A Plea to the GOP
WHO AM I?
My name is Norman E. Adams. I have been a small business owner (an insurance agent) for 47 years. I have been active in the Republican Party for 47 years. In the last 30 years, due to the abortion issue, I have not missed a precinct caucus. I have been a delegate to every Republican Senatorial Convention and every State Republican Convention. I have been a delegate or an alternate to five National Conventions. I am proud to have served on the Texas Republican Party Platform Committee four times!
WHO ARE YOU?
This is a plea to my fellow conservative Republicans! Did you attend a Tea Party prior to the 2010 election? How many times did you call a so-called “blue dog” Democrat to try to convince him or her to vote against Obamacare? Are you sick of a government that cannot stop spending that seems intent on bankrupting our country, leaving it perpetually in debt? Are you happy our leaders are afraid to acknowledge that we are at war with “radical Islamists” and seem perfectly willing to grant unlawful combatants constitutional protections at the expense of sound intelligence and our safety? What will your reaction be the next time someone says there is no difference between Republicans and Democrats?
WHAT DO WE DO NOW?
Republicans cannot repeat the mistakes of the past. Between 2004 and 2008, Republicans lost the U.S. Senate, the House of Representatives, and the Presidency. Clearly, Republicans lost the faith of conservatives and the American people on a host of issues. One of the key issues was immigration.
It is no secret that immigration reform fractured the Republican Party. More than any other issue during George W. Bush’s second term, the immigration issue crippled the GOP coalition. Moreover, it reversed the growth of the party’s support in the Hispanic community. Richard Nadler extensively chronicled this movement from 2004 to 2008. Read his “Edge of the Wedge: Immigration and the Congressional Races of 2008” at www.amermaj.com to see how the Congressional candidates who embraced a hard-line restrictionist approach to immigration reform underperformed their opponents.
Barack Obama and the Socialist Democrats understand this very well. In 2009, they faced a united opposition to their efforts to impose cap and trade and the takeover of health care. On November 2, 2010, they paid a big price for their efforts. But, have no doubt, the Democrats know exactly how to drive a wedge through the heart of the GOP. That wedge is immigration reform. Accordingly, Republicans need to get on the same page on immigration. We need this not simply for an electoral advantage, but because it is the right policy.
We will not support amnesty that does nothing to solve our border security problem. Nor do we embrace mass deportations that will disrupt our economy and destroy millions of households with citizens and non-citizens living under one roof. Moreover, the GOP cannot afford more anti-immigrant rhetoric that splits our coalition and makes it impossible to compete for the growing Latino vote!
I believe Republicans can embrace an approach on immigration that avoids these two policy extremes. We can embrace an immigration policy that upholds our principles and values, but also puts us on a path for future electoral victories. Please hear me out!
A GOP POLICY SOLUTION: “ID ’em and TAX ’em”
Texans for Sensible Immigration Policy is a coalition I helped form to offer a “sensible” solution to our immigration problem. It is not amnesty nor is it deportation. I believe that illegal immigration is a problem. We are right to be concerned that individuals are coming into this country illegally, without identification and in some cases avoiding taxes.
I believe that a controlled flow of properly identified and properly taxed immigrant workers is a good thing. Having this flow will help us secure our border and manage our labor needs during times of economic growth and recession.
Everyone agrees we must control our borders. Texans for Sensible Immigration Policy supports the following procedures:
- Replace our 1936 Social Security card with a 21st century photo ID card that cannot be counterfeited.
- Require every noncitizen within our borders to submit to a positive ID, including DNA, photo, and criminal background check.
- Anyone with a violent crime history should be deported.
- Noncitizens, once properly ID’d and deemed eligible, would pay a fine where appropriate and be issued a ten-year Legal Status, allowing them to work and travel.
- After ten years they could apply for Permanent Residency. They would have to show ability to understand and speak English and have paid their fines and back taxes. Only then would they be able to apply for citizenship, with "back of the line" provisions.
- Noncitizens should not be allowed to work as independent contractors. They should only be allowed to work for “good faith” employers (that withhold and match taxes).
- Noncitizens with Temporary Legal Status should not receive Social Security and Medicare benefits. Their tax revenue should continue to subsidize our Social Security and Medicare funds.
- NO SHORTCUTS TO CITIZENSHIP, except for military service!
- Immigration quotas should be regulated on an as needed basis, with tax incentives for employers to hire citizens first.
WHY AMERICA NEEDS IMMIGRANT WORKERS
More than a few Republicans have bought into the anti-immigrant rhetoric that flows freely in print, on the web, through email, and on the airwaves. "We need to deport all of them. What part of illegal don’t you understand?” goes the mantra. I agree there is a problem that needs fixing. But let’s use the brains God gave us to find a good solution. We need these immigrant workers! Why?
- ECONOMICS. The Cato Institute has demonstrated that where the percentage of illegal immigrant workers is highest, the wages of American born workers has risen faster than those states with fewer immigrants. Economic activity drives wages and the need for workers higher!
- FERTILITY RATE. We need immigrants and their children!
- The minimum birth rate to sustain a population is 2.1%, yet America's fertility rate in 2009 was 2.01%!
- Every year more American born workers are retiring than are entering the workforce. This is especially true in lower skill trades.
- Since Roe v. Wade, we have aborted nearly fifty million children in the United States!
- It is simple mathematics, we have more low skilled jobs than we have American-born workers “willing” to fill them.
THE GOP CAN WIN THE HISPANIC VOTE
The GOP made in-roads into the Hispanic community in the 2000 and 2004 election cycles. It is not surprising. The GOP’s commitment to economic freedom and opportunity, the protection of the unborn, support for traditional marriage, and even educational choice resonates with the Hispanic community.
The reversal of this trend in 2006 and 2008 was the direct result of extremist policy positions (e.g., support for mass deportations) and inflammatory rhetoric about immigrants that repelled Hispanics. Republicans do not have to compromise their principles to attract the Hispanic vote. We proved that in 2000, 2004, and again in 2010!
Our success in winning back the Hispanic vote in 2010 provides us with a roadmap to follow. Republican Marco Rubio in Florida received 55% of the Hispanic vote. Republican Mark Kirk in Illinois received 48% of the Hispanic vote. Governor Rick Perry won 39% of the Hispanic vote in 2010. All three candidates outperformed the national average of 30%. In Texas, the GOP added five Hispanic members in the House and a member of the Texas Supreme Court. In addition, pro-life Democrat Aaron Peña has now joined the Republican Party.
The Texas GOP and, indeed, the national GOP should look to these races in Texas, New Mexico, Illinois, and Florida as a roadmap to victory. We should look to our newly elected Hispanic Republicans for leadership on retaining our gains among the Hispanic community and making new gains in the future.
2011 TEXAS LEGISLATURE LEADS BY EXAMPLE
In the 2011 legislative session, the Texas GOP embraced the issues that won the day for us in 2010: Fiscal restraint, reducing the size of government, reducing the property tax burden on Texans, opposing the federal take-over of our health care, and fighting to defend life and marriage.
The legislature wisely declined to follow examples of Arizona and Georgia in adopting anti-business, anti-immigrant measures that accomplish nothing substantive on the federal issue of immigration and drives wedges between the GOP and Hispanics and even private businesses. I believe Governor Perry and other new GOP leaders like Marco Rubio and Governor Susana Martinez of New Mexico have the right view.
The fact that the federal government has failed to fulfill its duty should not force states to impose unfunded mandates on local law enforcement. Doing so will only turn the immigration debate “toxic” in our states and waste valuable time in legislatures where other state issues need priority! But, don’t take my word for it. Talk to your newest Hispanic GOP members. We need to secure the border and have a workable immigration system. Adopting an Arizona-style approach will actually make those things harder to get, not easier.
My fellow Americans, fellow Republicans, I pray you will be moved to consider what I have said and give it a fair hearing. I believe this is the right approach on principle and politics. Republicans must take control of all three “houses” in Washington DC. We cannot afford to lose elections in 2012. Looking at the polls today, it is clear that Democrats have done themselves great harm by pursuing a radical left-wing agenda. But it will not be enough for Republicans to simply expect voters to come running back to them. The GOP needs to offer clear principles and clear solutions. A sound immigration policy is critical. It cannot be “amnesty,” nor can it be “deportation.” We need an immigration solution that will unite the GOP!
I pray God will move us to do what is necessary to right the wrongs in our great land. Stop the slaughter of the unborn. Defend us from evil, and move us to “do unto others.”
Please forward this to your friends. Please ask every elected official you know to email me expressing their support or their objection. I will gladly meet with every one of them!
If you know someone that wants to be added to my email list, let me know!
Thank God, I do have a job. You can reach me at
Adams Insurance Service, Inc.
800-438-8346 / 713-869-8346
PO Box 7011
Houston, TX 77248-7011