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After Republicans took a well deserved beating in last November's general election by appealing solely to white voters....an autopsy was performed on the cooling-body of the GOP corpse. Conservative experts in the field of interpreting the entrails of dead things concluded that rumors of the Party of Lincoln being pronounced dead as a doornail were oh-so-premature.
Out of that autopsy report, as told by the GOP Chairman and obvious Anagram Man, Reince Priebus, we learned that the GOP just needs to tweak a few rough spots in their messaging, draft better candidates and do something about the Latino vote....and then....winners.
Having already permanently alienated one minority, and having worked illegitimately hard to offend and alienate lady voters....the brain trust involved in the GOP autopsy concluded that the party couldn't really afford to alienate any other demographic groups. Reince and the fellas really have the pulse of the people, don't they?
So here we are in the middle of April, basically 5 months after the GOP 's bum got seriously kicked....and what has been taking shape within the Republican Party?
1) Marco Madness
2) Immigration Reform (just don't call it amnesty)
Allow me to explain in one partial sentence from USA Today.....
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., went on seven talk shows Sunday to explain the broad outline of the (immigration) bill .,...
You see, Marco is the GOP's Great Non-White Hope. He is a descendant of Cuban immigrants and could, at least theoretically, address the "messaging" problem the GOP autopsy allegedly revealed. Come again? Think Michael Steele. The GOP hated Michael Steele, who happens to be black, but they made him GOP Chairman anyway for, you know, "messaging" purposes. You do the translation.
So I read last night over at the moving-to-the-center Talking Points Memo that the Gang of Eight's (it's always a Gang, isn't it) immigration proposal is the "real deal." Even before I read the details, I laughed out loud.
Nothing coming out of a Gang consisting of McCain(R-AZ), Schumer (D-NY), Bennet (D-CO), Rubio (R-FL), Graham, (Goober-S.C.), Flake (R-AZ), Menendez (D-NJ), and Durbin (D-IL) could be reasonably considered to be a "real deal." Preening? Showboating? Yeah. "Real Deal"? No.
By all means, read the details of the provisions contained in Rubio's Presidential Bid, I mean, the "Real Deal". Here's my synopsis....
First, an undocumented can sign up to stand in a new line because standing at the back of the existing line might be confused with the dreaded "amnesty" taboo. The new line will be called the "registered provisional immigrant status"-line. No joke. An undocumented person can pay $500, pass a criminal check, and prove they were in the U.S. before the end of 2011. Doing so qualifies an undocumented "to live and work in the country but not receive any federal benefits."
Second, the Department of Homeland Security must come up with a plan which guarantees that the border is secured up to 90%. If they can't, an independent commission will be appointed who can. Don't ask me how the metrics will be determined, because no one could possibly know....and that's the point. Because the minority rules when the GOP is the minority, this 90%-secure feature is a safety valve for the minority party to monkey-wrench the entire "deal", "real" or not.
Third, if the minority party ever decides, in their political arbitrariness, that the border is secure by 90%.....then, and only then....the "registered provisional immigrants", RPI's for short, can set their 10 year time clocks. RPI's can't even apply for a green card until 10 years after the Serious determine the border has been secured by 90%. After the 10 year waiting period, after RPI's have obtained their green cards.....three more years must go by before the RPI-green-card-holder can apply for citizenship. Thirteen to fifteen years to get a shot at citizenship....and even then....everything is dependent on a Rubio presidency, I mean, securing the border to 90% effectiveness.
There are many more nooks and crannies of exceptions and U.S. profit-seeker prioritizing in the "real deal".....but the above is the basic "path to citizenship" which should not ever be confused with the word "amnesty". Why not? Because Marco says so, and he's the GOP's Great Non-White Hope.
Yes, we need comprehensive legislation to deal with the 10 million undocumenteds currently living in the U.S. However, let's not confuse what the Gang of Eight will present to Congress with true and reasonable immigration reform. The purpose of the Gang of Eight, and hence, it's product, is to resurrect the autopsied body of the GOP and set young Marco Rubio on his pedestal to await the 2016 nomination for president.
What stands out in particular to me is the maze, roundabout rigamarole....in all it's fine print legalese....that Rubio and his cohorts had to come up with in the hopes of persuading the hateful and discriminatory far right constituents in Rubio's own party from thinking that he and his minority party are considering "amnesty."
TPM calls it the "real deal." The Reverend sees it as really pathetic.