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Price of Bigotry is Big Government


The national debate over Immigration reform is, in the words of CNN’s Wolf Blitzer – a man not prone to understatement – “widening a crack within the Republican Party.” He’s only slightly exaggerating. Because unless Republicans come to their senses and stop tearing each other – and Immigration Reform itself – apart the Grand Old Party may learn that the wages of bigotry is, in fact, big government.

Before sending me off to college on the East Coast, my father told me to know what I believe in and apply those principles religiously. Well, what I’ve come to realize is that I kneel at the church of limited government.

Generally, I have applied this philosophy in approaching the immigration debate. That’s led me to support proposals which would allow for people already here to gain the right to work and perhaps, over time, to earn citizenship. But what gets me sounding like a right-wing member of Congress is when it comes to the provision of government services to illegal immigrants. It almost makes me want to type the words in all-caps…ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS!!!…just to get it out of my system.

Take for example the case of Antonio Villaraigosa, the Democratic Mayor of Los Angeles. He wants to put a $1 billion bond on the November 2006 ballot to build affordable housing. If you’ve tried finding a place to live in Los Angeles, you know that we need to do something for working people who make less than six digits, and the plan to subsidize private development of affordable housing makes sense.

Well, an Affordable Housing bond makes sense until you realize that Fair Housing Laws prevent discrimination on the basis of someone’s legal status—which means that the City of Los Angeles is asking voters to raise their own taxes in order to give cheap housing to ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS!!! It’s not that I have anything against immigrants – it’s that I object to our country opening up my wallet to redistribute wealth to just about anyone who comes across the border.

I think most Republicans – and if the 1994 vote on Proposition 187 was any indication, most Americans – find something offensive about the idea cross-border carpet-bagging freeloaders. Come here and work, and we’re fine with immigrants. But come to suckle off the government dole and there’s a problem.

Republicans have gone astray in attacking the wrong head of this two-headed monster. Instead of trying to go after big government, Republicans in Congress are attacking the immigrants…and in the process, making Government even bigger.

Just this week, on the floor of the United States Senate, two Republicans proposed raising taxes by eliminating the Earned Income Tax Credit for immigrant workers. That’s just the latest. Proposals to secure the border only create more government bureaucracy, and the crackdown on employers who hire ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS will only burden an economy that is shaking of the post 9-11 recession.

Higher taxes, bloated bureaucracy and economic stagnation are the cost some Republicans seem willing to pay for their attacks on immigrants – but I have to wonder if people wouldn’t mind welcoming migrant workers into our country so much if, instead, we started slaying the beast that is Big Government.

Share  Posted by Scott Olin Schmidt at 8:38 AM | Permalink

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