land, they established themselves as a nation with boundaries. And if you don’t have boundaries, you don’t have a nation.”
Saying that immigration has created a “modern-day Tower of Babel,” Titus insisted that “it’s important for us to recognize that we have a responsibility before God the Creator to maintain the integrity of our borders. That’s very crucial in terms of integrity as an American Christian.”
“The Great Commission says that the Church is to go into all nations, not the nations coming into America. We’re supposed to take the good news to all nations,” he said.
“Look at some of the African nations, they’re adhering to some of the basic principles of the Creator, and God’s blessing them for doing so.”
After Kaufman complained about communities of immigrants from the Middle East that she said displayed an “anti-American” culture, Titus praised Gov. Bobby Jindal’s line that “immigration without assimilation is an invasion.”
“This is exactly what we’ve had,” he said, claiming that the U.S. used to only allow immigration from “countries that have a Christian-principled culture.”
“We had a carefully designed policy for many years to allow as immigrants into the United States only those people from countries that have a Christian-principled culture,” he said. “We may have had different denominations, it wasn’t a denominational thing, it was basically an understanding that if you didn’t begin with God and the Book of Genesis, ‘all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, to secure these rights governments are instituted among men.’ If we didn’t have people who understood that or who wanted that and were willing to receive that, they could not become citizens of the United States. We don’t ask that of anyone anymore.”
The governor appears to be trying to appeal to a GOP establishment that has tried to alter the party’s stained image on immigration at the same time as he is trying to win over Trump’s supporters “by going on the attack and emphasizing his conservatism on key issues.”
Afraid of angering the party’s dominant right-wing flank, Walker is now bravely standing for nothing.
In an interview yesterday with Newsmax TV after a press conference at which he reiterated his support for ending birthright citizenship, Rick Santorum promised that as president he would “absolutely” sign a bill repealing the right, saying that it could probably be done without a constitutional amendment.
Ignoring the clear history of the 14th Amendment, Santorum told Newsmax’s Steve Malzberg that it wasn’t clear whether the Constitution requires that children of foreign nationals born on U.S. soil be granted citizenship. Santorum said that he would leave it up to the Supreme Court to interpret the stipulation that birthright citizenship applies only to people “subject to the jurisdiction” of the United States — long interpreted by the courts as excluding only a small class of people such as the children of ambassadors.
“That’s a decision that’s actually appropriately left up to the Supreme Court,” Santorum said. “These are the kinds of decisions that the Supreme Court should be making with respect to how do we determine somewhat vague language in the Constitution, not doing what they did and have been doing routinely is creating new constitutional rights.”
When Malzberg asked if the Supreme Court has ever “weighed in on whether the 14th Amendment covers these babies born of illegals,” Santorum replied that “to my knowledge, they have not.”
In fact, the Supreme Court did just that in 1898, ruling that a California-born child of Chinese immigrants, who were later barred from returning to the United States under the Chinese Exclusion Act, could not be denied citizenship under the 14th Amendment. That case, U.S. v. Wong Kim Ark, cemented the right to birthright citizenship guaranteed by the 14th Amendment.
Earlier this week, Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson proposed that states press undocumented immigrants into indentured servitude, asking a skeptical listener, “What’s wrong with slavery?” So, naturally, Sen. Ted Cruz dropped by Mickelson’s program this morning to discuss assaults on American Christians by the “atheist Taliban” and to discuss illegal immigration.
When Mickelson asked Cruz if he thought “the term ‘anchor baby’” is an offensive way to describe the American-born children of undocumented immigrants, who are automatically granted birthright citizenship under the Constitution, Cruz laughed.
“You know, it’s amazing what the media chooses to get offended by,” he said. “They don’t get offended when an illegal alien murders Kate Steinle in San Francisco. They don’t get offended when the Obama administration releases 104,000 violent criminal illegal aliens. And yet they get offended by people trying to solve real public policy problems.”
This led Mickelson to make a convoluted argument that his dictionary says that “anchor baby” is offensive but also defines marriage as between a man and a woman, so liberals must be wrong.
“You know, there is power, Jan, to simply speaking the truth, to not engaging in this politically correct nonsense and double-speak,” Cruz agreed. “Speak honestly and candidly about the challenges we face, whether it’s the assault on marriage — and we have the Supreme Court and the radical left trying to forcibly redefine marriage and to tear down what has been a fundamental building block of our society from time immemorial — or when it comes to, on immigration.”
Later in the interview, Cruz told Mickelson that “one of the real benefits of Donald Trump’s being in this race is it’s forced the mainstream media to talk about illegal immigration.” This, he thought, would ultimately turn anti-immigrant voters to him, because “for years, I’ve been leading the fight, actually been standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Steve King.”
“I stood with Jeff Sessions in the Senate and Steve King in the House and we led the fight and defeated amnesty in the United States Congress,” he boasted.
“You know, it is an open legal question whether changing birthright citizenship could be done through statute or could be done through a constitutional amendment,” Cruz claimed. “There are serious constitutional scholars on both sides of that argument. As a policy matter, I think it is basic common sense that we shouldn’t be incentivizing illegal immigration, that it doesn’t make sense to provide rewards for people to break the law and come here.”
“In the end, I think we should pursue whatever means will be effective in ending birthright citizenship,” he said.
While ending birthright citizenship would take a “long-term solution,” Cruz said, if he is elected he will immediately “put boots on the ground to secure the border” and “stop releasing violent criminal illegal aliens.”
Remember the GOP autopsy report, the document the Republican National Committee commissioned following the party’s pummeling in the 2012 elections? It may be hard to remember since the report, which called for the party to remake its image but supported no substantive changes in public policy, has been pretty muchignored by Republican politicians since its much-heralded release.
The Republican “autopsy” came in part in response to Mitt Romney’s abysmal performance among Latino voters after he promoted a draconian “self-deportation” strategy for immigrants. At the time, even Donald Trump denounced Romney’s “crazy policy of self-deportation,” calling it “maniacal”: “It sounded as bad as it was, and he lost all of the Latino vote. He lost the Asian vote. He lost everybody who is inspired to come into this country.” GOP leaders claimed that they were ready to get on board with immigration reform.
Although the autopsy urged the GOP to “embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform,” the House GOP leadership refused to even bring a bipartisan reform bill, approved by the U.S. Senate, up for a vote. However, House Republicans did approve an extreme measure from one of the party’s most toxic voices on immigration: Rep. Steve King of Iowa.
While Trump hopes to win the GOP nomination and, in the process, move the field even farther to the far right, the GOP has effectively given up on its own recommendations to build bridges to a community which increasingly sees it as xenophobic.
Just read what the autopsy report had to say in response to Romney’s collapse among Hispanic voters:
If Hispanic Americans perceive that a GOP nominee or candidate does not want them in the United States (i.e. self-deportation), they will not pay attention to our next sentence. It does not matter what we say about education, jobs or the economy; if Hispanics think we do not want them here, they will close their ears to our policies. In the last election, Governor Romney received just 27 percent of the Hispanic vote. Other minority communities, including Asian and Pacific Islander Americans, also view the Party as unwelcoming. President Bush got 44 percent of the Asian vote in 2004; our presidential nominee received only 26 percent in 2012.
If Hispanic Americans hear that the GOP doesn’t want them in the United States, they won’t pay attention to our next sentence. It doesn’t matter what we say about education, jobs or the economy; if Hispanics think that we do not want them here, they will close their ears to our policies. In essence, Hispanic voters tell us our Party’s position on immigration has become a litmus test, measuring whether we are meeting them with a welcome mat or a closed door.
On issues like immigration, the RNC needs to carefully craft a tone that takes into consideration the unique perspective of the Hispanic community. Message development is critical to Hispanic voters.
This post by PFAW Political Director Randy Borntrager was originally published in the Huffington Post.
Discussions of Governor Kasich's role in the 2016 election have centered around his strategy of defining himself to voters as an alternative to Jeb Bush: a moderate, compassionate conservative without Bush's last name. This strategy presupposes that both Bush and Kasich are in fact middle-of-the-road Republicans who hold moderate positions that would make them electable next November.
That proposition is false. While Kasich and Bush certainly took a more measured tone in the first Republican debate compared to, say, Donald Trump, their policy positions and records as governor in Ohio and Florida show that they're just as extreme and far-right as the rest of the Republican field.
Few issues demonstrate the extreme agenda of Bush, Kasich, and the Republican Party more than a woman's right to choose. Kasich has directly targeted access to legal abortion in Ohio though enacting medically unnecessary, cumbersome laws that closed abortion clinics. He signed a bill including a policy that restricts rape crisis counselors from providing referrals to abortion services to rape survivors. Jeb Bush calls himself the "most pro-life governor in modern times." As governor, he tried to restrict the ability of a mentally disabled rape victim to have an abortion. The "Scarlet Letter" law enacted during Bush's term as governor required a single mother who did not know the father of her child to pay for a month-long newspaper ad before putting her child up for adoption. The ad had to include personal details about the mother and her sexual history, complete with dates and locations where the child could have been conceived. Bush and Kasich are just as bad as their fellow candidates like Scott Walker, who recently signed a 20-week abortion bill even though he promised voters in his last campaign that the right to choose is between a woman and her doctor; or Marco Rubio, who co-sponsored a 20-week abortion bill in the Senate.
On Social Security, Kasich and Bush support former President George W. Bush's plan to privatize Social Security. Had his plan been enacted, the stock market crash of 2008 would have decimated Social Security savings of seniors across the country. That doesn't seem to bother anyone in the Republican field other than, of all people, Donald Trump. He's actually spoken out against cuts to Social Security and Medicare, calling them "not fair" to workers. On immigration, Kasich and Bush have used less offensive language than Donald Trump, but both - and the rest of the leading Republican candidates - oppose President Obama's policies that protect DREAMers and families from deportation. Neither Bush nor Kasich nor any leading Republican candidate supports comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship, even though that's a commonsense policy that would enable undocumented immigrants to come out of the shadows, stay with their families, and contribute to the American economy.
Kasich and Bush have reiterated time and again that their economic experience would make them ideal presidential candidates. The extreme GOP base might like those policies, but the fact is, they've made it more difficult for working class families to get ahead. After accounting for inflation, the average Ohio household earned less in 2013 than it did in 1984. Kasich's 2015 budget cut taxes by only $24 for middle-class Ohioans, raised taxes by $20 for taxpayers in the lowest income bracket, yet included a $10,000 tax cut for the wealthiest Ohioans. Bush keeps trumpeting his tenure as governor, but as the Washington Post reported, "Florida owed a substantial portion of its growth under Bush not to any state policies but to a massive and unsustainable housing bubble -- one that ultimately benefited rich investors at the expense of middle-class families." Bush also provided tax cuts to the wealthiest Floridians while cutting funding for essential programs for senior citizens and children. Kasich and Bush's failed economic policies are par for the course for Republican candidates: Bobby Jindal and Chris Christie have both been hammered for their states' economic woes.
Far-right policy positions defined the gubernatorial terms of Bush and Kasich. Now that they're running for president, we can't let them run from their records. Bush and Kasich's extreme agendas are in line with every single other Republican candidate that was on stage during the first debate.
Randy Borntrager lives in Ohio and is the political director of People For the American Way, D.C.-based progressive advocacy organization. He has previously served as chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy and the communications director and interim executive director of the Ohio Democratic Party.
If you are a presidential candidate, you spend a lot of time talking to people in Iowa. And if you’re a Republican, that means a lot of time on Iowa conservative radio, including popular programs hosted by right-wing activists Steve Deace and Jan Mickelson.
The fact that Deace and Mickelson have long histories of extreme rhetoric has not dissuaded Republican candidates from joining their shows. But Mickelson just upped the ante with comments he made on his program today.
Media Matters caught Mickelson proposing that undocumented immigrants in Iowa become “property of the state” and pressed into hard labor. When a listener called in to point out that Mickelson’s proposal “sounds like slavery,” Mickelson asked, “Well, what’s wrong with slavery?” Undocumented immigrants, he went on to say, are the ones who are enslaving American citizens:
It will be interesting to see if any of the GOP candidates who have been on Mickelson’s radio program recently — which, according to Media Matters’ count, includes Rand Paul, Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, Lindsey Graham, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, Rick Santorum and Bobby Jindal — repudiate his remarks.
But the fact is that if these candidates were concerned about Mickelson’s rhetoric, they should have stopped going on his show long ago.
And just last week, Mickelson was getting Rep. Steve King to entertain the conspiracy theory that a botched EPA mine cleanup in Colorado was a deliberate plan to pollute a river to create a Superfund site:
Republican candidates may try to avoid Mickelson’s show after today. But given their track record, we somehow doubt that they will.
The television station KPHO captured part of the exchange, in which reporter Dennis Welch, apparently responding to an earlier comment from Carson, says that “drone strikes on American soil seems a little over the top, even to entertain that idea.”
“You can entertain all kinds of things,” Carson responds. “Here’s the take-home point: The take-home point is that we have excellent military leaders and we need to employ their expertise because this is a war we are fighting. That’s the bottom line."
Welch also tweeted that Carson said the drone strikes could go after “caves and things” on the southern border:
More from @RealBenCarson on border issues: "You look at some of these caves and things out there one drone strike, boom, and they'd gone."
In an interview with the Catholic television network EWTN last week, Sen. Rand Paul said that the main problem that must be addressed in the immigration debate is that we have “almost defeated the work ethic in our country” and “we’ve destroyed the ethic of work in so much of our population.”
But he added that immigration is a “two-fold problem” because “we’re rotting from the inside” thanks to unspecified “people” who lack a work ethic.
“We also have almost defeated the work ethic in our country,” he said. “And so, for like picking crops, hard work, if we didn’t bring in migrant labor, we’re rotting from the inside. We have people who really — we’ve destroyed the ethic of work in so much of our population.”