Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Immigration politics

Yesterday the political pundits were speculating that Democrats will move Congressional consideration of immigration reform to the front of the queue of pressing national business because they understand that a fair reform is in their political interest. Ezra Klein spelled this out.

Democrats obviously have an election to win. Harry Reid, in particular, has an election to win in a state with a very large Hispanic population. And reformers were certainly given a great gift when Arizona decided to write xenophobia into its lawbooks and create a sense of emergency around state-level action on this issue. Put it all together and some Democratic strategists see the chance to bury the GOP's relationship with Hispanics for a generation.

I'm stunned. Democrats understanding their interests lie with sticking up for constituents of color? Realizing that taking a combative, pro-migrant position is a winning stance for them?

For a person who watched California Democrats hide under rocks rather than defend immigrants from Gov. Pete Wilson's odious Prop. 187 in the 90s, their momentary clear-sighted comprehension of a moment when doing good will also be doing well is mind boggling.

It's always nice when that hopey-changy thing actually seems to be working as I think it ought to.

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