Title 42 Needs to Go Away

David Thornton

David Thornton is a freelance writer and professional pilot who has also lived in Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia and Emmanuel College. He is Christian conservative/libertarian who was fortunate enough to have seen Ronald Reagan in person during his formative years. A former contributor to The Resurgent, David now writes for the Racket News with fellow Resurgent alum, Steve Berman, and his personal blog, CaptainKudzu. He currently lives with his wife and daughter near Columbus, Georgia. His son is serving in the US Air Force. You can find him on Twitter @CaptainKudzu and Facebook.

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8 Responses

  1. Philip H says:

    Congress needs to act to fix our broken immigration system. This fix should have four main parts: Border security, visa tracking to prevent overstays, a streamlined immigration system so it doesn’t take decades to immigrate legally, and a pathway to legalization (not necessarily citizenship) for illegal immigrants who are already here and are productive members of society. I’m also open to a guest worker program for people who want to come here to work but don’t necessarily want to relocate here permanently.

    This is a very reasonable proposal that most Democrats would support.Report

    • Burt Likko in reply to Philip H says:

      Yes, although I’m wary of what “border security” looks like for Republicans, because I’ve noticed that’s a code phrase for “building a moat from San Ysidro all the way to South Padre Island and then stocking that moat with hungry rabid crocodiles armed with frickin’ laser beams and then building a thirty-foot high curtain wall with palisades and electrified concertina wire and then densely manning that wall sharpshooters behind the moat and not having any gates or highways actually go through the wall or over the moat” which I strongly suspect is not what most Republicans would actually want in practice but does seem to be the minimum threshold level of border security that their chosen elected representatives would request.

      In fact, I think border security is at least as much about what happens in the international terminals of airports as it is at border crossings, but saying something like that apparently means I’m in favor of open borders.

      With that out of the way, yes, absolutely, this is a potentially reasonable set of planks for an immigration reform policy and I’d be very happy to see Dems and Reps sitting down to manner out the details of it.Report

      • Chip Daniels in reply to Burt Likko says:

        But that’s yet another instance where no one, absolutely no one is *actually* suggesting this.

        Because no matter how rigid or extreme their border security ideas are, there is always, always, an asterisk caveat *Except for when I may need to take advantage of this*.

        Meaning, the *actual* border hawk position is “Lets establish a permanent subclass of non-persons without rights who will silently perform work for free then disappear when not needed”.Report

  2. North says:

    Immigration remains an intractable problem here because the various actor groups, with one sole exception, are mostly content with the status quos.
    From left to right they are:
    -The Far Left: Would like open borders and safety net benefits for immigrants but it prefers the current state of that, as a practical matter, lets limitless numbers of refugees and migrants in to a functional alternative that would prevent this.
    -The center Left: Just can’t get exercised about immigration in general. They’re good for the economy and good for well off center leftists. This group is also influenced by the business class and the business class likes the current state of affairs.
    -The centrists and the capitalist business class: LOVES the status quos: large quantities of workers they can use and the sick ICE on if they get uppity about any element of their jobs? It’s a Randian paradise. They never want it to change.
    -The center right: what remains of it makes their bread and butter off demagoguing about immigration. They sure as heck don’t want the issue gone and the business class who hold their leashes have little interest in reforming it. Oh and tax cuts.
    -The populist right: Genuinely dislikes the state of affairs and wants it changed. But, ya know, they like cheap labour and cheap produce and cheap construction and they prefer not to think about the ramifications of what happens if all that expendable labor was gone. Surely if the immigrants were gone then my layabout grandkids could get a job paying 40 bucks an hour picking tomatoes over summer to fill in the gap and that wouldn’t effect my grocery prices at all! *eyeroll*.
    -The libertarians: Open borders, yo, but the number of genuine libertarians are vanishingly small and a lot of the ostensible libertarians are actually nativist sock puppets so they just sort of talk about open borders the way the far left talks about abolishing the police.

    The only way I see this circle getting squared is one of two ways:
    -From the left a major centrist/left administration gets the trifecta and either rams through an immigration bill along Davids lines in order to eleminate it as a weapon for their opponents (and to, ya know, maybe improve the problem). The right calls them evil and the left calls them racist.
    -From the right: some kind of generational right wing politician actually marshals populist rage and implements some kind of enforcement of employment verification (SWIFT on steroids’) option married with seriously toothy penalties (prison and fines) against businesses and individuals that employ undocumented immigrants. That “fixes” immigration but causes an epic labor shortage and either legal immigration is increased enormously, or we go into an incredible recession until the admin gets landslided out or a tech miracle replaces much of that labor with robots.

    But, yeah, I suspect I won’t live to see this substantively changed.Report

    • Philip H in reply to North says:

      The center left, centrists and center right appear to constitute the majority of voters. David’s proposal would seem to meet most of their needs.Report

      • North in reply to Philip H says:

        I would guess that they do Philip, yes- agreed, but there are a couple of confounding factors:
        -The center right doesn’t want to cooperate with the center left on immigration. They get votes off of demagoguery on the issue and money from the business interest who prefer the status quos. I think they could realistically expect to be in exile for an electoral cycle at least if they were seen participating.
        -The far-left punches above its weight in the media and elite Democratic apparati. As I recall, during the 2020 primary many of the candidates hewed to the far-left line on immigration except for Biden and other candidates in his lane (I think Buttigieg and Klobuchar were closer to Biden on this but I have some vague recollection that they appeared further to his left on it during the debates).

        If I had to guess, I’d say an immigration reform bill would be something a center left wing politician wouldn’t explicitly campaign on. It’d have to be opportunistic. From the Center right it’d have to be a fishin’ miracle.Report