Conservatives have relentlessly and insanely opposed any reform of the immigration policy. The erosion of their support across the USA, major losses in former bastions of support and recent warning from Newt Gingrich of a possible disaster has not led them to be more introspective. A recent poll published by Wall Street Journal shows that John McCain is running even with his Democratic challengers even though support for the Republican party has touched rock-bottom. Even a person as astute as Newt Gingrich expressed only surprise but had no explanation for this stark contrast.
The pièce de résistance was the interview Bill O' Reilly had with a representative of the Roman Catholic Church who stood up for the human rights of illegal immigrants. Bill was, as usual, was not listening. He went as far as to criticize the Pope for supporting immigration reform! Over again, Bill used the opportunity to continue his propaganda against immigration. Maybe, Bill ought to know that America lectures the rest of the world about human rights.
Clearly, the electorate has drifted away from a party that annoyed them with its intolerance of immigration, gay and lesbian rights and and an overzealous faith in religion. America needs immigrants as much as immigrants need America. The departure of "illegal" immigrants has created labor shortages across the USA. Skilled engineers are returning to their prospering countries and will surely undermine America's competitive edge over the longer run.
John McCain was willing to listen to the conservatives on border protection while he consistently reaffirmed his commitment to legal entry for unskilled immigrants. The conservatives did not return the favor and are expressing displeasure at his "disrespectful" attitude reflected in his support for a comprehensive reform of immigration. The only way John can protect conservatives from themselves is to ignore them on immigration issues. That and gay marriage--it appears that freedom is for only some people.
American citizens are turning to somebody as dishonest as Barack Obama out of disillusionment with the second term of the Bush administration. The man is a phoney but could well win given the mood of the electorate. John McCain has in his program for health reform a very innovative initiative which could significantly change the political landscape in the USA. If only conservatives shut up for now--especially on immigration.