Update: Some national Tea Party groups are coming out for AMNESTY, Freedom Works is one, I wrote about it here at my other blog. Freedom Works and Americans for Prosperity do not speak for the majority of Tea Party-minded grassroots.
Before you dismiss this headline as a story about one more squishy and frightened Republican figuring that pandering to illegal Hispanics will get him somewhere in electoral politics, please read it here at Politico.
Paul’s proposal has implications for Refugee Resettlement, Temporary Protected Status, the Diversity Visa lottery and a whole host of other LEGAL immigration programs.
First readers need to know that there are all sorts of people calling themselves Tea Party (including that Islam apologist Grover Norquist). There are also Ron Paul Libertarians who link up from time to time with Conservative Tea Partiers and have some issues in common. Both strains believe in smaller government and thus lower taxes as a common theme. On some other issues the differences are significant.
Politico sets the stage:
He’ll push to loosen marijuana penalties, legalize undocumented immigrants and pursue a less aggressive American foreign policy.
In the wake of Barack Obama’s reelection win and ahead of a possible 2016 White House bid of his own, the Kentucky Republican plans to mix his hard-line tea party conservatism with more moderate policies that could woo younger voters and minorities largely absent from the GOP coalition. It’s the latest tactic of the freshman senator to inject the Libertarian-minded views shared by his retiring father into mainstream Republican thinking as the party grapples with its future.
In an interview with POLITICO, Paul said he’ll return to Congress this week pushing measures long avoided by his party. He wants to work with liberal Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy and Republicans to eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for pot possession. He wants to carve a compromise immigration plan with an “eventual path” to citizenship for illegal immigrants, a proposal he believes could be palatable to conservatives. And he believes his ideas — along with pushing for less U.S. military intervention in conflicts overseas — could help the GOP broaden its tent and appeal to crucial voting blocs that handed Democrats big wins in the West Coast, the Northeast and along the Great Lakes.
Paul says to “assimilate” the Hispanics here illegally already, but demand a trade-off.
The trade-off—-stop all LEGAL immigration until the illegals are assimilated!
Paul plans to inject himself into the middle of the GOP’s emotional immigration debate in the wake of Romney losing swing states with heavy Latino populations like Florida, Colorado and Nevada. Paul is working on a novel plan that he says would “assimilate” many of the 12 million illegal immigrants currently in the country. Those individuals, he said, could apply for legal status, but immigration would then be clamped down in the interim. He also says his plan would toughen security at the border.
“I want to show what conservatives would or can accept,” he said in describing his plan. “If we assimilate those who are here, however they got here — don’t make it an easy path for citizenship. There would be an eventual path, but we don’t make anybody tomorrow a citizen who came here illegally. But if they’re willing to work, willing to pay taxes, I think we need to normalize those who are here.”
Paul said the “trade-off” would be “not to accept any new legal immigrants while we’re assimilating the ones who are here.” Asked if he is concerned about the ripple effect that could cause around the world, Paul said the details over which countries would be affected are still in the works. [Senator Paul, I’ll help you identify those countries!—ed]
Paul has also been a leader in attempts to cut foreign aid—a bread and butter issue if there ever was one for many of the so-called non-profits involved around the world.
(Can you hear it? The wailing and gnashing of teeth from the refugee industry?)
Longtime readers might recall that Senator Paul had a hissy-fit of sorts when he found out Iraqi terrorists had been resettled in his home state of Kentucky here last year.