The Corner

Re: Borking Immigration Hawks

In all of the discussion about my Human Life Review article, it seems telling that no one attempts to refute any of the facts laid out in it. Indeed, Mark Krikorian is proud of the “common cause” he has with some on the left — it’s worth exploring who some of these people are.

The evidence shows that John Tanton and some of his close allies in the radical environmental movement started the Center for Immigration Studies. Prior to getting CIS off the ground Tanton helped create NumbersUSA and the Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform, and he was heavily involved in groups such as Planned Parenthood, the Sierra Club, Zero Population Growth, and the Michigan Council for the Study of Abortion.

Tanton’s environmental and anti-natal affiliations are no accident. Tanton and associates were drawn to fighting against immigration because the data showed that immigration was the main factor in American population growth, their primary concern. The population-control Left made a simple calculation: to help engineer a society with fewer people, they also needed to reduce all immigration. The Center for Immigration Studies was meant to be a part of that strategy.

Krikorian attempts to distract conservatives from CIS’s disturbing roots by conflating a lot of disparate organizations and individuals. Let me be clear about the organization I lead, the Hispanic Leadership Fund. We promote conservative principles. We seek to expand the conservative base to include more American Hispanics, who inevitably will continue to become a more prominent fixture in national elections.

Regarding immigration policy, it is clear that our current system is a byzantine, bureaucratic nightmare that makes legal immigration extremely difficult and perversely incentivizes people to cross our borders or overstay their visas without authorization. Our goals concerning potential legislation include avoiding amnesty, strengthening the rule of law, increasing border security, limiting government power, and promoting patriotic assimilation.

Krikorian makes clear that CIS is a single-issue group and not a conservative organization. As such, conservatives would be wise to look elsewhere for advice on how to handle the thorny political ramifications that surround immigration policy. Look no further than Mitt Romney’s disastrous adoption of the concept of “self-deportation” — a fantasy that would necessitate a dramatic increase in the size and scope of government.

Taking advice from those whose long-term interests are in conflict with conservative policy goals is a politically losing proposition for conservatives. And not being honest about associations — particularly when they are rooted in an attack on human life itself — ought to be unacceptable.

— Mario H. Lopez is president of the Hispanic Leadership Fund.


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