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The Democrats have walked into an immigration trap The American Left's zeal has backfired

Biden visits El Paso (JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)

Biden visits El Paso (JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)


October 2, 2023   4 mins

For the American Left, the four years of Donald Trump’s presidency offered ample opportunity to criticise his immigration policy. Those were the days of coast-to-coast airport shutdowns and street demonstrations, hipsters with “Abolish ICE” T-shirts, and a weekend in which the American Civil Liberties Union pulled in $24 million in donations just by promising to file court challenges to Trump’s executive orders. Activists and Democratic lawmakers alike travelled to the border to protest detention centres and the alleged fascism they embodied.

Two years later, their zeal appears to have backfired: faced with a record surge in migration on the southern border, the polarisation of immigration has placed President Joe Biden in a political and bureaucratic bind. Border Patrol agents estimate that in just one 24-hour period in September, 10,000 migrants arrived in Eagle Pass, a small town on the US-Mexico border that is home to 30,000 residents. Further north, the Mayor of El Paso, Texas, has warned that the border city, experiencing a flow of 1,200 migrants per day, is at “breaking point”.

This unmanageable flow of migration, already overwhelming hospitals and shelter beds in New York and Chicago, is rapidly fuelling a backlash among local Republican and Democratic leaders alike. And the strain is spilling over into the presidential race. Recent polls show Biden is deeply unpopular, in part due to his response to migration. A recent Washington Post/ABC News poll found that 62% of Americans disapprove of his actions on the issue.

In response to the crisis, Biden appears to have doubled down, sending the signal that his administration welcomes more immigrants. Last month, he granted legal work status to nearly 500,000 Venezuelans who have entered the country over the last two years. Measures that might deter those considering the journey, such as greater enforcement of immigration laws or border security, appear off the table. Yet while the response is in tune with the modern Democratic Party’s approach to the issue, it is far from the historical norm.

Ronald Reagan, for instance, passed sweeping laws creating new penalties for illegal migration while extending amnesty to millions. Barack Obama and George W. Bush later supported greater enforcement while encouraging lawmakers to enact new protections for the undocumented. Even Biden himself appears to have changed his tune. “Folks, I voted for a fence,” he told a small Rotary club in South Carolina in 2006. “I voted for 700 miles of fence.” And he wasn’t the only one: the legislation he was referring to‚ the Secure Fence Act — was supported by much of the Democratic caucus, including then-Senator Hillary Clinton and current Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Later, as Vice President, Biden stood alongside Obama while the administration exceeded records for deportations, eventually hitting 3 million removals. Biden, like most Democrats at the time, also campaigned for greater surveillance and enforcement measures, including a massive $46 billion border security reform that passed the Senate in 2013 but collapsed following an onslaught of attacks from a new wave of House Republican politicians — many of whom represented historically working-class union-heavy districts in the manufacturing belt of the Midwest. These lawmakers bitterly opposed new migrants and refugees, and instead urged the removal of legal status from even the children of migrants born on American soil. This revanchist approach presaged the style that soon gave rise to Trump, who announced his bid for the presidency in 2015 by warning darkly that migrants from Mexico are “rapists” bringing drugs into the country.

As his rhetoric became more belligerent, the days when Democrats acted tough on enforcement or voiced concerns for American workers forced to compete with low-wage immigrants quickly evaporated. Support for greater migrant rights and opposition to enforcement became a litmus test for candidates. Crucially, this mirrored a demographic shift with the Democratic Party, which increasingly gained support in the affluent suburbs, where voters are less likely to see low-wage migrants as economic competition and are more likely to view migration as a net positive.

Corporate leaders, perhaps to conceal their support of Trump’s tax and regulatory policies, also loudly advertised their opposition to him on the issue of immigration, and promised big donations to immigration reform activists, who became increasingly vocal within Democratic circles. For his part, Biden, as he campaigned for the presidency in 2020, recanted his Obama administration record. “I think it was a big mistake,” he admitted, promising to end the construction of Trump’s border wall and do everything in his power to promote legal as well as undocumented migration.

Just as remarkable was the dismantling of local-level immigration controls. Much of the deportation bureaucracy had relied on migrants being arrested for crimes locally, often for traffic violations such as drunk driving, and then being processed through transfers from local prisons to federal immigration authorities. In rebellion against Trump, however, Democratic states, mayors and other local leaders moved to ban such cooperation. The “sanctuary city” rules that sharply limited the participation of local law enforcement in immigration enforcement, once a quirk of liberal bastions such as San Francisco, became the norm as the entire state of California adopted such rules. While this push had the desired effect of blunting Trump’s ability to deport, the effective outlawing of police assistance has tied the hands of Biden’s own immigration officials.

And who is to blame? At a gala dinner in September, Biden singled out Trump for his immigration woes. “The Maga Republican congressmen of my predecessor spent four years gutting the immigration system,” he said. And, in some ways, he was right. Trump and the House Republicans turned immigration into a political battlefield. The real problem, however, was that the anti-Trump Left couldn’t stop themselves from gleefully embracing the opportunity for a fight, blissfully unaware that, just two years later, it would prove to be a trap.


Lee Fang is an investigative journalist and Contributing Editor at UnHerd. Read his Substack here.

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Daniel P
Daniel P
7 months ago

Out of control illegal immigration is going to kill the democrats next year.

Places like NYC, Chicago and LA that were all for sanctuary status when it cost them nothing are now losing their minds as their cities are overrun and their democrat voting populations lose their minds about the costs. The financial costs for managing the immigrants, housing and feeding them, transporting them, providing schooling for their kids, scrambling to find translators and bilingual teachers, the burden on police departments that are still reeling from the “Defund the Police” disaster, is infuriating them. The need to turn hotels and schools and community centers into holding centers is infuriating them. They are hoisted on their own petards and embarrassed by their own NIMBY behavior. Lest we forget Martha’s Vineyard.

That these liberal, bright blue, cities are not able to get the Biden administration to send them help is also setting them off.

No, a WHOLE lot of democrats are now being impacted, not just border states like Texas, and they are not happy, not happy at all. Do not see them voting for any candidate that has an open border agenda or who wants to defund ICE or anything else that does not shut off the southern border.

THAT is gonna be really awkward for a lot of democrat politicians who are on record, on tape, spouting about how Trump was wrong and how we should be welcoming, how we need to be sanctuary cities to stop deportation. Gonna be a nightmare for them.

Now, do I think a whole lot of hard core democrats will just vote republican? Sure, SOME will, but the impact from those who simply refuse to vote at all could be more impactful. All it takes to swing a state like IL or NY or NJ is for democrats in the big cities to choose not to vote.

And heck, we have not even gotten to things like federal spending, inflation, and the fact that the Fed is very likely going to tip the US into a deep recession sometime next year and do so with the stated intention of driving up unemployment.

Toss in the issues around trans rights and schools? NOT popular among the black and latino communities. Could see even more democrats just refuse to vote in protest, regardless if it means Trump wins. Some democrats who hate Trump hate the immigration issues in their communities more and would be perfectly happy to have him come back and deal with it so they do not have to.

Could be an interesting year people.

J Bryant
J Bryant
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

That’s a great comment. I would add that the Democrats’ strategy for 2024 now rests entirely on making Donald Trump the Republican nominee. They are counting on Trump Derangement Syndrome driving their base, and the all-important undecideds, to vote Democrat even though many of those voters strongly disapprove of certain Democratic policies.
I know a lot of people won’t want to hear this, but I suspect the Dems’ strategy might work. My hope is, though increasingly unlikely, a moderate Republican will become the presidential nominee. Then the Dems’ pitiful track record of government would really come back to haunt them.

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  J Bryant

Joe will get even more votes than he got the last time, he is the most popular US president ever

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

In a bitterly polarised race against a very controversial opponent (let us put it as that) Biden won.

I can hardly believe that you do actually want this senile buffoon, who is enabling if not himself orchestrating, the far Left whacko progressive policies on your benighted country.
Which sadly is fast becoming to other nations not a “city on a hill” which people look up to and respect, but a deranged and extreme society. Europe has extreme progressivism too, but at least they tend to have half decent public services and this political lunacy doesn’t occupy quite so much bandwidth. And then the “Inflation Reduction Act”, or the “Green New Deal” or whatever you want to call it this week: the EU, in this at least if not much else has entirely correctly called out as a vast protectionist measure.

And actually not much actual principled behaviour either, just mass naivety, nastiness, virtue signalling and hypocrisy on a grand scale. It is actually a tragedy. Trump must bear some of the blame for this, but the idea that extreme Left “woke” policies are popular except among a shrill hysterical Far Left fringe is laughable

Last edited 7 months ago by Andrew Fisher
Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

You need to listen to more people. The “extreme Left”, “woke” worldview is firmly entrenched in the minds of the most bland CEO and the most timid-looking bureaucrat.

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
7 months ago
Reply to  Albert McGloan

The latest opinion poll amongst students is pretty depressing too. Seems they are pro limiting freedom of speech.

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I don’t want him to win, I said he’s the most popular US president ever, thats a fact, he got more votes than saint Barry, and he will get even more votes the next time

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

He was given more votes by the cabal that rigged the election. The man has always been laughed at, not with. Now Washington [D] and [R] are maneuvering ways to get rid of the guy, if he doesn’t just keel over first.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

He’s certainly very popular with the CIA, FBI, DNC and about ten million deceased postal voters….

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

In fact, the DNC is printing those ballots now.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

That’s a Breznev/Xi joke right?

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Hahahahaha

mike otter
mike otter
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

I think that is very likely. Popularity won’t be the cause. The new votes will come from the millions of illegal migrants, stolen postal ballots and the American tradition of “vote early and vote often”. I expect there may be a few counting machines that develop faults leading to partisan outcomes. Both blocs in the US electoral system have records of outright fraud as well as Gerrymandering, carpet bagging and the use of the pork barrel. However ATM the Dems have the upper hand in this area. Even with a normal person replacing the man-child Trump its still uphill all the way for the GOP.

Last edited 7 months ago by mike otter
Thomas Wagner
Thomas Wagner
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Joe will get even more votes than he got the last time, he is the most popular US president ever

Are you out of your mind?

Simon Tavanyar
Simon Tavanyar
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Irony alert!

Studio Largo
Studio Largo
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Don’t think that approval ratings below 40% make him popular, let alone ‘the most popular US president ever’. Why don’t you two just get a room together?

David Yetter
David Yetter
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Evidence? I know, more people vote for him in 2020 than voted for any previous President. But were they voting for him (popularity) or against Trump (which could mean they simply loathed Biden less)?
Had I not, as a matter of conscience in 2020, just as I had in 2016, refused to offer my assent to either of the wannabe Caesars the major parties put up being President and voted for the Libertarian, my vote would have been cast on the basis of who I loathed less, and thus would have given no evidence of popularity.

Last edited 7 months ago by David Yetter
Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
7 months ago
Reply to  J Bryant

The big decider also might be, that several candidates will be running independently, most likely harming the Democrats more than the GOP

Last edited 7 months ago by Stephanie Surface
julianne kenny
julianne kenny
7 months ago

The Rhode Island candidate has just withdrawn ,probably more to follow.

Vaine Zaiven
Vaine Zaiven
7 months ago
Reply to  J Bryant

It will work (in the sense that plenty of otherwise-intelligent people, especially women, will be convinced to simply forget about all the problems that Dems are purposefully unleashing on the country for ideological reasons), although it might not work well enough.
Still, your hope is misguided, in two ways: one, Trump will be the nominee; and two: it doesn’t matter even if he isn’t. The Dems will turn any Repub candidate into a MAGA boogeyman, no matter how “moderate” this person may have been in the past.

Kat L
Kat L
6 months ago
Reply to  Vaine Zaiven

They’ll wheel out the old abortion is being outlawed trope; never forget how much women love abortion. Then they’ll whip out the oppression boogeyman for the rest and it will be a done deal.

Aden Wellsmith
Aden Wellsmith
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Interesting that the policy of shipping migrants to New York, to sanctuary cities is left off.

Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Fingers crossed

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Would that it were true, but the incessant anti-Trump propaganda, impeachments and indictments likely mean they will all vote Democrat, if for no other reason that to defeat Trump.

Daniel P
Daniel P
7 months ago

I think that each indictment makes him stronger.

The polls would suggest that that is true.

Nobody in the US likes the idea of one party using the legal system to attack the others leading candidate. It might be different were Trump being targeted by republican state AGs and prosecutors, but they are all democrats, and all have a clear agenda.

That, in my opinion, will drive some marginal voters to Trump.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

I really doubt that and I don’t see each indictment making Trump stronger, on the contrary he’s looking quite stressed out.

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

I agree. The establishment, whether out of fear, incompetence, or both, has spent two administrations trying to destroy Trump and it’s only made him more invulnerable, yet they keep doubling down on the same confrontational tactics. These people are no more competent than Trump is. They’re like the man who, upon finding himself at the bottom of a large hole, earnestly asks for a bigger shovel.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago

Lets hope so.

astralplainer
astralplainer
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Dominion voting machines and a sudden late-night surge in mail-in ballots will win it for Joe!

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

If Biden vs. Trump 2.0, a match up that a significant majority of Americans do not want to see, isn’t proof that the American election system at the national level is horribly broken beyond possible repair, I don’t know what is. I’m not sure it’s fixable at this point. Our best hope lies not in either party nor in any national candidate. Our hope lies in the system of federalism enacted by the founding fathers centuries ago that divides powers between state and federal authority. States can forge their own paths and enforce immigration laws if they so choose. Texas and Florida can, and do, bus migrants to so-called sanctuary cities where they are then stuck, and force those cities, which are the source of much of the bad policy, to deal with the problem. The US isn’t like the UK. Nobody at the federal level is going to ride to the rescue of California should their immigration policies turn their cities into dystopian wastelands. The most they’ll get is some taxpayer money thrown at the problem, whatever congressional politics will allow, and lately that isn’t much. The federal government can’t do anything about this for the same reason they can’t do much of anything else. The government is too divided and long ago lost the public trust, save for the true believers on either side, who are the ones who dominate primaries but probably don’t amount to 30% of the total population. This is why energizing the base is preferable to a broad appeal. As states increasingly diverge politically, people will vote with their feet and the federal government is likely to become even more bitterly divided and hopelessly deadlocked. Over the long term, the erosion of federal power (like that of the EU’s federal body) is pretty much inevitable given current trends. It will be a slow grinding process opposed by the establishment at every step, but it’s already well under way and I for one can’t see any way to reverse it, no matter how much the powers that be might want to. Congress can barely do anything and it’s likely to get worse, not better.

harry storm
harry storm
7 months ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Seems to me that Trump’s support comes from people registered to the Republican party, and he holds a 40-point lead over his nearest rival, DeSantis. So I don’t think it’s fair to say Trump v. Biden is a race a “significant majority” of Americans don’t want to see. I think a significant majority of Americans, including many democrats don’t want to see Biden. Republican voters to date are clear: they do want to see Trump get the nomination (though I would much prefer DeSantis).

Thor Albro
Thor Albro
7 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

Half of Republicans want Trump. But only 30% of the country identify as GOP. So, that’s 15% of the country. Most voters identify as independent,

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
7 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

I’ll grant that Trump has a core of supporters that don’t want anyone else, but that’s not even a majority of the Republican party. It is, at best, about half, and part of the problem might also be a lack of comparable alternatives. Trump’s biggest appeal is how he rails against a very unpopular political establishment. That’s how he won in 2016. Still, the establishment types and big money donors have seemingly not learned anything. They can’t seem to help themselves throwing their money and influence against Trump, which grassroots voters, especially the politically engaged types who vote in primaries, are very much aware of. When the donor class rallies behind DeSantis or Haley or Pence or whoever, it actually hurts that candidate’s chances and further elevates Trump. Of all the Republican candidates, Ramaswamy is the only one who seems to grasp any of this. He’s basically sustaining his campaign by deliberately poking the establishment and letting them attack him and build his popularity just as Trump did. He doesn’t expect to beat Trump. He’s aiming to be Trump’s running mate or setting himself up as the anti-establishment option in 2028. The incompetent and disconnected donor class has simply has failed to see the basic problem, that their support actually has a negative value, and their wealth can’t help them because money is just a multiplier for individual support, and when you multiply a positive by a negative, the result is a bigger negative. As for why the Democrats are backing Biden despite a clear voter preference for someone else among Democrats, I have no earthly idea. My best guess is that they’re terrified of a second Trump administration and think Biden, bland and inoffensive as his political career has been, is the best way to basically nominate an empty suit and make the election a referendum on Trump himself, as 2020 was.

Vaine Zaiven
Vaine Zaiven
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

They will vote for Biden next year. Under no circumstances whatsoever will any of them not vote for him. They will simply ignore the problems and their past statements (or, better yet, blame Republicans for them). There will be no accountability whatsoever. None.

Studio Largo
Studio Largo
7 months ago
Reply to  Vaine Zaiven

I’ve voted for Democrats in every election up to and including 2020 and I’m done with them and their far left totalitarianism. I highly doubt that I’m the only former supporter who feels like this.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

I don’t know where you get your information about democrats choosing not to vote. I don’t think that’s true.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

“Places like NYC, Chicago and LA that were all for sanctuary status when it cost them nothing are now losing their minds”
What utter, filthy hypocrites.

Kat L
Kat L
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

Sounds nice but I doubt if any of that is going to happen. The democrats will pull out some boogie man narrative and the rest aren’t affected or only watch corporate media for news. That’s why the percentages aren’t higher for disapproval.

Stephen Kristan
Stephen Kristan
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

“Out of control illegal immigration is going to kill the democrats next year.”
I doubt it. Count on some timely — mid to late October — news story about a woman suffering a terrible fate from her red state’s abortion restrictions. It’ll send the Dems flocking to the polls to vote blue. For Democrats, nothing trumps abortion rights.

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago

Its not a trap, its a plan. The plan is to destroy the West with immigration, its working

Dylan Blackhurst
Dylan Blackhurst
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

If it’s a plan, who is orchestrating it?

I’ll be honest, in my darker moments I have the same thought. But is there really a plan?!

I don’t think so. I think there are an awful lot of cowardly people in positions of power everywhere. Desperately trying to look like good people.

A lack of clarity of purpose appears to be the key issue. Politicians have forgotten who they serve. The people who voted for them and not the peoples of the world.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
7 months ago

Add to that a lack of basic competence in government and you have the current mess.

Panagiotis Papanikolaou
Panagiotis Papanikolaou
7 months ago

The plan is to change the demographics of one or two southern red states, then any elections will be basically guaranteed for the Democrats.
They will issue at some stage a “fill in a heartwarming, misleading title” Act or Bill that will grant voting rights to a large percentage of these illegal immigrants (plus some type of social benefits i would assume), who will then vote Democrats.

Anything else is just collateral damage.

Mark Goodhand
Mark Goodhand
7 months ago

The first potential title that sprung to my mind was the “American Dream Act”.
I was curious to see if that was already taken. Lo and behold:
American Dream and Promise Act
To authorize the cancellation of removal and adjustment of status of certain aliens, and for other purposes.”
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Dream_and_Promise_Act

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
7 months ago
Reply to  Mark Goodhand

I imagine the “The Land of Milk and Honey for Anyone not Willing to Assimilate, but Vote Democrat Act.”

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
7 months ago

Once they are settled, pay taxes and vote, they might change their minds like in Florida

Last edited 7 months ago by Stephanie Surface
Apo State
Apo State
7 months ago

Those in the US illegally will not *actually* vote, but they WILL happily give (or sell) their ballots to the friendly Democrat “community organizer” who comes around to their apartment/tent with goodies. It’s a system that has been working beautifully with the citizens in the past two federal elections.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  Apo State

That’s just a little paranoid.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago

Rubbish.

Elizabeth Hamilton
Elizabeth Hamilton
7 months ago

The plan is to make the whole world like an airport hallway and destroy national identities and boundaries, to equalise living conditions across the world and reduce the planet’s population

Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
7 months ago

“who is orchestrating it?”
The locusts have no king, yet they advance in ranks.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago

Ever heard of Cloward-Piven? Those orchestrating this are globalists: WEF, UN, ECHR, Bill Gates, Larry Fink, and the small group of billionaires who run the planet and fund the NGOs, foundations, think tanks, etc. They seek to destroy the productive middle class, take away our ability to amass modest wealth on our own (Fink’s BlackRock is buying up private housing all over the US, the biggest asset most people will have throughout their lifetimes). They want us all in 15-minute-city rentals stuck with public transportation. They don’t want us mobile, able to move from blue state horrors like CA to red state freedom and prosperity, as in FL. They seek a two-tier global system: them, and the serf class. “Overloadind the system” per Cloward-Piven is the means.

mike otter
mike otter
7 months ago

Cloward and Piven were typical of the mindless lefties in the 60s – i know because i was one – now long recovered. We though then that class and race war would somehow springboard us to Utopia. Michael Tomazsky(?) wisely noted years later “It didn’t occur to Cloward and Piven that the system would just ignore or squash rabble-rousing black people”. Attempts to resurrect Cloward/Piven are unlikely to work. Note that “wokeness” is just another attempt to revive Herbert Marcuse’s “repressive tolerance” doctrine which will ultimately fail today as it did in the 60s. An interesting side note here: Academics like Piven and Marcuse have “doctrines” or “theories”. Charles Manson had exactly the same wacko notions yet was rightly judged to be a mad criminal. Perhaps we need to review how the likes of Piven, Gaites & Marcuse are treated by society?

Ticiba Upe
Ticiba Upe
7 months ago
Reply to  mike otter

Now that you mention Charles Manson, maybe he wasn’t an wacko on his own…check out the CIA experiments called MKUltra….and all those lovely nazis we brought over here with their talent….and don’t forget the hardcore commies at the end of the Cold War…they brought talent too.
We are governed by psychopaths, incompetents, and social misfits, busy destroying the country…

Carmel Shortall
Carmel Shortall
7 months ago
Reply to  Ticiba Upe

MKUltra… Ted Kaczynski… Unabomber…

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago

That’s even more paranoid.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

I would think you’re just a clueless cog, but, given your after-the-fact comment history, you’re clearly just a paid troll.

Studio Largo
Studio Largo
7 months ago

Agree with you but I think it’s worse yet: with ordinary workers being increasingly replaced by AI and robots, the elites have decided that we’ve outlived our usefulness to them and we need to be gone.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
7 months ago
Reply to  Studio Largo

Yes, but we’re an adaptable species. Even AI “art” can’t replace human creativity, and our need for it. And robots can’t replace craftsmanship. Ever try to listen to an audiobook “read” by a robot? Stomach-turning. The world and its technology changes, and we change with it. We can either let the “elites” make us redundant, or we can rid ourselves of them. I’m sensing the latter is afoot.

starkbreath
starkbreath
7 months ago

Well it is possible to find hope in the existence of alternatives to the MSM narrative such as Joe Rogan’s podcast, the comedy of Dave Chappelle and Bill Burr and yes, unHerd, among others. They are viable proof that millions of people aren’t buying the poisonous woke bullshit.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
7 months ago

Well functioning, peaceful and prosperous societies are not ripe for totalitarianism.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Exactly.

Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
7 months ago

China is the rising hegemon that already ships the Fentanyl to the US. Joe works for whomever pays him.

Ticiba Upe
Ticiba Upe
7 months ago

Have you not noticed the number of Soros NGOs involved? Do you not know that he is orchestrating a borderless world? This is a man who should be banned from all countries and become a man without a country, forced to live in international waters….with Bill Gates as a companion….no communication ability…just floating out there never to set foot on land again…

harry storm
harry storm
7 months ago
Reply to  Ticiba Upe

like a real-life Emmanuel Goldstein, eh?

Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
7 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

When in 1999 The Economist wrote of Soros’s efforts to remake Hungary according to his values were they peddling an antisemitic, far-right conspiracy theory?

Vaine Zaiven
Vaine Zaiven
7 months ago

We saw the plan laid out pretty well a few weeks ago with the reports that Biden’s big idea was to send the migrants back to Texas and force them to stay there. I’d say that’s a pretty big tell as to what the plan is: to turn Texas (and other southern states) blue.

Micah Dembo
Micah Dembo
7 months ago

It is being promoted by China of course. Just ask yourself “who benefits”. Who else is building up there army and trying to corner the market on every technology under the sun? Who else has a bigger economy and more people and is growing fast meme than us. Who has hypersonic rockets.?Who is playing catch up.?

Elizabeth Hamilton
Elizabeth Hamilton
7 months ago

The World Economic Forum and the United Nations are among the international organisations orchestrating this. Read their documentation.

M. Jamieson
M. Jamieson
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

You know that South America is part of the West, right?

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  M. Jamieson

Is Africa, India, the Midle East, ect

The plan is to destroy the West, if you don’t notice it, you’re blind, if you do notice. They call you a conspiracy theorist

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
7 months ago
Reply to  M. Jamieson

The ‘West’ is Western Europe and North America, and perhaps Australasia too.

harry storm
harry storm
7 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

And Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

Jim Bocho
Jim Bocho
7 months ago
Reply to  harry storm

Japan, South Korea and Taiwan are allied with the West but not a part of it.

Elizabeth Hamilton
Elizabeth Hamilton
7 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

The “West” is what was called “Christendom” until the end of WWI.

M. Jamieson
M. Jamieson
7 months ago
Reply to  Jim Bocho

South American culture is as western as North American culture. They speak mainly European languages, and mainly practice Christianity. In fact they are typically more serious Christians than most North Americans.
Unrestricted migration from the south is absolutely an economic problem for the US, but it is not the same kind of cultural problem that some places in Europe are dealing with. If anything, the Hispanic population in the US is more likely to maintain traditional western values than many people born in the US who don’t seem to understand what those are, or sees them as damaging.

hayden eastwood
hayden eastwood
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

I think you give them more credit than is due: they have neither the ability nor the foresight to plan something like this.

Napoleon is reputed to have said: “Never attribute to conspiracy what can be explained by incompetence”

I would add to that, “or moral narcissism”.

In a world where technological superiority no longer exists, the only thing left for the ilk that Biden (and much of the Left in Europe) represent is an imagined sense of moral supremacy, without which they have nothing.

There is no plan, only “what feels good” in the moment, which makes it far, far worse than having a plan: , for if they had the ability to formulate one to begin with , they would also have the ability to make a new plan once the existing one was shown not to work.

Sadly they have neither the humility to admit failure nor the ability to respond to failure with anything resembling a plan.

Dylan Blackhurst
Dylan Blackhurst
7 months ago

That Napoleon quote is a corker!
Worthy of printing on a t-shirt

JJ Barnett
JJ Barnett
7 months ago

“Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity” …is a philosophical adage called Hanlon’s Razor (named after Robert J Hanlon).

Last edited 7 months ago by JJ Barnett
Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Would you please explain what the plan is and who created it. Thank you.

William Simonds
William Simonds
7 months ago

“The Plan” is to allow an unlimited flow of immigrants, combine that with election policies that prohibit the use of any form of identification in determining who can and cannot vote, provide everyone with absentee ballots mailed to an address whether they intended on voting or not, allow/encourage vote harvesting, and prohibit/discourage vote challenging by outside observers.
It’s not rocket science, people.
And it isn’t backfiring. The bright blue cities only chaff at the strain because that is their leverage in getting more money from the federal government to ease the burden. They don’t want fewer immigrants. They want to use the immigrants to get more federal money. And, of course, more money = more government.

Ticiba Upe
Ticiba Upe
7 months ago

Don’t be silly….the blue sanctuary cities were blindsided…they never expected to have to deal with the problem….

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
7 months ago
Reply to  Ticiba Upe

That’s right. They were counting upon the problem of uncontrolled mass illegal immigration being dumped in the laps of the disabled Republican governor of Texas – who had the effrontery to ship some to Sanctuary Cities – where they should have been welcomed – but now are not.

William Simonds
William Simonds
7 months ago
Reply to  Ticiba Upe

Of course they were. That’s the whole premise of NIMBY. But Rahm Emmanuel borrowed liberally from Churchill when he said, “You never let a serious crisis go to waste…and what I mean by that: it’s an opportunity to do things you could not do before.” Open borders has always been the Left’s ticket to their dream of a lasting plurality. But this “backfire” has opened the door to even more “opportunity” to seize a blank check for making blue cities even bluer. You watch. The end game is to funnel more money to deal with immigrants, not reduce either the flow or number of immigrants.

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago

Rubbish.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
7 months ago

“
a massive $46 billion border security reform
”
That’s the only thing you need to know about why Biden, or just about any modern politician, supports a cause. Follow the money. Always follow the money.
And the already debunked comment about Trump calling migrants “rapists” and referring to “legal” immigrants, but using the word “undocumented” to describe illegal aliens is telling of the author’s flagrant bias. To properly frame this argument, all one needs to highlight is the nauseating hypocrisy of a dark blue mayor proudly proclaiming his city as a sanctuary city one day, and then bemoaning the impact of such lunacy the next.

harry storm
harry storm
7 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Much like how the Minneapolis official who was all for defund the police until she was mugged and assaulted. Or the poor shmuck who called people dunces for claiming that guns in Philadelphia killed more people than COVID who was just shot and killed in a home invasion. (He didn’t have a chance to change his tune, but you know he would have.)

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Because no one expected a swarm of locusts. It’s truly terrifying in NY. Hospitals are overwhelmed with migrants giving birth and whatever else they need. Residents have to wait two weeks to get a covid and flu shot and whatever else they need. I’m a democrat and though not directly impacted (yet) I feel very disturbed because it feels as though all of the third world is coming here, en masse, and nothing can be done about it.

Studio Largo
Studio Largo
7 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

Buy the ticket, take the ride.

julianne kenny
julianne kenny
7 months ago
Reply to  Clare Knight

Latin A is not typically referred to as the third world these days. I think part of the impetus is to get a large workforce together for the rebuild project, to avert demographic collapse (less of an issue for US) and as a great gesture in the face of the rising BRICS coalition of countries.

Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
7 months ago

This is why I think China sponsors the current Democrat administration. Open borders already allow Fentanyl to be shipped in which kills 100,000 a year and devastated significant parts of the US. It’s a simple side-step to keep the borders open for people traffickers too and force another culture war between left and right which further weakens the capacity of the country to be governed.

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

China lol the people behind this all hold US passports

Ticiba Upe
Ticiba Upe
7 months ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

Well…there is some thought that China is repaying the west (UK) for the Opioid War and the destruction which that caused…

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  Ticiba Upe

I think you need to dig a little deeper in to the opium war, the Chinese know, so why not you

Deena Flinchum
Deena Flinchum
7 months ago

Obama’s reputation as Deporter-in-chief was bogus. He simply changed the way deportations were counted. Before his time in office, illegal entrants caught at/near the border were considered returns or removes and counted separately from deportations, which were those caught in the interior of the US. This change naturally greatly increased the number of ‘deportations’ because it combined all removals. Simple math.
Obama also pushed the Senate bill in 2013 that would have greatly increased the number of immigrants by granting amnesty – although it wasn’t call that – and making it easier to come to the US legally. A little known fact is that, while it appropriated money to help those granted amnesty reconcile their multiple Social Security accounts, many of which amounted to identity theft, it provided a fine of up to $10K for any government worker who had the audacity to alert a US citizen that an illegal alien had compromised his SS#, thus giving the citizen a heads-up to clean up his record before it caused him problems.
This is the way the Democrats looked upon citizens as opposed to those who had no right to even be in the US.

Michael Daniele
Michael Daniele
7 months ago

“The Maga Republican congressmen of my predecessor spent four years gutting the immigration system,” he said. And, in some ways, he was right. Trump and the House Republicans turned immigration into a political battlefield.
Delusional nonsense from both Biden and the author. It wasn’t a political battlefield when Reagan signed the  Immigration Reform and Control Act ?

Malcolm Webb
Malcolm Webb
7 months ago

I hope Keir Starmer is watching and learning.

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
7 months ago

It is backfiring only if you believe that what the U.S. is experiencing is not the intended result.

Douglas McNeish
Douglas McNeish
7 months ago

No problem. The propaganda wing of the Democrat Party in MSM will make no mention of “shut down fascist ICE, or ” tear down Trump’s wall.” And no more AOC crying for the cameras over “children in cages.”
“Sanctuary City? What’s that?”
There will be full cooperation to doctor the narrative, which will morph into “broken immigration system because Trump”, etc.

Christopher Chantrill
Christopher Chantrill
7 months ago

Let’s not make this too hard.
Democrats push immigration because they believe it increases their supporters. Activists push immigration because it’s the right thing to do.
Ordinary Americans want a government that defends the border and that protects the people.

Susie Bell
Susie Bell
7 months ago

Of course middle class southern states love mass immigration. Now Consuella with no home of her own can live over the garage with little more than board and food as recompense and be on hand 24 hours a day. She can look after little Jack and Lotty seven nights a week while Mummy and Daddy go out to their Democratic Immigration supporting dinners.
I would imagine that with the recent over supply of potential household staff coming over the border that the cost of being waited on for the new Californian aristocracy is lower than ever.

R E P
R E P
7 months ago

The analysis is sound. There is a lack of connection between policies and their impact in the USA. Most Democrats are unaware of the open southern border and believe that the fuss is caused by Republicans. If NYC can’t deal with 110,000 how has the country coped with 8 million plus? Trump is the only candidate that can lose to Biden but Biden won’t be the candidate…

Daniel P
Daniel P
7 months ago
Reply to  R E P

You really have to wonder about NYC and Chicago complaining so about the numbers they have received. NYC is 3% of the US population and they have received about 3% of the total illegals. AND…THEY are the sanctuary state for the love of God.

Maybe they should be asking where the other 97% ended up.

There is no good scenario for the democrats at this point. Biden is going to hold on as long as he can. Whether it is pride, stubbornness, a failure to realize his vulnerability or even just to make sure that his brother and son do not get convicted.

Now, the DNC is all in on Biden. They have made that clear. So, that being the case, if Biden refuses to step aside there is really nothing the dems can do. There is no good scenario for them at this point.

If Biden dies in office sometime early next year, they are left with supporting Harris who nobody wants and nobody likes. And then they have to retool their entire campaign. They will never convince her to step aside unless she thinks she will get humiliated and has another opportunity.

Even if Biden decided tomorrow to step aside, either the DNC is stuck with Harris or they end up with a mad scramble with Harris, Newsom and others vying for the nomination while RFK is the only one on a primary ballot. No way they back RFK. It would be a bloodbath.

Now, RFK is very likely to jump in as an independent. If he does then I would guess that the chances of a No Labels bid go up as well. Joe Manchin on the top with a centrist republican as his VP.

RFK alone probably buries Biden. No Labels with a cross party team would probably pull from both sides, maybe more from Trump. But, Trump’s base is so solid that in that scenario Trump wins anyway. There is no requirement to get more than 50% of the vote, just the enough votes to win the electoral college. Most states do not even apportion their electoral college votes. Trump could win in an electoral college landslide.

There was only ONE good scenario for the democrats, that would have been for Biden to honor his pledge to be a one term president and have announced last Feb, at the latest, that he was not going to be running. That would have given the party time to find candidates, have debates and select another, fully vetted nominee. But he did not.

Biden is not going age well over the next year. He is NOT going to look good next to Trump on a debate stage. He is not going to be able to avoid going out and doing speeches and rallies and traveling all over the place, getting on and off Air Force One, getting on and off stages, responding off the cuff to audience questions and questions from the press. I think we all know how that is gonna go.

The democrats have just made too many bad calls and it is too late at this point to correct for them.

Kat L
Kat L
7 months ago

First, Biden stated during a campaign stop that the country could absorb 3 million and how glad he was that the native anglo population would be diminished. Second the reform proposed by congress in 2013 was tied to granting amnesty to the millions already here; that is why it was shut down-which ties into the third point, Reagan did propose strong measures but they were never enacted so basically he gave amnesty to millions thereby creating an incentive to millions more while simultaneously not doing anything to deter future crossings and people gaming the asylum system.

Stephen Kristan
Stephen Kristan
7 months ago

The essayist writes: “…Trump, who announced his bid for the presidency in 2015” …warned… “darkly that migrants from Mexico are ‘rapists’ bringing drugs into the country.”
False. Trump’s off-the-cuff speechifying is often reckless and easily “misunderstood” by his legion of detractors. What he did say, for example, is:
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” “
They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
Sloppy and slanted, yes, but not the equivalent of Lee Fang’s paraphrasal.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
7 months ago

I didn’t subscribe to BeHerd.

Martin Johnson
Martin Johnson
7 months ago

“Corporate leaders, perhaps to conceal their support of Trump’s tax and regulatory policies,…”
NO, corporations did what they have done for decades: support massive immigration, ESPECIALLY illegals, to keep wages low and have an easily exploitable work force. (Who is more exploitable than someone in the country illegally, who can be fired and reported to the authorities?)
The Trump/GOP tax and regulatory policies were broadly popular among Republicans and independents, and the tax cuts among upper income Democrats, though they who might have been afraid to say so. No need for concealment.

mike otter
mike otter
7 months ago

There were a whole slew of comments on the subject of how and why Bidenis almost certainly going to win in 24 and they have all disappeared from this thread – this is a pity as they were intelligent and amusing compared to the wacko conspiracy theories that remain uncensored: Sure Gates, WEF, Blackrock etc are bad actors BUT so were Caligula, Bismark and Mao – none of whom had the competence to achieve global domination and who’s genocidal output died with them, only for the next man to come along and pick up the baton. History is NOT a conspiracy, its a c**k up.

D Walsh
D Walsh
7 months ago
Reply to  mike otter

If they continue to delete normal comments, I’m cancelling my sub, I suggest you all do the same, see you next thuesdays

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  D Walsh

Is that a new kind of day?

Clare Knight
Clare Knight
7 months ago
Reply to  mike otter

Exactly. The conspiracy theories are tiresome and silly.

Last edited 7 months ago by Clare Knight
Emre S
Emre S
7 months ago

USA doesn’t have any significant benefits to its citizens say unlike Sweden. It is not a nation based on an ethnicity – at least any longer. So why does USA have any border enforcement? Make it legal to enter to country and remove the need for work permits. Create the systems to distribute the entrants from the border towns not to overwhelm them. What’s the reason not to do this?

Daniel P
Daniel P
7 months ago
Reply to  Emre S

Man, are YOU off.
These migrants get about $2,200 a month from the feds. Many, if not most, receive free cell phones, access to healthcare and free transportation to where they want to go in the country.

In places like NYC, they get free housing.

In every city, they get free education for their children. Which, by the way is paid for out of local tax dollars. In addition, these school systems now need to hire more teachers, find more ESL instructors and more translators. All that costs money from the local community.

And that is just getting started. When you look at the fact that the vast vast majority of these migrants are unqualified for all but the most basic jobs, they will compete directly with the poorest in the country for work, thus, suppressing their wages. (One reason the construction, restaurant and hotel and agriculture industries love the open border)

As these people age and get citizenship, they will be entitled to social security and medicare. If younger, they may well qualify for medicaid, the healthcare paid for by the feds and the states for the indigent. They will also qualify for food stamps and if they have kids, CHIPS. They will qualify to compete for limited amounts of public housing and for Section 8 housing subsidies.

Their kids will qualify for subsidized tuition to college if they go in the future. Some of them may qualify for it now based on their income or lack there of and being considered to be independent.

We could also tally up all the costs to process these people and the costs for background investigations (anywhere from $10k to $20k a pop).

Then, how many of them are going to come in contact with the police? You need more cops. That costs money.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

There’s no way the federal government is going to reimburse the sanctuary states either until money is appropriated for border security. Blue states are and will pay dearly- higher taxes and cut services. Already NYC has cut police overtime, library hours and seniors’ meals.

Last edited 7 months ago by Cathy Carron
C Gabrysch
C Gabrysch
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

“These migrants get about $2,200 a month from the feds.”
That’s juist a flat-out lie. It’s a one-time grant made to resettlement agencies for refugee resettlements, and in no way applies to any of these migrants.

Emre S
Emre S
7 months ago
Reply to  Daniel P

If their working permits are limited that’s what they’ll have to do. They are not for the most part coming to the US for benefits. They’re coming to make a life for themselves and their families. Only a fool would go to US for benefits.
You’re forgetting that presence of cheap labour will in turn stimulate creation of new work places, and perhaps bring production back to US in the end lead to the creation of those much missed highly paid production jobs.
You can tally up the costs, but what happens when you weigh the benefits they bring to the country – if your calculations are correct at $20k a pop, then US benefits from a large transfer of wealth since it’s certain they’ll create more added value than that.

Last edited 7 months ago by Emre S
Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
7 months ago
Reply to  Emre S

Open borders make rich people richer by making poor people poorer.

Laurence Siegel
Laurence Siegel
7 months ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

That’s a nice Marxist/MAGA soundbite, but it isn’t true.
Open or semi-open borders increase inequality within countries and decrease inequality between countries. Inequality within countries increases because moderately poor workers from rich countries begin to have to compete with very poor workers from developing countries. Meanwhile, the developing countries benefit tremendously, bringing the standards of living in all countries closer together. India and China up, the United States and Europe down.
Still, I’d rather live at the 50th percentile in the U.S. or Europe than in India or China!
I am a free market economist with 40+ years of experience.

Last edited 7 months ago by Laurence Siegel
Shrunken Genepool
Shrunken Genepool
7 months ago
Reply to  Emre S

Sure ….if you want a massive multi-polar civil war and the destruction of what is left of civil society. If the USA doesn’t have significant benefits….why are so many people trying to get in? A BTW, the Swedish welfare state is contracting – and has been since the 90s, partly because they can’t afford it, and since 2016 because mass migration was on such a scale that it undermined the mutual identification (the sense of ‘we’) that is necessary to justify and legitimate generous tax transfers.

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
7 months ago
Reply to  Emre S

Why do you have walls in your residence? Or a PIn to access your bank
account? And why do shoppers act like animals on Black Friday when
Walmart puts a TV on sale for $99? The current immigration policy is like waving a raw steak in front of a starving lion. A steak paid for by those who are subject to the complex and myriad tax codes, only barely decipherable by attorneys.

Last edited 7 months ago by Warren Trees
Emre S
Emre S
7 months ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

By all means have a screening at entry, and apply the laws. I’m questioning why are there laws limiting entry and work for non-criminal people? What’s the point?

Kat L
Kat L
6 months ago
Reply to  Emre S

Well because the nation of my childhood actually meant something more than just foreigners coming here to get rich.