We keep hearing about how immigrants — those from Latin America, in particular — bring with them family values to help our side in the culture war. While Hispanic immigrants, like black Americans, are conservative on certain social issues (though not as much as some might think), it doesn’t matter politically. As one political scientist recently put it, in reaction to a new poll:
“It’s always been said that Latinos have a conflict between their religion and their political tendencies. That they’re usually more progressive on economic policy but conservative on social issues,” said Matt Barreto, a professor at the University of Washington in Seattle and advisor to Latino Decisions.
However, Barreto said the poll reflects no such conflict: “Religion and social and moral values are not among their priorities when they make their political and election calculations.”
That’s part of the reason why California, the state with the largest share of immigrants in its population, has “the first state law mandating lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history and social science curricula.” It’s not that immigrants demanded this nonsense; they probably don’t even like it very much. But their large-scale presence solidifies the position of the Left, making this kind of thing possible, and they aren’t turned off by it enough to rebel against it. When there’s a referendum, sure, they’ll vote against gay marriage, for instance, but that’s not the way most social policy is made. Both by importing faithful Democratic voters and through sheer numbers creating more safe leftist seats in local and state and federal legislatures, mass immigration empowers statism and cultural leftism. Conservative outreach to immigrants already here is imperative, and might make a difference at the margins, but it’s not going to change the fundamental reality that immigrants are, by definition, predominantly Democrats. As David Frum put it in Comeback:
Over the decades, Republicans have been many things: the party of the Union, the party of the gold standard, the party of temperance, the party of free enterprise, and the pro-life party, among others. Amid all these changes, there is one thing that has never changed: Republicans have always been the party of American democratic nationhood.
Democrats, by contrast, have historically tended to attract those who felt themselves in some way marginal to the American experience: slaveholders, indebted farmers, immigrants, intellectuals, Catholics, Jews, blacks, feminists, gays — people who identify with the “pluribus” in the nation’s motto, “e pluribus unum.” As the nation weakens, Democrats grow stronger.
It’s not that Democrats are necessarily bad (well, the slaveholder part was bad, but we finally beat that out of them), because every community needs a yin and a yang, as it were. But it does mean that any successful GOP effort to woo immigrants and their children will take generations — and if small-government, morally traditionalist, pro-sovereignty conservatism is to have any chance of lasting political success during our lifetimes, future immigration must be curbed.