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4-D Chess? DACA Final Test If Trump Knows What He’s Doing
(Spoiler: Answer Is No If He Doesn’t Propose Taxing Remittances)
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We will finally find out if the memes are real. In President Trump’s magisterial August 31, 2016 campaign speech on immigration in Arizona, he vowed he would “immediately terminate President Obama’s two illegal executive Amnesties.” Today, President Trump says he is offering Democrats a “wonderful deal” on DACA, including a pathway to citizenship. The Donald Trump of the campaign would undoubtedly have called it Amnesty. But could there be a more complicated agenda?

This is a classic case of dealing from weakness, the opposite of what so many patriots who supported Donald Trump were hoping for. The DACA Amnesty was completely unconstitutional, something for which President Obama would have been impeached if America was still a self-respecting country, if Republicans were a real political party rather than controlled opposition, and if the “rule of law” was anything more than a punchline.

Electing Donald Trump president was a desperate attempt by the Historic American Nation to rebel against its planned dispossession, a “storming of the cockpit” to remove the sociopaths who captured the state and planned to kill off the nation. But President Trump’s decision to award concessions to DACA recipients removes the whole purpose of his campaign. If America is to be killed off, better it had come at the hands of Hillary Clinton.

A DACA Amnesty would be catastrophic, almost regardless of what “compromise” is reached. There is no upper limit on the number of illegals to be given Amnesty under President Trump’s proposal and there’s no guarantee any wall would actually be built under current legislation, just that money would be set aside.[Trump’s Draft Amnesty: Unlimited, Forever, And Before A Wall Is Built, by Neil Munro, Breitbart, January 27, 2018]

Given judges’ recent practice of simply inventing immigration law based on their feelings and/or ethnic grievances, we’d undoubtedly get a ruling from a Circuit Court telling us the Founding Fathers never intended for America’s borders to ever be defended. Besides, money for border security has been available since 2006, and Republicans such as Kay Bailey Hutchinson and John Cornyn made sure it wasn’t spent on any meaningful barriers. Who is to say the same thing wouldn’t happen again?

Yes, it’s theoretically possible to imagine certain policy gains for which it might be worth granting Amnesty for some DACA recipients— gains such as ending chain migration and Birthright Citizenship. But “funding for a wall” is not one of them. Indeed, gaining money from a border wall shouldn’t even be regarded as a concession at all. Democrats can easily and accurately mock President Trump for even asking for this money, as candidate Trump repeatedly vowed (and his supporters joyfully repeated) Mexico would be paying for the border wall.

But President Trump could still ensure this, tomorrow, using an idea his own campaign suggested. All he would need to do to completely reverse this debate is to declare once again, perhaps during the upcoming State of the Union, that a tax on remittances must be passed to pay for a border wall. Congressman Mike Rogers of Alabama has already introduced such a bill—a bill the White House knows about. [White House weighing a tax on remittances to Mexico to fund border wall, by Gabby Morrongiello, Washington Examiner, August 31, 2017]

And this is why I can’t help but wonder if President Trump is in fact playing the “4-D Chess” that his more slavish supporters tell us he is capable of.

Trump’s recent tweets did suggest his Amnesty proposal was simply a way to flush out the Democrats’ extremism, offering the Democrats almost everything they could reasonably want and watching them self-immolate [Trump: Amnesty Offer Intended To Expose Democratic Cynicism, by Neil Munro, Breitbart, January 27, 2018]. And self-immolate they have done, with the likes of Nancy Pelosi accusing President Trump of offering a white nationalist proposal—rhetoric from which Red-State Democrats had to swiftly distance themselves [Manchin: We don’t need Pelosi’s type of rhetoric on immigration, by Julia Manchester, The Hill, January 28, 2018]. Some of the Left’s more excitable pets even called it a “Legislative Burning Cross,” a claim earnestly repeated by the Main Stream Media but which can only inspire incredulous laughter among actual Americans [Immigration Activist Calls Trump Immigration Plan A ‘Legislative Burning Cross,’ by Justin Caruso, Daily Caller, January 26, 2018].

The Left does seem to be losing its ability to create a united narrative to confront President Trump, and it is still reeling from its recent defeat in the showdown over the government shutdown. The “Trump is an insane moron” narrative, which received additional momentum from Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury,” has taken a hit because of that tome’s rapidly declining credibility, which now has culminated in the absurd charge Nikki Haley is having an affair with the president [An affair with Trump? Nikki Haley on ‘disgusting’ rumors and her rise to a top foreign policy role, by Eliana Johnson, Politico, January 26, 2018]. Now, the Left seems to be switching back to the “Trump is a devious tyrant” narrative, as CNN and other organs of the Opposition Party are attempting to say Trump somehow “obstructed justice” by NOT firing Robert Mueller [The Answer To Whether Trump Obstructed Justice Now Seems Clear, by Jeffrey Toobin, The New Yorker, January 26, 2018]. In the Left’s world, Trump thoughtcrime is now sufficient to impeach the president.

Of course, impeachment is ultimately a political, not a criminal procedure. President Trump will be impeached if the Democrats retake Congress, if only because the Leftist base will demand it. For that reason, if President Trump is indeed playing “4-D Chess” just by flushing out Democratic extremism, he’s being too clever by half.


It’s not enough to show the Democrats are “extreme,” when Leftist politicians can reliably count on the MSM to paint them as sensible moderates and Republicans as Nazis. President Trump actually has to flip the Narrative on policy grounds, advancing popular proposals that Democrats have to make a concrete response to. And he can’t demoralize his own base when the most difficult struggles of his presidency still lay ahead.

For immigration patriots, there is a clear signal as to whether President Trump is playing “4-D Chess” or whether he is being taken for a ride. The signal: whether the remittance tax makes an appearance in the near future. Such a proposal would instantly force the Democrats on the defensive and change the whole debate over border funding and the negotiations over DACA. But if President Trump does not make this proposal, he’s trapped in a negotiating process he truly cannot win.

President Trump could indeed shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose supporters. He can attack the NFL. He can have an affair with a porn star. For all I care, he can go the full Oliver Cromwell during the State of the Union and have half of Congress arrested—those who refuse to honor their constitutional oath to defend American laws deserve far worse.

But if President Trump grants Amnesty, he’s a one-term president.

In fact, odds are he won’t even be that, because and when the Democrats impeach him over made-up charges, no one will be there to defend him.

James Kirkpatrick [Email him] is a Beltway veteran and a refugee from Conservatism Inc.

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Donald Trump, Immigration 
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  1. I predict Trump will cave, or keep extending the six month waiver as long as he’s president. He’ll probably grant them amnesty (plus everyone tangentially related), and then America will be overwhelmed by an insurmountable voting block of former illegals. More repressive, big government politicians will be elected.

    All of this will be due to the overused platitude, It’s not who we are. Then this nation will turn sharply in a direction the founders never intended to be (as if it already hasn’t!).

    USSA, United Socialist States of America. That’s actually not who we are.

  2. fenster says:

    I don’t buy the political analysis here. Kirkpatrick says “it’s not enough to show the Democrats as ‘extreme’” and that the winning political strategy is to go much further in actual policy proposals.

    The problem with this, I think, is that immigration patriots are to the right of the “gut” on this issue, just as the amnesty-first crowd is to the left. Both sides have the problem of holding on to its base if events move to the seemingly obvious compromise position: a version of yes to those here already with a version of no to future flows based on illegal actions, chain migration and the diversity lottery. Seems to me that is what the recent Harvard-Harris poll is telling us.

    Immigration patriots and the pro-amnesty crowd will both no doubt threaten if things are more watered down than they would like, and will predict a revolt of their respective bases. Maybe, and maybe it is smart for each to hold their leaders’ feet to the fire in the name of what they deem holy. But that in itself is a political move, not an analysis. As far as analysis is concerned I think Trump has it about right.

  3. Trading away the ability to remove illegals in the here and now for anything in the future is a bad, bad deal. No present Congress can bind a future Congress–walls can be torn down, chain migration reinstated, remittance taxes repealed. But the DACA colonists stay. How in the world could Donald Trump begin deporting them, after having stated that they are worthy of a path to citienship? At this point I wonder if a Trump impeachment and removal would be all that bad–how would Pence be worse?

    • Replies: @MarkinLA
  4. “President Trump could indeed shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose supporters.”

    At this point, that’s true. The Trumpeteers do indeed love them some Donald. Before the missile attack on the Syrian air base, Trump did still have some principled supporters who would have been turned off by this kind of dealing.

    Now, he can do whatever he likes and his core group of koolade drinkers will defend him, but he’s basically a lost cause to thinking Americans who may not have joined the rabid leftard Trump haters, but who have moved to just having no regard for him.

  5. MarkinLA says:
    @Diversity Heretic

    How in the world could Donald Trump begin deporting them, after having stated that they are worthy of a path to citienship?

    Well, of course it won’t happen. but the answer id to deport the parents and the DACAs all at the same time for the sake of family reunification. Deportation with a heart.

  6. How do we save Trumpism from Trump? Can one in this day and age trust anybody in America to keep his (OK, her too) word? Trump has forgotten everything, including the commas, of his inaugural
    speech. And America is drowning in a swamp of mendacity at high levels and imbecility everywhere else.

  7. utu says:

    Only a war or strong stand on immigration can save Trump presidency. Either Trump will go with the Deep State, the Swamp, the Lobby or with the People. My bet is on war because this is the path of the least resistance. It will be agreeable to the Deep Sate, the Swamp and the Lobby.

  8. KenH says:

    The offer made by Trump is not only a horrible deal for immigration restrictionists, but it betrays his base and breaks campaign promises. I’m of the belief that Trump would sign this deal and from things I’ve read it has almost unanimous Republican support in the Senate but very little support in the House.

    We may as well call this terrible bill the Cohn-Javanka-Lyin’ Donald immigration reform act of 2018.

    The problem of illegal alien children is not a complicated or intractable problem that requires special legislation to fix. We already have laws on the books that requires us to deport them, so Trump and his administration need to grow some balls and just deport with reckless abandon, but as poster #1 said Trump will most likely just keep granting waivers throughout his first term.

    Trump needs to stop spending most of his time kissing Israel’s ass and threatening Iran and every nation Israel doesn’t like and start focusing on immigration which is the signature issue he got elected on.

  9. “If President Trump grants Amnesty, he’s a one-term president.”

    That sounds great, very natural, very logical. But, Mr. Kirkpatrick, who will replace Trump? Who will be the other choice, the Democratic candidate, in 2020? Not Hillary. And the Democratic/MSM machine will never let Bernie head up the Party. Oprah?

    • Replies: @Diversity Heretic
  10. @Grandpa Charlie

    Kamala Harris. One term senator just like Barack Obama, but with executive experience as an attorney general. Mixed race–former girlfriend of Willie Brown. Reasonably attractive. Will be in her mid-50s versus a Donald Trump in his mid-70s in 2020. She can hold together the coalition of the fringes and Trump’s base will stay home in disgust.

  11. That Oliver Cromwell line was superb,

    but alas, no King to behead.

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