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Does this Mean Most Republicans Are Now ‘Wacko Birds’ Too?
Yesterday, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) made clear that ending DACA was his “top priority” and that eviscerating deportation protections for Dreamers must be a component piece of any congressional action dealing with the Central American child refugees. Far from a “wacko bird,” to borrow Senator John McCain’s characterization of Senator Cruz, his position on ending DACA and deporting Dreamers is now the Republican mainstream stance.
Even though Cruz is the leading conservative provocateur in the Senate, he is well within the mainstream of the GOP in raising concerns over the 2012 program. Critics say the White House provoked the crisis by giving undocumented children false hope they can live in the country without fear of deportation.
That critique was discussed at length at a closed-door Senate GOP lunch on Wednesday, with Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) making a presentation to her colleagues on the situation, senators said. According to a chart the moderate senator distributed to her colleagues, apprehensions of children from El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico have more than doubled since the directive was issued two years ago.
That policy applies only to certain undocumented immigrants who arrived to the United States as young people and who have resided continuously in the country from 2007.
After the briefing, South Dakota Sen. John Thune, the No. 3 in GOP leadership, seemed open to the Cruz idea to gut the administration’s 2012 program in exchange for border funds.
“People are discussing the wisdom of that being part of the solution,” Thune said. “Reversing that decision is going to be pretty fundamental to changing the … message that we’re sending to some of those countries.”
Also joining Sen. Cruz in blaming DACA, directly or indirectly, is a wide swath of the Republican Party:
Perhaps Senator Cruz – and the GOPers who are parroting his position – should heed the Senator’s own political analysis. Shortly after the 2012 elections, Senator Cruz told Ryan Lizza of The New Yorker:
If Republicans do not do better in the Hispanic community, in a few short years Republicans will no longer be the majority party in our state…If that happens, no Republican will ever again win the White House…The Republican Party would cease to exist. We would become like the Whig Party. Our kids and grandkids would study how this used to be a national political party. “They had Conventions, they nominated Presidential candidates. They don’t exist anymore.”
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
Senator Cruz has declared war on Dreamers, who are Americans in all but paperwork. Good luck with that, Senator. He and others in the GOP seem to believe that a Presidential action in June 2012 on behalf of long-established young people who arrived in the U.S. before June 2007 spurred an exodus of young people from three specific Central American countries in June 2014. Good luck explaining to Latino voters how it is sensible or just to use the occasion of an 8-year old fleeing violence and arriving at our border as rationale for trying to deport a 20-year old college student who’s been living here for a decade.