MSNBC's Chuck Todd: GOP Could Be Doomed in 2016, 2020 and 2024

Continuing the liberal media narrative that the Republican Party is doomed without passing comprehensive immigration reform, MSNBC’s Chuck Todd on Tuesday insisted that the party is in a virtual political trap that it will not find its way out of any time soon.

The Daily Rundown host stated that the Republicans are “in the worst political box I've ever seen. If they pass immigration reform they will split their party in two and it could be disastrous for them for a few years, if not a decade.” Furthering this line of thinking, Todd argued that the short-term prospects for the Republicans in presidential elections are catastrophic [MP3 audio here; video below]:

If they don't [pass immigration reform], it will probably cost them the presidential election, if not in ‘16–not just in '16 but perhaps 2020 and 2024. Here’s the thing: compromise only happens when both sides believe there is a pure political benefit at some point for them. Republicans believe that they will have bigger problems internally if they address immigration than if they don't.

Todd insinuated that one of the major problems for Republicans is that they are hostile to Hispanics and immigrants more generally. He claimed that “the scars of anti-immigration rhetoric will take years to heal with the Hispanic community. So the longer this goes on, the longer it’s gonna take to heal.”

Earlier in the segment, the Daily Rundown host responded to John Boehner’s suggestion that the Congress and the American people don’t trust the President to enforce the laws already on the books: “The argument to kill legislation because the President can’t be trusted to implement it strains credibility. If you can’t trust the President, why pass any laws? It’s just the latest Republican straw man for why immigration reform for them seems impossible politically.

While the media have been insistent that the Republicans’ supposed lack of appeal to Hispanic voters has doomed them in past elections and will continue to do so in the future, the idea doesn’t hold up. In fact, Mitt Romney would have lost to Barack Obama in 2012 even if he had captured 70% of the Hispanic vote. But journalists often ignore this fact. It's easier to portray Republicans as simply hostile to minorities.

The relevant portion of the transcript is below: 

MSNBC
The Daily Rundown
July 1, 2014
9:04 a.m. Eastern

CHUCK TODD, host: And remember this request for more funding, and more help and more resources is totally separate from the larger immigration debate. So that's a vote the House is going to have to take up. And how they do it this year, I have no idea. But it's unclear how much more the President can do on the other immigration issues. The White House says the President decided to act on his own after Speaker Boehner told him last week that officially the House would not vote on any immigration legislation this year. Now, Boehner responded to the President in a statement yesterday saying this, quote, in our conversation last week I did tell the President what I've been telling him for months, the American people and their elected officials don't trust him to enforce the laws as written. Until that changes, it’s gonna be difficult make to make progress on this issue. The argument to kill legislation because the President can’t be trusted to implement it strains credibility. If you can’t trust the President, why pass any laws? It’s just the latest Republican strawman for why immigration reform for them seems impossible politically. Before that, remember the roadblock was border security.

JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH): The American people expect that we'll have strong border security in place before we begin the process of legalizing and fixing our legal immigration system.

TODD: Border security funding is actually up under President Obama. Last year Congress funded customs and border protection, $11.7 billion, 64% more than in 2006. The number of border patrol agents is up from just under 11,000 in 2004 to over 21,000 last year. Truth is that immigration reform is dead because House Republicans are afraid of the politics. Pure and simple. They are in the worst political box I've ever seen. If they pass immigration reform they will split their party in two and it could be disastrous for them for a few years, if not a decade. If they don't, it will probably cost them the presidential election, if not in ‘16–not just '16 but perhaps 2020 and 2024. Here’s the thing: compromise only happens when both sides believe there is a pure political benefit at some point for them. Republicans believe that they will have bigger problems internally if they address immigration than if they don't. Republicans are probably already too far down the road for immigration reform to be any political advantage for them in the short term. The scars of anti-immigration rhetoric will take years to heal with the Hispanic community. So the longer this goes on, the longer it’s gonna take to heal. If you have been watching Boehner closely, this moment has been building for at least the last six months. By February, the politics of immigration reform were so bad that a former advocate, Idaho’s Raul Labrador, said if Boehner touched immigration this year, it would cost him his gavel.

Connor Williams
Connor Williams
Connor Williams is a contributing writer for NewsBusters.