Does anyone remember when the public trusted Democrats over Republicans overwhelmingly on health care? It's true. Go back to 2000-2008 and you'll find a near two to one polling number on which party was favored on health care.
Then, we had a substantive health care debate and those numbers are just about mirror images. The public inherently believed that the president was promising everything to every body and he was promising everyone that no one would have to pay for it. The public believed this was simply impossible.
We are in the beginning stages of a national debate that will likely be as consuming on illegal immigration as the one we had on health care. This happened once before. That was in the summer of 2007. Then, the Republicans didn't just lose but were slaughtered. They came off as weak and wobbly to their base and racist to Hispanics. It played a not so insignificant role in their upcoming losses.
Republicans still seem like racists to Hispanics but things are turning around with their base. Take a look at this advertisement by John McCain.
I have some electoral advice for President Obama. If he wants to improve his job approval by five points minimum, he needs to hold a simple five minute speech. In that speech, he needs to announce that he's calling up fifty thousand national guard troops to back up the border patrol on the Southern border and their initial task would be to fast track the building of the fence passed in 2007. That would immediately improve his standing.
Of course, that's not the tack that Obama is taking. Instead, he's criticizing the Arizona law as misguided, unconstitutional, and a violation of basic civil rights. Unless President Obama takes tangible steps to secure the border, that tack will cause the Democratic party to lose their advantage on immigration like they already lost it on health care.
Everyone from President Obama, the Los Angeles City Council, to an Assistant Superintendent in Highland Park, Il. have given the liberal perspective in illegal immigration. That perspective has been routinely rejected by polling in Arizona and nationwide. Every time this inconvenient fact is pointed out, liberals compare their stance to Jim Crow laws, Nazism, and even slavery. Thus, they've compared the majority of Americans to those that supported those acts.
Now, if John McCain can go from teaming up with Ted Kennedy on immigration to going way right, that's where the party is going as well. It's very simple. Back building the fence asap, putting the guard behind the border patrol, a national id card for immigrants, and serious sanctions against employers that hire illegals, and you win this issue. That's where Republicans are going and Democrats are calling them racists as they get there. As such, illegal immigration will flip to Republicans much like health care already has.
Please check out my new books, "Prosecutors Gone Wild: The Inside Story of the Trial of Chuck Panici, John Gliottoni, and Louise Marshall" and also, "The Definitive Dossier of PTSD in Whistleblowers"