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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb. 25, 2005 / 16 Adar I, 5765

Closed Door?

By Jonathan Tobin


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GOP split on immigration makes for an issue with a confusing set of allies



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | More than three months have passed since the conclusion of the 2004 presidential election. But 2005 is starting to sound a lot like the bitter year we just passed through. Issues such as Social Security reform and tax cuts are serving to keep partisan juices and invective flowing.


Yet for liberal Jews and their organizations, which have not been shy about demonstrating their eagerness to trash President Bush's domestic agenda, there's at least one issue on which they are finding themselves on the side of the White House, and that's immigration.


But the question for them, and for the administration, is how much of a priority they are willing to place on it in an era where a post-9/11 backlash against possible terrorist infiltration has combined with traditional xenophobia to make immigration a hot potato.


And on that point, the indications aren't entirely positive. For Bush, Social Security reform and passing the budget are obvious priorities. But the congressional GOP may try to force Bush to give up immigration reform to get support on other bills.


On the other side of the aisle, liberal activists are so focused on refighting the last election that many are unwilling to use their muscle to back the president, even on an issue that's always been one of the Jewish community's core principles.


And that's a shame, because to the consternation of many in his conservative base, the president has put himself on the line to oppose further efforts to restrict the flow of immigrants and refugees into the country.

INTERVENTION FOR REFUGEES
A year ago, Bush proposed a plan to effectively offer a form of amnesty to illegal immigrant workers. Though the proposal attracted little support, he remains undaunted. As part of this year's agenda, the president is again seeking to provide visas to some of the nation's estimated 10 million undocumented workers.


On the question of admission of refugees, it took Bush's personal intervention to sharply increase the number of refugees permitted to enter the United States.


Refugee admission has been severely restricted since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. This has left many of those who seek to flee religious and political persecution abroad waiting, often under intolerable conditions, in refugee camps around the world.


Even worse, those who came to this country seeking asylum without first getting a visa have been kept under conditions even a U.S. government study has admitted are poor.


The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom reported earlier this month that those fleeing persecution are generally treated as criminals upon arrival here, and are often exposed to the hazards of prison life, a practice that puts women and children in danger.


Fortunately, White House action on the issue has caused the State Department to raise the number of persons given asylum in this country by more than 20,000 next year. Ironically, this was set in motion by the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives - one of the administration's voices that is least loved by liberal Jews - which set up meetings for the president with two refugees whose stories help galvanize him into taking action.


But at the same time, many conservative Republicans are opposed to Bush's initiative. And, led by Wisconsin Republican F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, they have been pushing measures to further restrict the activities of illegals, such as obtaining driver's licenses.


The rationale given by Sensenbrenner for this is that it would prevent another attack by "disrupting terrorist travel." But it also included a provision making it easier for judges to throw out asylum-seekers.


The notion that making it even harder for people to come to this country will stop the flow of terrorists is a joke. Nor will punishing those who came here without documentation help the situation. It is the rigidity of our system that has helped create the immigration chaos that potentially allows terrorists into America.


What we have now is a set of unenforceable laws that vainly attempt to thwart the demands of the market. It also diverts resources away from terrorist interdiction to the futile war to keep out busboys who will work for less than the minimum wage.


The procedures for legal immigration are already so cumbersome, and involve so much delay that no terrorist will use them. All it does is place an even greater burden on asylum-seekers, often those least able to fend for themselves because they are victims of persecution in their homelands.

THIS ISN'T EUROPE!
Others, including many in the Jewish community, look at the prospect of continued immigration as a threat to democracy because they fear waves of Muslims will alter our demography and our politics the way they have in Europe.


But again, such fears are misplaced. The overwhelming majority of people who come here are people who want to be Americans for the same reason our own grandparents chose this nation: economic opportunity and political freedom. And though few among the nativist rabble-rousers on Capitol Hill or in the media have noticed it, such immigrants are incredibly productive and help keep our economy growing.


That also raises an ironic point about Social Security. The National Foundation for American Policy, a nonpartisan research center based in Virginia, reports that if legal immigration goes up by as much as one-third over the next 75 years, it will cause a 10 percent reduction in the Social Security fund deficit. But if immigration falls by a third, the study says the shortfall will increase by 10 percent.


That's something for both opponents and supporters of Bush's Social Security plan to chew on. It also puts into focus exactly what's at stake in the ongoing debate about immigration. The flow of hard-working potential citizens into this country is the life blood of our economy, as well as of our democracy.


That's why conservative Republicans are fools if they don't realize they are sacrificing their party's chances of solidifying their majority in the future if they continue to play the know-nothing card.


And as for liberals who hate Bush, they need to keep in mind that it's the president who's the one man who can keep America's gates open to immigrants. They should remember this the next time they damn him and his faith-based agenda.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and in the media consider "must reading." Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Jonathan S. Tobin is executive editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent. Let him know what you think by clicking here.

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© 2004, Jonathan Tobin