“Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love.”
—-Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, in comments about illegal immigration delivered at an event the George H. W. Bush Presidential Library,.
The statement by Jeb Bush has its sunny side, I suppose: with any luck, it should ensure that we don’t have a Bush-Clinton contest in 2016. Maybe that was Jeb’s intent. Otherwise, his comments are irresponsible attacks on the rule of law, common sense, fairness and national sovereignty.
The whole, mush-headed, contradictory, absurd quote:
“There are means by which we can control our border better than we have. And there should be penalties for breaking the law.But the way I look at this — and I’m going to say this, and it’ll be on tape and so be it. The way I look at this is someone who comes to our country because they couldn’t come legally, they come to our country because their families — the dad who loved their children — was worried that their children didn’t have food on the table. And they wanted to make sure their family was intact, and they crossed the border because they had no other means to work to be able to provide for their family. Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love. It’s an act of commitment to your family. I honestly think that that is a different kind of crime that there should be a price paid, but it shouldn’t rile people up that people are actually coming to this country to provide for their families.”
- Are all crimes that involve providing for family members “acts of love,” Governor? Insurance fraud? Drug-dealing? Extortion? Bank heists? Should murders that are motivated love be less than felonies?
- What are your views on the obligation not to have children that you can’t provide for without breaking laws? What are your views on the obligations of citizens to reform their own country so that it has laws and policies that allow citizens to make a decent living?
- How do you reconcile the statements that we should control our borders and have penalties for breaking laws with your celebration of the ethics of those who break the law by crossing borders?
- Are we going to apply a “love test” as part of enforcement? How do you propose doing that?
- Are you aware that in order to have effective law enforcement, the penalties for breaking laws must be seen as sufficiently severe that the benefits of violating them are perceived as not worth the cost? How do you propose treating illegal immigration as less than a felony while simultaneously controlling the border “better”?
- Did you think through the logic of this statement at all? Do you comprehend how irresponsible and damaging such nonsense is coming from anyone taken seriously as a leader, thinker, and statesman?
For some reason, illegal immigration, more than any other issue—well, maybe illegal drug enforcement too—-converts otherwise intelligent, rational policymakers into intellectually sloppy, sentimental, irresponsible fools.