The Bipartisan Project to Secure the Border

If Obama sought money to build more fencing along the border, then a majority of Democrats would be for it. In fact, when George W. Bush (the presidential reputation Democrats are so keen on rehabilitating these days) signed the bill establishing hundreds of miles of fencing, at a cost of billions of dollars, the Fence Act passed the House 283–138 and the Senate 80–19. That’s a lot of Democrats. Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer was for it and now he is lying to America’s face about that. (He is also lying about the border situation being a “manufactured crisis.”) See the video below. It’s refutes the Democratic response to the president’s speech. (By the way, didn’t Schumer and Pelosi look and sound like aliens appearing on the viewscreen of a Star Fleet vehicle?)

The federal government has been continually building a security fence along the border since 1990 across Republican and Democratic administrations. It’s a bipartisan effort. The federal government started the project because a majority of Americans had turned against immigration generally in the late-1980s. The trend in opposition to immigration grew continually after immigration reform in the 1960s, a key piece of the elite war on labor and the old left. By the early 1990s, two-thirds of Americans wanted to see immigration curtailed (opposition spiked again after 9-11). The establishment did not want to see the level of popular opposition to immigration that occurred in the early 20th century that led to sharp immigration restrictions. Such immigration restrictions would interfere with the establishment’s globalist agenda. To knock down opposition to immigration, the government and media shifted the focus to the problem of *illegal* immigration successfully shaping public opinion by allowing the majority to express anti-immigration sentiment in way that strengthened popular support for immigration. The line in the Democratic Party was taken up by neoliberal operative Bill Clinton. This was an element in the broader New Democrat strategy. The strategy has worked quite well, reducing popular opposition to immigration by some 25 percentage points. Democratic opposition to new border fencing is about marginalizing Trump. Under a different president, we will see Democrats return to supporting stricter border control measures. Mark my words on that. 

I just read the recent polls on the current controversy and it is remarkable (yet expected) how public opinion is determined by party loyalty, opinion that would flip if their party took up the position. I am sorry to sound elitist, but Americans who follow the party line of either side of corporate-controlled political apparatus are zombies. Using what Chuck Schumer tells you today to determine how to think about an issue is embarrassingly naive. The reasons why people fall for this are explicable, but I have written enough for now. Just let me add that, while still a minority position, the polls show that support for the Trump’s proposal is gathering. With new reports coming out from partisan outlets like The Washington Post admitting there is a crisis as the border, popular support for more fencing may very well continue to grow.

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Andrew Austin

Andrew Austin is on the faculty of Democracy and Justice Studies and Sociology at the University of Wisconsin—Green Bay. He has published numerous articles, essays, and reviews in books, encyclopedia, journals, and newspapers.

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