The Corner

Tea Party for Amnesty?

Dick Armey, the putative tribune of the Tea Partiers, has had sense enough up until now to keep his pro-amnesty, open-borders views to himself while helping rally grassroots opposition to the metastasizing state — though he and Grover have been working hard to keep immigration out of the Tea Party agenda (notice that the “Contract from America” doesn’t include anything on immigration or border security among the issues people are supposed to vote for). But Armey can’t help himself; Monday at the National Press Club, his “freewheeling talk” included the following:

In language that will likely be recalled in the upcoming debate over immigration, Armey minced no words in condemning Republicans over their stance.

“Who in the Republican Party was the genius who said now that we have identified the fastest-growing demographic in America, let’s go out and alienate them? This is a nation of immigrants. … There is room in America,” he said.

“When I was Republican leader, I saw to it that Tom Tancredo could not get on a stage because I saw how destructive he was,” Armey said of the anti-immigration former congressman. “Republicans have to get off this goofiness. Ronald Reagan said, ‘Tear down this wall.’ Tom Tancredo said ‘Build that wall.’ Who’s right? America is not a nation that builds walls. America is a nation that opens doors, and we should be that.”

Anyone want to take a vote and see how many Tea Party activists agree with him? No, I didn’t think so. This despite the fact that immigration is the health of the state, boosting the clientele for the welfare state and racial set-asides, among other things, meaning there’s no way to restrain the growth of government, let alone shrink it, without reducing future immigration.

To ask FreedomWorks, Armey’s organization, how it’s possible to reconcile its motto of “lower taxes, less government, more freedom” with a government-expanding, Democrat-electing policy of mass immigration, call them at 1.888.564.6273.

Mark Krikorian — Mark Krikorian, a nationally recognized expert on immigration issues, has served as Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) since 1995.

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