Founders were very clear that they intended
naturalization to be controlled by the federal government instead
of by the states, as it had been under the Articles of Confederation,
because they wanted stricter standards, not looser standards. While
there were several motivations for this principle, the overarching
reason was that they wanted to ensure the voting populace would
consist of those who shared our democratic-republican values.
though immigrants back then were all from the same European stock as
the current Americans, Theodore Sedgewick said during the debate on
the 1790 naturalization bill that “their sensations, impregnated with
prejudices of education, acquired under monarchical and aristocratical
Governments, may deprive them of that zest for pure republicanism,
which is necessary in order to taste its beneficence with that
gratitude which we feel on the occasion.” Madison spoke of
admitting only those “who are attached to our Country by its natural
and political advantages.”
feared they would “bring with them the principles of the governments
they leave, imbibed in their early youth…These principles, with their
language, they will transmit to their children. In proportion to their
numbers, they will share with us the legislation. They will infuse
into it their spirit, warp and bias its direction, and render it a
heterogeneous, incoherent, distracted mass.”
solution to this problem is having a gradual and balanced immigration
system based on merit and shared values. Instead, the endless cycles
of illegal immigration, amnesties, and back-door amnesty-style
programs (asylum, temporary protected status, refugees), in
conjunction with chain migration, has made
our immigration system work for foreigners, not for citizens,
realizing the worst nightmares of our founders.
further than California to understand how
immigration done wrong can lead to a permanent majority of anti-life,
pro-big-government Democrats. The problem is that many other states
are headed down the same path, in a slower but inexorable trajectory.
If the same policies continue, if chain migration is not immediately
halted, conservatives will find themselves in the minority nationwide,
and no other issue will matter. Even though the Republican Party is
not conservative, it is perceived as such and should take heed of the
obvious warning signs.
this is not like the great immigration wave of the last century
has been a lot of focus in recent years on the number of green cards
issued each year, but not on the number of people becoming citizens.
Over the past 20 years, the U.S. has admitted roughly 700,000-800,000
citizens into our voting population every year, with a few years
reaching one million. Most of them have come from countries with
dramatically different worldviews on issues such as guns, health care,
and the size of government. Many deniers within the GOP of the
political problems of mass migration point to past history and saying
our previous large wave of immigration didn’t create a permanent
liberal majority. But that is because we are now dwarfing the previous
great wave in numbers.
during the highest naturalization years of the great wave, we admitted
anywhere from 100,000 to 250,000 new citizens to our electorate. In
other words, even during the great wave, when there were some years we
admitted roughly as many annual immigrants as we do today, that era of
immigration didn’t result in as many people becoming citizens. Some of
this had to do with life expectancy, but either way, the wave didn’t
result in nearly as many naturalizations. And even the peak period of
naturalization was not only much smaller but only lasted for a short
period of time.
1996 to 2013, 12,609,174 new immigrants became citizens. During the
actual great wave, the number of naturalizations was still very low
because it took time for them to go through the system and become
citizens. But even if you take an equivalent 18-year period with the
highest level of naturalizations, which was from 1928 to1945, just
3,835,758 immigrants were naturalized. In other words, while the
immigration wave of the modern era was 66 percent larger than the
great wave, the “naturalization wave” was 329 percent greater.
we have not even actualized the full extent of this wave of
immigration, which is still growing.
let’s not forget that because of the shutoff in the ’20s, the peak of
naturalizations resulting from the great wave coincided with a
cool-off in new immigration. Contrast that to today’s wave of
naturalizations that are coinciding with an even larger wave of new
admissions from similar areas. This ensures a lack of assimilation
into our constitutional values. Although immigrants have always voted
for more liberal politicians, enough of them were moving on to the
second generation and becoming conservatives. The ’30s and ’40s, when
the highest numbers of great wave immigrants were becoming voting
members of society, was the lowest of our new immigration levels. As
noted immigration historian Maldwyn Allen Jones observed, “With
reinforcements no longer arriving from across the ocean, ties with
Europe were gradually weakened and memories of the old life grew
dimmer with each passing year.” This dynamic “accelerated the
Americanization of those groups which had come earlier.”
is changing because the numbers are too great, the welfare state too
expansive, and the immigrants dramatically and disproportionately
coming from impoverished lands.
the map blue
explore the results of this wave as it relates to critical states
electorally, and you will see why it is so hard for Republicans to
crack the blue firewall. This is somewhat old data, and the trajectory
is growing every year:
is self-evident from this data is not only the danger of Republicans
losing places like Texas, Florida, and Arizona. It’s not only an
explanation of why Republicans lost Virginia, Colorado, and Nevada. It
also foreshadows what will happen to North Carolina, Georgia, and
beyond. As late as 1990, the foreign-born population of Virginia was
just five percent. It swelled to 11.4 percent in 2010 and is still
surging, as high as 12.3 percent in 2016. While Virginia has
experienced an influx of already-American liberals over the past two
decades, that would only explain why it’s a marginal red state or even
a purple state, not why it’s become a blue state.
take a look at the numbers and recent trajectory from Georgia. Again,
there is an influx of American white liberals from other states as
well as a general increase in black turnout. But immigration is what
is going to paint those states purple.
talks about shutting off chain migration 10 to 15 years from now, but
the reality is that just the existing trajectory will paint the map
not every state will become as blue as California, the lessons of the
Golden State should be a stark warning for what happens with
salad-bowl rather than melting-pot immigration. Orange County,
California, was once the bread basket of GOP dominance in California.
As late as 1988, George H.W. Bush won more than twice as many votes as
Democrat Michael Dukakis there. As late as 2004, when the broader
state was long gone, George W. Bush won it by 20 points. Republicans
narrowly carried it for the next two elections, until they downright
lost it by 8 points in 2016.
happened? In 1980, 12.7 percent of the county was foreign-born. In
2016, an estimated 30 percent of the county was foreign-born, and 45.6
percent of its residents speak a foreign language at home. Orange
County, California, will now be blue forever.
California is lost forever, Texas and Florida are both independently
vital to the GOP’s relevance. Dallas County, Texas, for example, has
gone from 5 percent foreign-born in 1980 to 23 percent in 2016. Reagan
won the county by 59.2 percent in 1980, while Trump lost it by a
whopping 26 points in 2016. Sure, some of this has to do with Trump’s
particular weakness with some college-educated urban/suburban white
voters, and he has compensated for it by running up margins elsewhere.
But the influx of unprecedented immigration has gradually and
relentlessly shifted a number of counties to the Democrats over the
past few elections.
cannot escape the conclusion that unless there is a cool-off on
overall immigration, the unprecedented size and duration of this wave,
constantly reinforcing itself, will ensure that there are not enough
second-generation voters assimilating into constitutional values to
offset the new influx voting for big government. This is a clear
distinction from past waves of immigration.
course, conservatives need to reach out to all new voters from all
parts of the world to sell their message. But numbers and time matter
greatly. Constitutional values can be sold to a melting pot of
Americans; it will not resonate with a salad bowl.
bottom line is this: There are many good policy reasons to cool down
mass migration at this point. We need a more balanced immigration
system for cultural, economic, and security reasons. But for
Republicans who don’t care about policy and only care about political
survival, they must understand that unless they change their tune on
immigration and do so immediately, they and their party will become