Hillary Clinton demonstrated tonight that if we only had a political party committed to American sovereignty — sans the gratuitous baggage that has come along with Trump — the Democrats would be decimated on the issue of immigration alone, not to mention other policies.
Kellyanne Conway must have invented a pill to finally keep Trump on message about the issues, and it especially showed with regard to immigration before it wore off later in the debate. Hillary got ensnared in the classic open borders canard in which the radicals extol the virtues of illegal immigration, but then are forced to proclaim why they still support border security. Which begs the question: what exactly are they trying to secure if they want illegal immigrants?
Hillary referred to “undocumented” immigrants almost a dozen times and refused to recognize the interests of American citizens. At one point she brazenly said this used to be a bipartisan issue. She is more correct than she knows!
In the 1995 State of the Union Address, her husband, President Bill Clinton, exalted the work of the Jordan Commission on immigration — which called for a reduction in immigration and comprehensive enforcement against illegal immigration. He railed against the unfairness of illegal immigration and sounded, ironically, a lot like …Trump.
During tonight’s debate, Hillary went on to offer the false choice between open borders and mass deportations by trains and buses. Nobody is buying that line anymore. We already have a deportation force — it’s called ICE. Husband deported four times as many people as Obama did and more than the Bush administration did using that force. And don’t even get me started on Harry Reid’s strong position on immigration in the ‘90s and the bipartisan bill after 9/11 to cut off visas to countries with a presence of Islamic terrorists.
Indeed, there was a time when both parties supported the concept of a nation state with borders.
Then, Chris Wallace caught her in the tight rope act between what she really believes on immigration and what she tells the public:
Secretary Clinton, I want to clear up your position on this issue, because in a speech you gave to a Brazilian bank, for which you were paid $225,000, we’ve learned from the WikiLeaks, that you said this, and I want to quote. “My dream is a hemispheric common market with open trade and open borders. So that’s the question…”
Hillary simply could not answer the question, and in an awkward pivot, began hitting Trump on his comments about Putin. She simply demurred on the issue of immigration by saying the comments were only about energy. Yeah, right.
You could hear the sucking sound coming out of her level of support from your average swing voter.
Unfortunately, this was probably a dollar late and a dime short to get to issues of substance, given that the contours of this race are already defined by baggage. But what this debate did demonstrate is that when the focus is on issues, Democrats lose; when it’s about personalities, Democrats win. It’s that simple. The few times Chris Wallace veered off his very effective and disciplined agenda into personal stuff you could feel Trump doing damage to himself. When it was about issues, Trump’s performance vacillated depending on the issue, but Hillary was not winning points on a single policy and was an utter disaster on immigration. In general, Trump expressed the least support for some of his liberal positions and the most support for conservative ideas than at any other time, especially towards the beginning on the topics of the Constitution and immigration.
Does this mean he is back in the game? It’s hard to see enough people moving beyond the character issues to dramatically alter the entrenched impressions of him, especially when he is down by so much with early voting already under way. He also didn’t help himself by refusing to accept the outcome of the election. Once again, when he wasn’t attacking Hillary from principle on issues he was hemorrhaging support. However, the exposure of Hillary’s radicalism on policies such as immigration will likely help Republicans down ballot by reminding voters that there is more to life than Donald Trump’s zaniness after November 8. The American people don’t want to give the keys of all of the federal government to the Democrats. Hillary will not have a mandate to pursue a single policy issue.
The field is wide open for a new movement, unencumbered by the distraction of personal baggage, to fight the Democrats on the issues. The Left has nothing left but to fight Republicans on their own glass jaw. What if we had a party unvarnished by Trump-like personal baggage or pale-pastel immigration and economic views of establishment Republicans? Perhaps, even if we accepted the outcome of the presidential election, their dangerous agenda would be crushed in the states and in Congress.
A Hillary victory will be an utter disaster. But tonight’s debate performance shows why there might also be a critical opportunity to finally fight back on the issues in a way we’ve never done before.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.