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While America Sleeps

Ten years ago, it appeared that immigration restrictionists were poised to win some real political victories.  In 1992, Pat Buchanan had raised the previously untouchable issue in his presidential primary challenge to George H.W. Bush.  That same year, National Review, under the editorship of John O’Sullivan, joined Chronicles in calling for deep cuts in legal immigration.  Two years later, California voters ignored their media betters and voted overwhelmingly for Proposition 187, the ballot initiative that would deny certain welfare benefits to illegal aliens.  Bills restricting immigration had the support of numerous members of Congress.

By the summer of 1996, all of that momentum had collapsed.  After Buchanan shocked the political world by winning the New Hampshire primary, he was savaged by the media with a tidal wave of hate-filled rhetoric unseen before in American history.  Congress’s attempts to make mild cuts in legal immigration were defeated when 77 Republicans voted with open-borders Democrats.  In time, O’Sullivan would be fired from National Review, and the author of this collection would lose his regular column at the Washington Times.  Finally, in 1999, federal courts ruled Proposition 187 “unconstitutional,” a decision unopposed by California’s governing class.

Samuel Francis’s collection...

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