Short Views

The Great Clarifier

Not even President Trump’s most ardent admirers would claim that he is a “Great Communicator,” the title bestowed on the last resident of the White House who could plausibly be seen as governing, at least in some respects, as a conservative.  But Donald Trump might just be a great clarifier: His words and actions cause his opponents to reveal more of what they’re really thinking than they had in the past—perhaps more than is good for them.

Consider the ongoing debate over immigration.  President Trump’s immigration proposal, put into legislative form by Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, does appear to be what Trump said it was in the State of the Union Address: a genuine attempt at compromise.  Trump offered amnesty and a path to citizenship to those brought here illegally as minors.  This included both those who registered under President Obama’s constitutionally dubious DACA amnesty and those who didn’t.  The White House’s estimate of the number of those eligible for citizenship under this proposal was 1.8 million.  In order to ensure that this amnesty would not boost further illegal immigration the way past amnesties have, Trump asked for a substantial increase in funding for border security, including his promised Wall on the southern border, the elimination of the “diversity lottery” that awards visas without regard to a recipient’s...

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