Conceding Donald Trump's "love of Vladimir Putin is a big berak with the GOP orthodoxy," Steve M. observes the President is "just the modern GOP on rage-induced drugs."
Republicans favor torture and have "an obsession with torture," he points out. Their support for the President's eagerness for deficit spending comports neatly with their passion for blowing up the deficit whenever the President is a Republican..
And of course, immigration, regarding which Steve M. cites questions those who doubt
the largely Republican-driven shutdowns of immigration reform efforts in both the Bush and Obama years? Or anti-immigration anger so vociferous that it led John McCain, once a supporter of reform, to demand that the government "complete the danged fence."
Were he blogging primarily about the GOP's immigration policy, rather than the failure to understand that Trump is a creationof the Republican Party, he would have noticed another similarity between Trump's immigration policy and GOP orthodoxy which has gone under the radar. This is the ten-point immigration plan on the Trump-Pence campaign website:
1. Begin working on an impenetrable physical wall on the southern border, on day one. Mexico will pay for the wall.
2. End catch-and-release. Under a Trump administration, anyone who illegally crosses the border will be detained until they are removed out of our country.
3. Move criminal aliens out day one, in joint operations with local, state, and federal law enforcement. We will terminate the Obama administration’s deadly, non-enforcement policies that allow thousands of criminal aliens to freely roam our streets.
4. End sanctuary cities.
5. Immediately terminate President Obama’s two illegal executive amnesties. All immigration laws will be enforced - we will triple the number of ICE agents. Anyone who enters the U.S. illegally is subject to deportation. That is what it means to have laws and to have a country.
6. Suspend the issuance of visas to any place where adequate screening cannot occur, until proven and effective vetting mechanisms can be put into place.
7. Ensure that other countries take their people back when we order them deported.
8. Ensure that a biometric entry-exit visa tracking system is fully implemented at all land, air, and sea ports.
9. Turn off the jobs and benefits magnet. Many immigrants come to the U.S. illegally in search of jobs, even though federal law prohibits the employment of illegal immigrants.
10. Reform legal immigration to serve the best interests of America and its workers, keeping immigration levels within historic norms.
For all of Donald Trump's bluster, there is one key item missing from the list. Chris Matthews asked guest Haley Barbour Thursday evenig "why does Trump never mention illegal hiring?" Here he is, the Mr. Populist who broke through that supposed "blue wall" in the Rust Belt by winning the states of Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin, and there is no talk of illegal hiring or the workplace raids.
Trump does promise to "triple the number of ICE agents," but that is followed by "anyone who enters the U.S. illegally" because the focus is on people who haven't yet crossed the border. If the immigrants already are here- illegally- employed at a job a native-born individual or legal immigrant otherwise would have, Trump doesn't want to hear about it.
There has been little support over the past few decades for deporting individuals who ae in the country illegally and employed, and President Trump has given little indication he will challenge that. Building a wall to keep out individuals not yet here goes down much easier, like a little sugar with medication. Viewing video of men, women, and children already in the USA being kicked out would be much more discomfiting.
Business interests are not to be offended. We wouldn't want to cut into the profit in hiring cheap, non-union, vulnerable labor, would we? In this and in other ways Donald Trump is, as characterized by Steve M., "a Republican evolution, not an aberration."