A little over a year ago I wrote about another Trump administration immigration policy failure. Trump wanted to add a census question that asked if the respondent was a citizen of the U.S. Adding that question should have been a simple administrative procedure since conducting the census is an executive branch function.
But nothing is simple where Trump is concerned.
The administration should've been prepared for the inevitable court challenge and should've had a top-notch legal team that supported the effort. Instead - in keeping with usual Trump HR policies - it appeared to have carefully selected a team of Resistance collaborators to defend the question.
The Supreme Court rejected Trump's appeal with Chief Weathervane John Roberts explaining that the Trump administration could try again if it came up with a justification that Roberts liked personally.
The left's objection to Trump's question and subsequent lawsuit was never about intimidation. Claiming respondents would be too afraid to fill out the questionnaire and subsequently not be counted was just another leftist lie.
What really worried Democrats was the possibility immigrants in the country illegally would answer the question honestly, thereby letting the gato out of the bag. American citizens would suddenly see for themselves the astonishing number - upwards of 29 million - living permanently in the U.S.!
Even worse, the left could not dispute the count because it came from the illegal immigrants themselves.
Trump instinctively knew losing was a big problem. Voters might cut him some slack on building a giant border wall. They could understand how deporting millions of illegal immigrants would require some preparation time. But dropping the ball on a nine-word question was something else again.
Trump fell back on Twitter, promising he was "absolutely moving forward" with the question. When nothing else was heard I assumed another important immigration policy initiative had come a cropper due to Trump's short attention span and Jared's malign influence.
I was wrong.
This week Trump bypassed The Supremes and issued an executive order announcing Uncle Sam will graciously locate Latin America's citizens, but the illegal immigrants would not be included in the count that determines how many congressional representatives each state is allowed.
Sanctuary states are outraged again! Counting the class of lawbreakers they have welcomed across the border adds to those state's political power at the expense of conservative states who don't think coddling international criminals is sound policy.
Rewarding the likes of California, New York and Illinois for entering into a conspiracy to undermine U.S. immigration law would be like United Airlines giving frequent flyer miles to stowaways who hid in the cargo hold.
Kris Koback, a U.S. Senate candidate in Kansas who believes American citizens come first, told Breitbart, "Trump is 'absolutely correct' to exclude illegal aliens from congressional apportioning. 'Our constitution does not contemplate representing people whose very presence is illegal.'"
The statement Trump issued in connection with his order put the issue very succinctly, "My Administration will not support giving congressional representation to aliens who enter or remain in the country unlawfully, because doing so would create perverse incentives and undermine our system of government. Just as we do not give political power to people who are here temporarily, we should not give political power to people who should not be here at all."
We also shouldn't be providing illegal immigrants with jobs, welfare, healthcare and their children's education, which are "perverse incentives" written large, but that's a column for another day.
Unfortunately for Trump and the immigration patriots who support him, there's a glaring intensity mismatch on the whole immigration issue. The left is united. Encourage illegal immigration and resist enforcement of immigration law in an effort to boost the population in your states and increase representation in the House.
Step two is using that illegally increased representation to pass laws legalizing up to 29 million formerly illegal immigrants with a stroke of Gropey Joe Biden's pen. Three is never lose another national election for at least a generation. After which, it won't make a difference because the U.S. will be well on its way to becoming another in a long line of failed socialist states.
Before Trump, conservatives lost every immigration conflict because our country club conservative presidents didn't care and their chamber of commerce donor class wanted more cheap, docile labor at the expense of American citizens.
And now we live in a Press-1-for-English country that none of us wanted. Our elite overlords have more in common with the ruling class that runs Mexico. Both love Mexico and have nothing but disdain for most of America.
Like it or not, Trump is our only, imperfect hope for fighting back on immigration. If Assisted-Living Joe wins in November, the census will be counting every illegal immigrant in the land and many of their relatives back home.
Copyright 2020 Michael Shannon, distributed by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.
Michael Shannon is a commentator and public relations consultant, and is the author of "A Conservative Christian's Guidebook for Living in Secular Times." He can be reached at [email protected]