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US borders

Biden needs to get a grip on migration

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

By embodying the “worst elements of the right”, Donald Trump empowered America’s extreme left, says Andrew Sullivan in The Weekly Dish. The most successful politicians of recent decades, Reagan and Thatcher, dragged their opponents towards their own agenda, giving us Clinton and Blair. Trump did the opposite, helping to “radicalise” democrats against him. Take immigration. His “legislative incompetence”, penchant for “cruelty” and “bristling xenophobia” have made the opposing view – open borders – much more appealing to voters. The fledgling Biden-Harris administration has listened: the talk now is of defunding the wall and stopping deportations.

The problem is, that sends a “big, permissive signal” to those south of the border and incentivises a “surge” of illegal migration, which could hit a 20-year high. If the Democrats really want this influx of unskilled workers, they need to explain how they plan to integrate them and avoid depressing wages for unskilled African-Americans, legal Latino immigrants and the white working class. Biden needs to stop the “cheap moralising” and explain how another wave of migrants won’t “super-charge” the populist right, as it has everywhere this century. Americans want to that know immigration is under control. Right now it isn’t, and too many Democrats seem “oddly fine with that.” 

Read the full article here.