There is no better insight into the thinking and tactics of Heritage Action than its own, hysterical e-mails, including one Right Turn obtained that went to all members of Congress. Heritage is irate that hundreds of  Republicans and religious leaders from all over the country are coming in to push for immigration reform, which Heritage Foundation used to be for until the Jim DeMint era.

Jim DeMint, president of the Heritage Foundation. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press) Jim DeMint, president of the Heritage Foundation. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

Consider what they think of fellow Republicans and clergy who see immigration as consistent with American values and economic growth: “The new pressure on House members to pass amnesty for illegal immigrants — an effort bankrolled by well-known liberal billionaires such as George Soros, Michael Bloomberg and Mark Zuckerberg — couldn’t be more detached from the sentiments of the American people.” This comes from the gang who told us Americans would back the government shutdown. Even worse, it accuses its political opponents of being dupes and phonies: “[T]hey’re being used to advance an amnesty policy that is far from conservative, and will cost trillions to American taxpayers. . . . One has to wonder how many of those being flown in truly represent the views of their congregations, employees, fellow workers and neighbors on specific problems in the system. Conservatives are for legal immigration, but against illegal immigration. The proposals on the table not only continue business as usual — they are unfair to those waiting in line and make things worse for current citizens.”

Actually, many conservatives are for earned citizenship, precisely what was in the Senate bill. Those people they call dupes and frauds?  “Among the scheduled speakers are Barrett Duke, a vice president of the Southern Baptist Convention, Al Cardenas, chairman of the American Conservative Union, and Grover Norquist, founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform.”

It’s bracing to see what appeals Heritage Action makes. Facts don’t matter. A bill with fines, back taxes and a slew of other requirements is dubbed “amnesty,” and those who disagree are simply puppets. It’s typical, unfortunately, of the rhetoric and tactics of this group.

This is the sort of pushback that sent Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) running for the hills on immigration reform. He now says he was against one big immigration bill, then was for it (and sponsored it) and now is against it. Not exactly a profile in courage.

At any rate, it’s telling that Heritage Action must resort to such juvenile and untruthful appeals. It might suggest to lawmakers that its case is weak.