Let’s forget simple facts like the reality that immigrants, especially illegals, go to where unemployment is lowest; that immigration, whether legal or not, is a boon to the larger economy; that illegals are already barred from virtually all sorts of budget-busting welfare and that they commit crimes at lower rates than native-born folks. Here’s a thought experiment: Imagine the parts of the country that are worst-off economically. Now go check out whether they are destinations for migrants of any kind, whether legal, illegal, or from other parts of the United States. Without exception, you will find that the hardest-luck parts of the nation are those without high levels of in-migration.
It’s not surprising that Trump buys into all this — or doesn’t care about the real world — but it is dismaying when a governor running for president, a distinguished conservative magazine and many Republican voters (although nowhere near a majority) say they approve. Sober candidates such as Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Jeb Bush dismissed the idea of repealing birthright citizenship (Ohio Gov. John Kasich does not support the idea either), correctly identifying that the idea as not grounded in reality. Carly Fiorina likewise rebuffed the idea.
It’s virtually impossible to imagine that anyone seriously supporting a Trump-like plan would make it to the Oval Office. If Republicans want to gain back the White House, they’d be wise to pick from candidates not aping Trump.