Establishment Insensitivity, The Real RINOs, And Cruz’s Real Compassionate Conservatism Part 2
In 1996, I was at my state Republican Party convention when the term “RINO,” had just begun to be used. "Republican In Name Only" was a real phenomenon, at least in Texas. Texas was once like all states in the South, an entirely Democrat dominated state. But the Republican tide was now fully in and the party was salted with career Democrat politicians who had changed their party ID but not their ideology. They were still Democrats with a Republican label.
Today, the epithet has become so handy that it is a brand of ignominy for anyone perceived as weak on any issue. And I say perceived intentionally. In the first place, the only respect with which I can attach immigration to conservatism is the extent to which it involves respecting and enforcing the law. America hasn’t enforced and doesn’t enforce the law, and I agree that’s a huge problem. It invites more of the same evasion, and invites criminal elements when even civil misdemeanor or felonious activities are not prosecuted or sanctioned in sanctuary jurisdictions. A respectable federal executive branch, which we don’t at the moment have, would sanction those sanctuary jurisdictions.
But some cry “RINO” at anyone who does not think that the way to repair the situation that has developed from many decades of non-enforcement and practically asking people to enter the country unauthorized, is to authorize a force to go place to place, digging out many millions of unlawful aliens and their families and summarily deporting them all. That’s the Trump prescription that has been dismissed by Ted Cruz who calls only for the deportation of unlawful aliens that are apprehended as a matter of course, i.e., upholding the law; though I understand some still see that as outrageous and intolerant. Go figure. Trump fans and many others, perhaps most often and sometimes solely for a wrong word on immigration, quickly shout “RINO.”
The Trump soldiers almost seem to think a RINO is anyone who criticizes or disagrees with Trump. And one has to ask: If someone who originally supported Obamacare and still calls for federally mandated universal health care, supported the TARP bailouts, praised Obama’s stimulus except that it wasn’t big enough, in the past called himself very pro-choice and was named in 2015 by Planned Parenthood its favorite Republican, said in 2015 that maybe Israel doesn’t want peace and needs to give up more, sought eminent domain to take an older woman’s property for a casino limousine parking lot, wants to impose stiff trade tariffs, not long ago thought Hillary Clinton was a fantastic public official, all this and more; if that isn’t a Republican In Name Only, the term is essentially meaningless.