Trump Has Monopoly on Immigration

There is a massive chasm between the voters and the political establishment. Instead of making mischief, the far-right is on its way to making policy because they have a near total monopoly on the hottest political issue for the rest of this decade.
December 2014.

The media and political establishment shut anti-immigration voices out of debate for decades. Those who now champion the issue have no political competitors. Polling tells us immigration restriction has been a majority position for years and the trend is in favor of more restriction. The result is unsurprising: once nationalists win power, they steamroll to legislative victory.

iSteve: Edsall in NYT: "Trump Has Got Democrats Right Where He Wants Them"
In fact, I found an unexpectedly high percentage of the experts I contacted — most of whom are sympathetic to the plight of immigrants — in general agreement that Democrats would be wise to come to some kind of an agreement with Trump.
Switching to skills based immigration is very popular with voters, including Democrat voters. Trump can get everything he wants, the end of the visa lottery, end of chain migration and the RAISE Act. Democrats can get some of the edges taken off, but immigration policy will be completely changed. If they refuse a deal, Trump can push ahead and maybe pick up seats in 2018, then gain again in 2020.

The same dynamics will play out in international trade (although on that issue the division is as much within the parties as across party lines). Once voters have a choice, they will take it.

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