Politico was in such a state of panic over what they perceived as President Joe Biden's dwindling election chances in 2024 that they were hyping an election gimmick promoted by political author Ruy Teixeira, that came off as nothing more than a desperate election ploy of too little, too late. It was a mark of this desperation that it was the lead story of Friday's Politico Playbook, "The case for triangulation on immigration."
After almost three years of largely putting little weight on the border crises during the current administration, Politico writers Ryan Lizza, Eugene Daniels, and Rachel Bade had finally, finally discovered that it existed... mainly because the issue was politically hurting Biden.
...one of the most striking and consistent findings of 2023 polling is that voters give Biden especially poor marks for how he’s handling immigration, where his average approval rating is 34%.
A Marquette Law School poll released yesterday continues the trend. Asked which 2024 candidate would handle immigration better, Trump holds a 50% to 27% advantage over Biden among registered voters — the largest gap between the two candidates of all the issues tested, just as in numerous other polls this year.
The Biden campaign has a new plan to address this vulnerability: attack Trump’s extremist immigration policies.
The problem with the Biden campaign plan, as the authors point out, was that 'Orange Man Bad' doesn't really work as a campaign tactic.
“What did [Hillary Clinton] run on?” asked RUY TEIXEIRA, co-author, with JOHN JUDIS, of the new book, “Where Have All the Democrats Gone?” ($28.99), during an interview on this week’s Playbook Deep Dive podcast.
“It was all about how bad Donald Trump was, what a bad person he was, how sexist he was, how racist he was,” Teixeira said. “He talked about issues. You may not have liked how he talked about issues, and he may not have been very specific, but he talked about issues, whereas Hillary talked about Bad Orange Man.”
And now that Teixeira had been cited, the nervous Politico writers grasped upon his advice for a very gimmicky election ploy of triangulation by pretending to suddenly be concerned about the border after years of downplaying that crisis.
In 2002, Teixeira and Judis famously published “The Emerging Democratic Majority,” a book that seemed to predict the coalition of minorities, women, young people, knowledge workers and the party’s traditional working-class base that propelled BARACK OBAMA to the White House in 2008. Their new book, out this month, tries to explain why many of the working class voters in that coalition have since abandoned the Democrats, and the party’s handling of immigration policy tops their list of culprits.
Teixeira and Judis argue that progressives have become victim to what they call the “Fox News Fallacy” — that if the conservative media machine seizes on an issue, it must be illegitimate.
Teixeira sees it in the current immigration debate: “People streaming over the border who are not legal immigrants — this is not a good thing! … [Y]ou’re not going to persuade anybody against that point of view if you simply act like the problem doesn’t exist and this is all made up by the satanic, anti-democratic, quasi fascist people and the other side.”
So, Democrats were supposed to take advice from someone who appeared to endorse lax immigration enforcement in his 2002 book as revealed by Atlantic magazine:
In 2002, the political scientist Ruy Teixeira and the journalist John Judis published a book, The Emerging Democratic Majority, which argued that demographic changes—the browning of America, along with the movement of more women, professionals, and young people into the Democratic fold—would soon usher in a “new progressive era” that would relegate Republicans to permanent minority political status. The book argued, somewhat triumphally, that the new emerging majority was inexorable and inevitable.
Since that plan failed to help the Democrats, Teixeira had a new shtick: Border Triangulation aka pretend to care about the border for purposes of the election.
Biden wants $60 billion in aid for Ukraine before the end of the year, and Republicans in Congress are demanding border security provisions, including tightening asylum standards, in return. The White House has signaled it knows a deal is necessary.
Burgess Everett reported yesterday on the most likely kind of compromise that could emerge from the current Senate talks: “[S]ome negotiators aren’t envisioning a deal they expect would appeal to progressive Democrats or conservatives who oppose funding Ukraine at all. An ideal Senate bill, in their view, would pass the chamber via the center-left and the center-right.”
From the Teixeira-Judis view, the GOP is offering Biden a priceless opportunity: He unlocks aid to Ukraine, passes an immigration bill that he can campaign on to mitigate Trump’s biggest advantage, and he gets credit for another big bipartisan deal.
A big bipartisan gimmick chock full of billions of dollars spent on a war in exchange for an immigration deal that likely would be as fully enforced as existing immigration laws by folks such as Alejandro Mayorkas. Such a deal! If only enough gullible Republicans can be found to swallow the highly laughable triangulation gimmick.
Interestingly, there was not one mention in the story about the one person who was assigned to focus on this issue: Border Czar Kamala Harris.