The Corner

Red Flags in The Bush Immigration Proposal

Andrew, Jonah, Ramesh: In scrutinizing this kind of legislative proposal,

we should keep a keen look-out for statements by politicians and sympathetic

pundits that such and such a measure ABSOLUTELY WILL NOT LEAD TO such and

such an undesirable consequence. When you hear it said that legislative

proposal (A) ABSOLUTELY WILL NOT LEAD TO undesirable consequence (B), you

should immediately contact your local bookmaker and place a $1,000 bet that

(A) will, in fact, lead to (B), and probably in short order. The judiciary

will see to that! Recall, for instance, Hubert Hunphrey’s assurance, at the

time of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, that it ABSOLUTELY WOULD NOT LEAD TO race

quotas and preferences. (I think he actually promised to eat the

legislation if it did.)