The Moose avers that the Republicans will define their party this summer.
Now that the Senate has passed the immigration bill, the stage is set for a battle for the soul of the Republican Party. Will it be an inclusionist party that reaches out to the Latino community? Or, will it succumb to the restrictionist illusion and perhaps doom itself to minority status?
The fight over the immigration conference committee will reveal the deep divisions within the party. It is a battle that may leave scars on the party for many years to come. And the base of the party is as inflamed as it was back in 1990 when the first President Bush raised taxes.
And what will be the role of the President? He is cast in an unfamiliar role -standing athwart the base yelling stop. To his credit, the President has firmly stood with the inclusionist faction of his party in support of a path to legalization for illegals residing in the U.S. But, this position is as anathema to a large part of the base as raising tax rates.
The Moose has always thought that there is far more than meets the eye concerning the base's opposition to "amnesty." This is a case of transference where the right has displaced all of its anger and frustration over spending and the war on this issue. The right is truly in revolt.
And what of the Democrats? They will be merely observers standing on the sidelines enjoying the GOP fratricide.
This should be a very interesting summer, indeed. --