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Sarah Palin Endorses "Pathway to Citizenship" for Illegal Immigrants

April 28, 2010

That Sarah Palin, the propagator-in-chief of the ever-evolving "death panels" fraud deemed the Lie of the Year by Politifact, would blast President Obama for "perpetuating this myth that racial profiling is part" of the draconian new immigration law in Arizona was pathetically predictable. But what may come as an unwelcome surprise to the xenophobic denizens of Tea Partistan is her endorsement for a "pathway to citizenship" for the illegal aliens already in the United States.
During an appearance with Sean Hannity on Tuesday, the half-term Governor resorted to projection, accusing President Obama of myth-making over his criticism of an Arizona law he deemed "misguided." As Politico reported:

"There is no ability or opportunity in there for the racial profiling," she said. "Shame on the lame stream media again for turning this into something that it is not."
Palin then blamed the president for allowing the "myth" that the law allows racial profiling to take hold.
"It's shameful, too, that the Obama administration has allowed...this to become more of a racial issue by perpetuating this myth that racial profiling is a part of this law," she said.

While growing numbers of Republican leaders including Karl Rove fret over the constitutionality and building backlash, supposed liberty-loving Tea Party organizations called on members to "show your support " for the bill Governor Jan Brewer signed into law last week. Which means they won't be happy with the next part of Palin's discussion with Hannity:

"I think that President Obama is playing to his base on this one. And I think that's quite unfortunate because this isn't fair to the legal immigrants. It's not fair to illegal immigrants either...many of them want to come here and find that pathway to citizenship."

As it turns out, Sarah Palin's view on immigration remain something of a mystery, even to her most fervent supporters. (In her defense, as Governor of Alaska, Palin's border security challenges were limited to the occasional Canadian inadvertently snow-shoeing over the border from BC.) In March 2008, right-wing radio personality Laura Ingraham claimed Palin for the anti-immigration wing of the Republican Party:

"And she's not for comprehensive reform, I can tell you that right now. She's sick to death of this immigration nonsense in the United States."

But as John McCain's running mate, she walked the tightrope he (and the 2008 GOP platform) erected against "total amnesty" for illegal aliens while supporting that pathway to citizenship. That balancing act was on display during Palin's October 2008 interview with Univision:

As governor, how do you deal with them? Do you think they all should be deported?
There is no way that in the US we would roundup every illegal immigrant -there are about 12 million of the illegal immigrants- not only economically is that just an impossibility but that's not a humane way anyway to deal with the issue that we face with illegal immigration.
Do you then favor an amnesty for the 12 or 13 million undocumented immigrants?
No, I do not. I do not. Not total amnesty. You know, people have got to follow the rules. They've got to follow the bar, and we have got to make sure that there is equal opportunity and those who are here legally should be first in line for services being provided and those opportunities that this great country provides.
To clarify, so you support a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants?
I do because I understand why people would want to be in America. To seek the safety and prosperity, the opportunities, the health that is here. It is so important that yes, people follow the rules so that people can be treated equally and fairly in this country.

To the dismay of her hard line supporters, Palin's cognitive dissonance on immigration reform continued after the election. Last night, she told Sean Hannity, "Governor Jan Brewer did what she had to do as the CEO of that state," adding, "To help protect the citizens of her state she had to do what the federal government has refused to do, and that is help secure the border." But back in January, she lamented to Glenn Beck:

"(We) are at fault when we allow the other side to capture this immigration issue...We need to continue to be so welcoming."

As in, "Welcome to Arizona. Where are your papers?"


About

Jon Perr
Jon Perr is a technology marketing consultant and product strategist who writes about American politics and public policy.

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