Tancredo Tanks, Endorses Romney
The good news for Mitt Romney is that one of his rivals for the Republican Presidential nomination, U.S. Respresentative Tom Tancredo (R-Colo), has dropped out of the race. The bad news may be that he has endorsed Mitt Romney.
This blog, including both its Mormon (Lowell the Hedgehog) and Jewish (I, Ralph, the Kosher Hedgehog) components, had been an outspoken booster of Mitt Romney since he announced his candidacy. However, for even longer, the Hedgehog Blog has been a proponent of the sort of sane and reasonable immigration reform prosposed by President George W. Bush. Yes, we want to re-establish control of America's borders, but we have never been convinced by those who believe that we can forcibly deport the millions of illegal immigrants already in the United States. We also have advocated a guest worker program that would confer legal residency on its participants and could lead to American citizenship, as good for the American economy, good for the immigrants and good for our country as a whole.
The New Yorker recently published an article by Ryan Lizza, discussing Representative Tancredo's impact on the Republican Presidential race. Speaking of Mitt Romney, Lizza wrote:
[Romney] has quickly and easily adopted the negative code words of the anti-immigration movement—“sanctuary cities,” “amnesty”—and has tried to attach them to Giuliani and Huckabee. In doing so, he became the first top-tier candidate to seize the Tancredo mantle. My own sense, from talking to Huckabee, a Southern populist, and McCain, a border-state senator, is that they are genuinely appalled by Romney’s tactics, not only because of the damage to their campaigns but also because of the damage they believe he’s doing to the Party’s image.
I truly hope that Mitt Romney does not see himself as the heir to Tancredo's mantle. In past posts on this blog, my blogging partner Lowell has convincingly demonstrated that Governor Romney has maintained a principled and consistent stance on immigration issues, contrary to charges of "flip flopping" on the issue. I truly would be interested in reading what further Lowell, who has written so much and so thoughtfully about the immigration issue, has to say about the Tancredo endorsement and where, if anywhere, Mitt Romney's immigration positions may differ from his own.