Jonah, I agree that barring any trade or travel across the southern border would be absurd, but any person of good will understood that’s not what Arnold meant, it’s clear, as his staff pointed out right afterwards. Such a clarification is fine — the “gaffe” part comes from the reaction of the hysterical left, that doesn’t want the border to be secured in any way, shape, or form. Jorge Bustamente, for instance, a prominent open-borders advocate whom I’ve debated on Wattenberg’s TV show, said “I personally don’t like Schwarzenegger because he’s anti-Mexican in his practices and his policies. He’s listening to the ideologies of the Republican Party.” Or this from MALDEF, which is the Ford Foundation’s Mexican auxiliary: “That’s not what we expected given the fact that the governor himself is an immigrant.”
Hilariously, at the very same time, the Democrats are continuing to talk tough on border control (though they obviously don’t mean it). Hillary is calling for a border security czar and Heather Mac Donald relates that Maxine Waters, of all people, started railing against illegal immigration at a hearing last week where Heather testified.
(Hat tip to Michelle Malkin’s Immigration Blog)