Immigration Talks Spiraling On Campaign Trail
Immigration has been a hot topic thus far for 2016 Presidential candidates. There has been criticism with the way some candidates are discussing the matter of birthright citizenship - allowing children born in the U.S. to remain U.S. citizens.
The conversation surrounding immigration on the campaign trail is proving to be very controversial, particularly on the Republican side. Democratic strategist Estuardo Rodriguez says candidates are being forced to extremes as they discuss birthright citizenship.
"Their terms of art have been ‘anchor baby’, ‘illegals’," said Rodriguez. "The terminology is always hostile, the rhetoric is always negative."
Rodriguez says that candidates like Jeb Bush (R-FL), who previously championed compassion for immigrants, are being pulled further right to stay in the news. The rhetoric has gone so far as to changing the Constitution. Donald Trump (R) wants to repeal the 14th amendment, which protects birthright citizenship. Rodriguez thinks the notion is ludicrous.
"The more that candidates talk about it, the more, not only do candidates,
but do people that are listening, believe that that’s...easily done."
Rodriguez says the conversation isn’t hopeless because of candidates like Marco Rubio (R-FL) and John Kasich (R-OH), who have worked to find middle ground in the immigration debate. But he says in the early months of the campaign, no one will listen.
"They’re not going to get the camera time that they need," said Rodriguez. "Even if they were to come together and host a joint press conference, not when you’re competing against Donald Trump who knows all about television ratings."
Rodriguez doesn’t think the discussion will remain this way for too long. He says that at some point the campaign will transform from entertainment, to more of a bid to actually become President.
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