The Post published an editorial yesterday afternoon imploring Democrats to use their leverage in the border wall fight for a “truly moral purpose” — to protect the Dreamers. The editorial begins with predictable throat-clearing about the shutdown being on Trump and the wall being a wasteful, ineffective, prejudice-driven response to a made-up problem.
But because Both Sides, The Post editors mildly chide Pelosi for “opposing Mr. Trump’s wall in absolutist terms, calling it ‘immoral…'” and urge the Democrats to make a deal with the devil:
Rather than talk about the immorality of a wall, Democrats could use their leverage to achieve a truly moral purpose. In return for a few billion dollars for a segment of the president’s wall — which would immediately be challenged in court by property owners along the border — Democrats might permanently shield from deportation well over 1 million “dreamers,” young migrants primarily brought to this country as children by their parents. They might also protect tens of thousands of Haitians, Salvadorans and Hondurans whom the administration is preparing to expel after having lived legally in this country for years under a program known as Temporary Protected Status.
The difficulty, we understand, is that the president cannot be trusted to bargain in good faith. He agreed to a wall-for-dreamers deal last spring, only to reneg when his nativist aides and base objected. Now Mr. Trump cannot expect Democrats to deal unless he goes first, committing unequivocally to legalize the dreamers and TPS migrants in exchange for some border security.
It’s a long shot. But Democrats should leave themselves in a position to say yes if that long shot comes home. They would accomplish a great good for a huge number of blameless people — and for the country.
IMO, this was a defensible position last spring, when Trump seemed willing to exchange a path to citizenship for Dreamers for $25B for the wall. Sure, the wall was as dumb, racist and wasteful then as it is now. But giving relief to a million or so young people who are Americans in every sense but the official paperwork seemed a worthwhile trade to me.
But, as the WaPo editors themselves note, Trump killed that deal by demanding deep cuts to legal immigration, and he kicked off the current crisis by rejecting a deal he said he’d sign — all to appease unelected, racist screechers who have no legitimate role in driving policy.
The words “committing unequivocally” are utterly meaningless when applied to a pathological liar with no set principles nor an agenda beyond self-enrichment and soaking up real or pretend adulation from a motley assortment of white supremacists, plutocrat water-carriers and neocon warmongers. Trump has demonstrated this daily for going on two years now, most recently with a whipsaw walk-back on withdrawing troops from Syria.
Trying to make a deal with this particular devil isn’t a “long shot” — it’s political malpractice. We can’t trust Trump to follow through on any concessions he might offer to end the tantrum. And, to state the obvious, rewarding this extortion attempt will encourage further hostage-taking.
So far, the Democrats are hanging tough. But this editorial page caviling from The Post is a bad sign that the Both Sidesing is beginning in earnest. If you’re lucky enough to be represented by Democrats, maybe give their offices a call and thank them for not caving. If you (like me) are unfortunately represented by Republicans, tell them the Trump shutdown is hurting your community and they need to stop propping up the lying clown.
As for tonight’s address, I hear CNN at least is going to air Pelosi and Schumer’s rebuttal. I hope they’ll call out the lies and insist on a reality-based immigration debate. There’s no point in trying not to offend Trump’s idiotic voters, and there’s no obligation to “respect the office” when it’s held by a degenerate fraud.
Most Americans know Trump is a liar, so I’d go with that, plus maybe outline some actual solutions to real problems.