The immigration reform community got two wonderful Christmas presents last December.
The first was H.R. 4437 wherein a bipartisan majority attached a string of strongly worded amendments to help enforce existing immigration laws and to move closer to ending illegal immigration. Read the details here. (And Juan Mann's reservations here.)
The second—and this is almost too good to be true—is that Mexico's president Vicente Fox hired Dallas public relations shill Rob Allyn to improve the country's image in the United States.
Believe me, anything that keeps the issue of Mexican illegal immigration in the spotlight is great for us. And if Allyn wants to do our legwork for the $720,000 chump change fee Mexico will pay him, I say, "Have at it."
(Aside to Allyn: If I were you I would insist on my money in advance because this is an assignment no one can pull off.)
Allyn will soon find that smooth talking the American people into believing that the current U.S./Mexico relationship benefits the average citizen will be tough sledding.
According to news reports, Allyn gained his Mexican expertise in 2000 when he helped Fox win the presidency.
But this is the United States, 2006. And the subject is not whether Fox should wear cowboy boots or oxfords to maximize his voter appeal. We're talking endless, unchecked illegal immigration.
New York Times reporter Simon Romero unveiled Allyn's three-step plan that:
"Calls for him to represent Mexico in the United States in meetings with nongovernmental organizations; through polling and organizing tours of Mexican officials; and potentially with a small amount of advertising." [Republican Strategist is Taking Heat for Taking Mexico as a Client, Simon Romero, New York Times, December 28, 2005]
That's strike one, strike two and strike three!
Here follow what I view as Allyn's five insurmountable hurdles:
1) Illegal immigration is from coast to coast the United States' number one topic. The Internet, talk radio, cable television, and some newspapers hammer at illegal immigration's consequences from dawn to dusk. Everyday the Center for Immigration Studies distributes its daily summary of nationwide newspaper stories about immigration. On average, there are 25 each day. Fridays the Center mails out its weekly summary of immigration editorials, an average of 35. Not all the stories and editorials are in sync with our position. But they provide considerable information to an increasingly skeptical reading public.
2) While many Americans are sympathetic to the plight of immigrants, most feel that Washington has ignored legal and illegal immigration for too long. The result— massive, uncontrolled immigration— has made citizens anxious for limits. (See the C.I.S. report, "Last Five Years Highest Immigration in History: Illegal Aliens Are Almost Half of New Arrivals.")
3) Illegal immigrants are not hard done by in the U.S., despite ceaseless whining by Fox to the contrary. Not only do many get jobs that the corrupt Mexican government refuses to create, illegal immigrants put their children into taxpayer-funded schools and universities, qualify for home mortgages, bear American citizen children and qualify, in most cases, for health care services.
4) Not all illegal aliens "just come to work." In Texas, Allyn's home state, the most wanted gang members are Quesada, Rodriguez, Esqueda, Ortegon (Alfredo), Ortegon (Armando), Lemus, Galvan, Alejandro, Garcia and Mata. The Texas Mexican Mafia has a similar profile.
5) Mexico, Allyn's client, is not credible. Even high-ranking Mexicans are forced to admit that its government, as represented by President Fox, is hypocritical. Two prominent Mexican officials from its Human Rights Commission acknowledged that in dealing with illegal migrants, the Mexico uses some of the same methods it has criticized the United States for employing. Commission president Jose Luis Soberanes admitted that:
"One of the saddest national failings on immigration issues is the contradiction in demanding that the North [the U.S.] respect migrants' rights, which we are not capable of guaranteeing in the South." (i.e. along Mexico's Guatemala border).
Added Mauricio Farah, a national inspector for the rights commission:
"As a matter of fact, [Mexico's] population law does include prison terms for illegally entering the country... and this is something that has been the subject of constant complaints." (PR Guru Allyn Draws Flack on Mexico, Laurence Iliff, Dallas Morning News, December 22, 2005)
These are hard times for open borders fans. Having had their own way for 35 years, they're not used to losing.
But nothing lasts forever. And that's what has happened regarding immigration reform. The pendulum has finally swung, irreversibly, I believe, toward common sense.
Mexico can hire whoever it wants to tout its self-serving position. But what Mexico—and Allyn (e-mail him)— ultimately has to come to terms with is that it will no longer be able to steamroll the U.S. Congress.
And—more bad news for Mexico—look for things to get tougher in 2006 as Congressional candidates respond to their constituents demands for even tougher immigration laws.
Fellows, time to suck it up!
Joe Guzzardi [email him], an instructor in English at the Lodi Adult School, has been writing a weekly newspaper column since 1988. This column is exclusive to VDARE.COM.