President Obama can’t let go of his bad habit of blaming all of his misfortune on others. Recently in a White House roundtable intended to target Hispanic voters, Obama once again blamed Congressional Republicans for standing in his way of passing comprehensive immigration reform. In an Associated Press story about the meeting, Obama said "This notion that somehow I can just change the laws unilaterally is just not true." [Frustrated Obama Says He Can’t Change the Immigration System Alone, by Julie Pace, Associated Press, September 28, 2011]
According to Obama, a few years ago Republicans were lined up with Democrats to "fix our immigration system" but right now the party doesn’t have "that kind of leadership."
"I think there's been a great disservice done to the cause of getting a Dream Act passed and getting comprehensive immigration passed by perpetrating the notion that somehow by myself I can go and do these things. We have to pass bills through the legislature and then I can sign it."
These statements, as we know, are bold faced lies. In August, Obama initiated a selective system that circumvents the Constitution and will release thousands of aliens from deportation proceedings.
Obama also misled his audience about where the Republicans who supported comprehensive immigration reform went. In representative government, legislators who aren’t in line with their constituents wishes get voted out and replaced by those who do. In the 2010 mid-term elections, anti-enforcement, pro-amnesty candidates from both parties got swept out of office.
A few weeks ago, former Clinton advisor James Carville advised Obama to completely change his game plan. Whatever he’s been doing, stop doing it and replace it with a new approach. [What Should the White House Do? Panic!, by James Carville, CNN Political News, September 18, 2011]
Obama should apply Carville’s wisdom to his immigration policy. Stop pandering. Instead, consider saying to Hispanic lobbyists something like this:
“I can’t help you on the DREAM Act. The American majority has repeatedly rejected it. Congress isn’t going to pass comprehensive immigration reform. You can hold it against me if you want. But if you don’t vote for me in 2012, then the odds are great that the Republicans will control Congress and the White House. And if you think things are tough for you now, just wait until that happens.”
Hispanics have threatened to stay away from the voting booth unless they get their way. But in no way would Hispanics benefit in an Obama-less White House. All of Obama’s solicitousness toward that voting bloc has gotten him nowhere. In her story cited above, reporter Pace wrote that Obama is “facing weakening support among Hispanics”. And for moderate voters from both parties, Obama has dropped off the radar.
Plain talk, especially about immigration, would be a refreshing novelty in presidential politics. Since Obama is unlikely to do it, maybe one of the aspiring Republicans will.