The Legend of Wooley Swamp

What ever happened to nuance? Jabberwocky is being spewed up by the left and right as they try to drag us into their Wonderlands. This blog charts a path out of this swamp of simple truths and false certainties. And from time to time, it'll be a place for more light-hearted musings.

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Friday, March 31, 2006

Ringing the Amnesty Alarm Bell

Amnesty - as alluded to in other posts here and here - is the buzzword for those opposed to meaningful immigration reform. Initially, it was only bandied about by those on the House side but then Senate Majority Leader, and Presidential hopeful, Bill Frist of Tennessee joined the fray.

However, with President Bush pushing for reform beyond the draconian House (and Fristian) measures - and with the Senate getting ready to pass a comprehensive bill - some House members are reconsidering. As Charles Hurt of the Washington Times details in this piece, the waverers include none other than House Majority Leader John Boehner of Ohio.

And today, Hurt reports on how some Congressmen are beginning to play the backlash card, claiming that the masses will soon be baying for immigrant blood. Talk about following (or pretending to follow) and not leading. As usual, Tom Tancredo is dancing to tune of the mad piper, click here for a portrait of an angry man.

Finally, the Washington Post's Dana Milbank dissects the (ab)use of the new "A" word in this column:

"Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), behind a pulpit adorned with a "Just Say No to Amnesty" sign, thundered: "Anybody that votes for an amnesty bill deserves to be branded with a scarlet letter, 'A' for amnesty, and they need to pay for it at the ballot box in November."
Stand down, Hester Prynne. Adultery is so 17th-century....

But the use of the word "amnesty" -- more than 50 times on the Senate floor yesterday -- says much about the immigration debate. Proponents of the "guest-worker" path toward legalization appear to have gained the upper hand; Specter seems to have the votes in the Senate, and House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) is rethinking his chamber's hostility to a guest-worker plan. Opponents, therefore, need to escalate the rhetoric and invoke the A-word....
(click here to read the whole column)

Off to listen to the Senators wax eloquent (and alarmist.)


Update: Just after I reached the Capitol Building, the Senators realized what I soaked up on my way there. It was Friday, the sun was out, it was warm, the cherry blossoms were blooming and thus, without further ado, they called it a weekend. But we'll all be back on Monday.

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