Republicans Are in No Rush to Embrace Arizona's Law
So reports Hotline OnCall's Reid Wilson, who notes that Republican candidates are not throwing their support behind Arizona's controversial new immigration-enforcement law. Wilson writes:
Few front-running candidates have embraced the new law, opting instead to highlight the frustration that led to the legislation's passage without saying flat-out they support the measure."The Arizona law is a natural reaction of states trying to solve a problem that the federal government has basically ignored for 30 years. Year in and year out, states have been forced to shoulder the increased costs associated with illegal immigration," ex-CO LG Jane Norton (R) said. "If I'm elected as US Senator, I will stand up for the rights of states like Arizona to protect their citizens from illegal immigration."Some candidates have come out against provisions in the bill that would give law enforcement the right to request proof of citizenship, even while voicing support for stronger immigration laws.
It's true that the GOP houses some hard-line conservatives on immigration in its ranks, but the party has notably struggled to draw votes from Hispanics, who voted 67 percent for President Obama in the 2008 election.
Wilson points out that the typical GOP response to Arizona's law involves pointing to the frustration with illegal immigration that led to its passage. That's the route McCain took in defending the new law in an impassioned Senate floor speech this week. Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants, deftly walked a fine line in his own statement on the law.
See Wilson's post for more reactions from Republican candidates.