As usual, Peggy Noonan cuts to the heart of the immigration issue:
The disinterest in the White House and among congressional Republicans in establishing authority on America’s borders is so amazing–the people want it, the age of terror demands it–that great histories will be written about it. Thinking about this has left me contemplating a question that admittedly seems farfetched: Is it possible our flinty president is so committed to protecting the Republican Party from losing, forever, the Hispanic vote, that he’s decided to take a blurred and unsatisfying stand on immigration, and sacrifice all personal popularity, in order to keep the party of the future electorally competitive with a growing ethnic group?
This would, I admit, be rather unlike an American political professional. And it speaks of a long-term thinking that has not been the hallmark of this administration. But at least it would render explicable the president’s moves.
The other possibility is that the administration’s slow and ambivalent action is the result of being lost in some geopolitical-globalist abstract-athon that has left them puffed with the rightness of their superior knowledge, sure in their membership in a higher brotherhood, and looking down on the low concerns of normal Americans living in America.
I continue to believe the administration’s problem is not that the base lately doesn’t like it, but that the White House has decided it actually doesn’t like the base. That’s a worse problem. It’s hard to fire a base. Hard to get a new one.