With his victory in Florida, John McCain has become the frontrunner for the Republican nomination. Even though McCain's campaign was earlier almost derailed solely for his support for the Kennedy-Bush amnesty and only recovered when he began to pose as an immigration hardliner, his potential success will certainly be used as evidence that Republican voters are not really against amnesty. If McCain gets the nomination, the open borders lobby will get to see what Hispandering does for the Republican Party.
When the late Sam Francis was in a symposium at the American Cause entitled "Will Mass Immigration Kill the GOP," he answered, "I sure hope so." Francis, of course, developed the term "The Stupid Party" to describe the institution in which he spent most of his life. I'm sure many VDARE.COM readers share his sentiments. But like Francis, they also recognize that immigration will have dramatic effects on the American political system.
If politicians have one instinct, it is for survival. They may not care about saving the nation, but some may inadvertently do the right thing to save their career. Accordingly, ideologues, business interests, ethnic activists, and high-paid Hispanic political and media consultants—of both parties—who wish to make the Republican Party run lockstep with La Raza have continuously spread the myth that Republicans need Hispanics to win. They also claim that Hispanics are "natural Republicans" who will support the GOP if we only rid the party of mean-spirited bigots like Tom Tancredo and Pat Buchanan.
This tired propaganda with some new snake oil is synthesized in Leslie Sanchez's book Los Republicanos: Why Hispanics and Republicans Need Each Other. Sanchez is a blonde-haired Latino who runs a media consulting group for the Hispanic market. Accordingly, the book reads like a (bad) sales pitch.
Politics aside, it is painful to read. The book is full of cheesy personal stories and chapter titles like "Reaganismo." There are many glaring factual errors—to name a few, it says that the Immigration Reform Caucus has 67 members (it has over 100) and that Proposition 187 was passed in 1987 (it was passed in 1994.)
Any Open Borders book is going to have many logical contradictions. But even the trite and corny one-liners in Los Republicanos contradict themselves. For example, the book opens with Ms. Sanchez joking that it is bad stereotype to say that all Latinos have images of La Virgen hanging from their rear view mirror. A few chapters later she says that these images demonstrate their deep Catholic faith and, accordingly, "family values."
This is not to distract from the dangerous and just plain wrong message of the book. As the subtitle would suggest, Los Republicanos focuses on both why Hispanics are necessary for the GOP to be a viable party, and why the GOP's message will appeal to Hispanics.
The section on why Hispanics need the GOP is full of the usual nonsense about Hispanic family values and their entrepreneurial spirit. Sanchez goes a step further make new and even more absurd, counterfactual and even comical arguments than the typical open borders myths.
Sanchez admits that Hispanics have high rates of various social pathologies. But, amazingly, she tries to turn this into a good thing. She uses the fact that Hispanics drop out of high school at a disproportionate rate as a reason why they will support No Child Left Behind and vouchers! She acknowledges that Hispanics have high teen pregnancy and illegitimacy rates—but then gushes about how they are more likely to think that births should be in wedlock.
Another liability that she sees as an asset is the fact that there are many Hispanic professional associations. Sanchez claims this evidence of the rising upward mobility of Hispanic, which will presumably make them vote Republican. A more realistic view would show that even when Hispanics succeed, they still isolate themselves. In any case, these groups' main function is to lobby for racial preferences rather than serve any conservative ideas.
Sanchez even manages to argue that not paying taxes will make Hispanics good Republican. She writes: "One third of Hispanic businesses don't know they have to pay taxes: They actually believe they can avoid federal taxes by sending their money home to Mexico." And this is good because as "more Latino business owners are educated about the real impact of the high taxes Democrats want them to pay, there's no doubt they will respond politically".
She points to a poll that shows that 79% of Hispanic business owners think they are overtaxed. (Presumably, at least 12% of those owners think nothing is too much.)
The low tax philosophy doesn't end at marginal tax rates, Sanchez argues Hispanics will also want to eliminate the estate tax. Currently there is an exemption for up to two million dollars before the estate tax kicks in. But the median net worth of Hispanic households is less than $8,000 dollars—9% of white households. [http://pewhispanic.org/reports/report.php?ReportID=34]No matter to Sanchez. She ignores this and the fact that Hispanics have failed to raise their socio-economic status at the rates of past immigrant groups to assert that Latinos "are starting more businesses than any other groups, and so we will be the ones most likely to leave estates large enough" to be taxed.
Of course, even if Hispanics are disproportionately starting businesses (which they aren't), unless every fruit and taco stand owner—who may or not be paying taxes—gets franchised by venture capitalists, it's unlikely that most Hispanic "entrepreneurs" will be leaving multi million dollar estates.
The arguments about taxes are especially specious, because despite showing many polls by Hispanics complaining that their taxes are too high, she shows no evidence that they think there should be spending cuts, or that those richer than them should get lower taxes.
Most "Hispanics are natural Republicans" arguments at least limit themselves to a few issues like abortion and education. Sanchez, however, manages to apply it to virtually every pet cause of the Republican Establishment. For example, she gives a long discussion on the virtues of missile defense without any discussion of how this relates to Hispanic voting patterns until the last sentence—where she merely asserts they care about national security.
The rest of Sanchez' proof that Hispanics are natural Republicans comes from their answering generic poll questions about whether it is better to be on welfare or working, whether they pay too many taxes, or if illegal drugs are a problem and discipline is a problem in schools. Of course these are answers that virtually every American regardless of race or political orientation would agree with.
Sanchez' case for why the GOP needs Hispanic voters doesn't fare much better. Much of this section repeats the usual myths: Prop 187 has done great damage to the Republican Party; Tom Tancredo and Pat Buchanan are racists scaring off conservative Hispanics; George Bush was elected in 2004 due to his great inroads among Hispanic voters; the Republicans lost in 2006 due to their xenophobic opposition to amnesty. Again, VDARE.COM readers have seen these claims refuted over and over again.
Yet Sanchez also manages to make many new and outrageous assertions. For example: her discussion of "Southern Newbies." One way to explain away the overwhelmingly liberal voting patterns of Hispanics is to play up the fact that they settle in already-Democratic areas and may just vote accordingly, rather than a result of their ethnic solidarity. Contra Teddy Roosevelt, Sanchez proclaims "we're all hyphenated Americans, but we're also Texans, Hoosiers, New Yorkers, Yankees, and Southerners."
But even if this were true, it wouldn't make much of a political difference. Jews in the South have always been more conservative than those in New York. But because most Jews are from New York, they still vote overwhelmingly for the Left.
That aside, Sanchez fails to give any reason to suggest Hispanics in the South will vote Republican. Not only does she fail to give any substantive information on voting patterns, she doesn't even give any anecdotal stories of Mexicans drinking sweet tea, listening to country music, or going to college football games and NASCAR races. In fact, between all the fluff, her only actual argument is that Hispanics cause urban sprawl and the exurbs tend to be Republican.
Sanchez' case study of the New Latino South is Greeenville, South Carolina, which is rapidly changing due to mass immigration. She writes that South Carolina's solidly Republican majority is dependent upon the ability of the GOP to attract Hispanic voters, due to the large black and rising Hispanic population.
South Carolina has always had a large black population. Since the Southern realignment, blacks have solidly voted Democratic. Of course, there are still more whites than blacks in the state. And because they vote in a block, the state is dependably Republican. Conclusion: if it were not for Hispanic immigrants, the GOP would have absolutely no problems in the South.
Sanchez touts Greenville Congressman Bob Inglis as a great Hispanic-friendly politician. Inglis was one of the few House Republicans to support Bush's amnesty and gives lectures instructing his citizens to welcome the Hispanicization of their hometowns. Yet Sanchez fails to explain how this helps Inglis's political prospects in any way. In fact, she acknowledges that he will likely face a primary challenger due to his support of amnesty—and that the local Hispanic press still attacks him for not being Open Borders enough!
The picture Sanchez paints is contradictory enough, but she leaves out a number of other facts that bode ill for open borders politicians in South Carolina. Lindsey Graham has been censured by the GOP chapter in Greenville and may soon be in Spartanburg for his support of the Kennedy-Bush-McCain amnesty. Greenville was the site of the largest anti-amnesty demonstrations in the country. Sanchez also fails to mention Inglis's neighboring Congressman, Gresham Barrett, who represents an area with similar demographics, but has the best voting record on immigration in Congress. Instead of facing a primary challenger, Barrett is being touted as the next governor of South Carolina.
If Los Republicanos were merely the self-interested logrolling of one Hispanic media consultant, it would be like Plan 9 from Outer Space—something so bad it is moderately amusing. Unfortunately many of the far left, anti-American views expressed in this book are expressed by ostensibly conservative politicians. Thus Rep. Inglis recounts to Sanchez how he was attacked by a politically incorrect constituent who opposed miscegenation and stated "This is a white country." Inglis regales Sanchez by quoting his black aide who said "This is Tancredo and Buchanan in their fullness."
Similarly, Republican Congressman Tom Cole of Oklahoma tells her that he tells his restrictionist colleagues "I'm a member of the Chickasaw Nation, and as far as I'm concerned, you're an illegal!" John McCain, Newt Gingrich and (significantly) Mitt Romney endorsed the book with enthusiastic blurbs about the merits of Hispandering.
Many immigration reformers correctly point out that large numbers of patriotic Hispanics support immigration control. Yet that number is always much lower than the rates of white, or for that matter African American, voters. It will no doubt decline when amnestied illegal aliens become US citizens.
Support for patriotic immigration reform is a winning strategy now. But there is a point, if nothing is done, when all political parties will have to accede to the Hispanic agenda. This does not mean merely supporting open borders, but also abandoning conservative policies across the board, because Hispanics will reject them just as they do in their home countries.
What really matters is not whether the Republican Party survive mass immigration—but whether the United States will.
Marcus Epstein [send him mail] is the founder of the Robert A Taft Club and the executive director of the The American Cause and Team America PAC. A selection of his articles can be seen here. The views he expresses are his own.