Goodlatte On Immigration

Photo from Representative Goodlatte’s website

Recently, several news sources have reported that Representative Bob Goodlatte is changing his stance on immigration.  According to these pieces, Goodlatte is considering supporting some form of amnesty for illegal aliens.

For example, Politico says, “House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) says he sees ‘no reason’ why current undocumented immigrants shouldn’t gain legal status as long as Congress enacts tougher border-security and enforcement measures.”  They quote Goodlatte as saying, “‘If we can have a way to get [enforcement] up and operating, I see no reason why we can’t also have an agreement that shows how people who are not lawfully here can be able to be lawfully here – able to live here, work here, travel to and from their home country, be able to own a business, pay their taxes.'”

National Review points out that Representative Goodlatte’s website has recently been modified to remove his opposition to amnesty.  A line on his site from early 2013 which read, “we must not grant amnesty to individuals who have broken our laws” has apparently been removed and now discusses the issue stating, “we can all agree that our nation’s immigration system is broken”.

In response, less than a half an hour ago, the following statement appeared on Representative Goodlatte’s Facebook page.  “A few recent news articles have misrepresented my work and position on immigration reform. The need to reform our immigration laws is clear; however, I am opposed to amnesty and always have been. I do not support a special pathway to citizenship that rewards those who have willfully broken our immigration laws.”

It is curious to read these somewhat contradictory statements regarding Goodlatte’s stance immigration.  Will Representative Goodlatte end up supporting amnesty or some version thereof as the articles state?  Or will he oppose the plan as today’s statement indicates?

Spin Away A Win

In yesterday’s California straw poll Ron Paul won a commanding victory capturing almost as many votes as Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Michele Bachmann combined.  The final vote totals are as such:

Ron Paul 374 votes or 44.9%

Rick Perry 244 votes or 29.3%

Mitt Romney 74 votes or 8.8%

Michele Bachmann 64 votes or 7.7%

The rest of the candidates finished with less than twenty votes apiece.

Given how the media has been hyping the results of previous straw polls you’d think that this one would be a big deal as well.  Although the various outlets are reporting this poll, a few are also quick to dismiss the impact of this particular poll.  For example, Politico reported that “it was not a prize that most campaigns were organizing for” and “Paul camp had brought in busloads of people to vote.”  Fox News repeated Politico’s earlier line in their story while MSNBC attempted to downplay the victory by repeating Politico’s statement that “it was not clear how much effort each of the other candidates put into winning the poll”.

As I stated prior to the Ames poll last month, I don’t take too much stock in straw polls.  None of these votes are binding and should serve primarily to motivate the campaigns, candidates, and activists.  Nevertheless, I believe that the primary point of the major media is to report issues objectively without spinning the issue to favor their cause or candidate.  Facts are facts, but when the media masquerades their opinions as if they were truth, one does have to question their ability to report without bias.  Of course, one can see a long history of such actions with even with the most superficial of glances at the 2007/08 campaign season.

Now, you might argue that I’m operating under a double standard here, but I’ve been quite clear time and time again that my choice for president is Dr. Paul.  Any article that I write concerning this issue should be viewed with the knowledge that it is crafted through a pro-Paul lens.

I congratulate Ron Paul and his campaign for their victory in California yesterday.  I hope that they are able to use that win to increase fundraising, activism, and excitement for the effort.  Although it is not a monumental victory, one should not completely dismiss it either.  Paul and his supporters are a growing force in the political dialogue.

But, then again, that’s just my 2¢.