by Quin Hillyer
As Donald Trump brings his humbug show to Mobile — please, don’t pay any attention to the man behind the curtain — the excellent John Sharp of al.com quoted me at some length on the visit. He quoted me accurately — but, unfortunately for me, and not due to any fault of his, some of the context was lost.
Among other things, I slammed Trump’s immigration plan. What got left out was that I wholeheartedly endorsed the three broad principles on immigration that Trump outlined. So would almost any sentient being who cares about America, including a trained chimpanzee.
I also agree that there is a question about the extent to which current policy grants “birthright citizenship,” and some good arguments that children of illegals don’t automatically qualify. And I’m all for building a wall, and other tough-at-the-border measures.
But numerous conservatives have noted and explained at some length why Trump’s plans to finance the wall (and “get Mexico to pay for it”) is impractical or even of dubious legality. For just one example, the article today accurately quoted my explanation that raising fees at the border will actually increase incentives for poor Mexicans to try to come illegally, because they won’t be able to afford legal entry.
But one other thing I said did not make the cut in the article. One of my main points was that Trump cannot be believed, in the slightest, on immigration because he has always been an open-borders guy until he decided that the way to gain support for his campaign was to act like he is, histrionically, against illegals. But just a few years ago he was effectively advocating forms of amnesty not just for 11 million, but 30 million, illegals. And he said less than three years ago that the main reason Mitt Romney lost the 2012 presidential race was that Romney was too tough on illegals.
The man is not believable. He’s a phony. This is one reason why the specifics of his plan don’t add up, even if the general direction of it does: because Trump doesn’t care if he makes sense, because he doesn’t even believe in his own proposal, because it’s all just for show — because he actually wants to let in 30 million of the “great, productive people” that come here, or will come here, illegally.