Home | About | Donate

Have Democrats Forgotten About This Summer's Immigration Debacle?

Have Democrats Forgotten About This Summer's Immigration Debacle?

Sonali Kolhatkar

The controversy over President Donald Trump’s immigrant family separation policy this summer made major headlines for weeks, generated mass protests in Washington, D.C., and in cities around the country, and fomented “occupations” in front of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) offices, calling for the abolishment of the agency.

This is probably the toughest issue for Democrats and it is Trump’s main issue for getting white supremacists stirred up to vote. The Democrats are afraid to give the Republican any ammunition to get their supporters angry enough to increase the turnout on the right. The Democrats main weapon to stop the fascist takeover of the US is elections but it isn’t easy increasing their turnout without at the same time increasing the turnout on the fascist site. The Democrats could of course direct their messages more to their base but the Republicans would also use that to their advantage.

The trends that I see, among Democrats, are setting up Donald Trump for a huge victory on the immigration issue.

Some right leaning Democrats, in the Party power structure, are pushing for strict immigration policy/practice.

Some moderates are calling for less harsh treatment of unauthorized immigrants in the US.

Finally, there are some more progressive that are calling for a reform of US immigration policy.

No Democrats are pushing for addressing the root causes of immigration from Latin America through measures such as:

  • Reparations for the victims of US corporate and imperial practices in Latin America.
  • Large scale economic support to rebuild local economies devastated by US corporate and military oppression.
  • Ongoing support for local community based initiatives working to ensure that vulnerable populations are safe, and able to find pathways towards quality lives.

I expect that the Brett Kavanough debacle has taught Donald Trump that, when he takes extremely harsh right wing positions, his base grows and is energized. It is very likely that, as the midterm elections approach, Trump will take some extreme measures - such as sending military to the border and/or separating families. My sense is that, such effort will lead to greater electoral victories for Republicans in the midterms.


Hmmm I just thought about what has been said… that America destroys the nations and the people immigrate here… So taking that popular movie, “Field of Dreams, " " if we build it they will come,” now morphs into: If WE Bomb them, they will come." So wake up government-----no matter where we bomb, people are on the move. Here comes Honduras now!

I no longer blame their elites. I blame their voters. They’ve had a ton of masks dropped and exposed the last few years and have ignored them all, favoring their default position of comfortable inertia. I assume at this point that if you’re a democrat, you’re my political and social enemy, and that you want this nightmare to continue for the people in my class that suffer terribly in it. Corporatism has been good to them, so they defend it.

Radicals and other leftists need to stop assuming that Democrats are just stupid or ignorant or watch too much Maddow. There’s a point at which you have to assume they’re on board with the project.

If there are any, they aren’t getting any purchase in the press or by the party heads. I agree with all your points - they should be a significant arm of any immigration platform along with (in my opinion) strict enforcement of US work visa laws.

In a perfect world, every inhabitant could visit and move for work to any other place in the world. We aren’t remotely in that world yet and advocating for open borders now isn’t going to get us to that world any faster and is definitely energizing Republican voters. I don’t think it is foolish to take this into account when formulating a platform and a conversational strategy on that platform. There are a lot of caveats in this issue. I think a majority of independents and a significant minority of Republicans don’t believe in the extreme Trump branded solution. Our solution doesn’t have to appease Trump Republicans - but it has to be rational, researched, ethical, and resistant to attacks from the right. And it should be cognizant of the fact that workers who don’t have visas do have impacts on valid workers (including many immigrant workers) that cannot be ignored.

Given Obrador has made statements about the desire to help refugees from other countries have a life in Mexico (which obviously makes more sense - they would be closer to home if things ever return to normal, and there is no language issue), we should be pushing the co-operative line quite a bit. Which party is going to have a better relationship with Obrador in helping to address this issue? On one hand, the US being so distracted by the Middle East has been good for the South (though we still have resources to plan coups), but if we can paint an actual success story with Mexico, that would do a lot to ensure the Trump wing is pushed way down to a level we can move forward on all the things we need to move forward on (climate change being a big one).

1 Like

With one outrage after another, I think people are becoming numb.

1 Like