The public relations campaign for President Obama's latest revival of "immigration reform" makes one thing crystal clear: This is not, and never has been, about homeland security. This is not, and never has been, about economic security. It's about political security, plain and cynical.
In conjunction with Tuesday's renewed White House push in Texas for a "new pathway to citizenship" for millions of illegal immigrants, disgruntled Latino activists are ratcheting up their radical anti-enforcement rhetoric. Illinois Democratic Rep. Luis Gutierrez -- a persistent critic on Obama's left flank -- lambasted federal workplace enforcement raids this weekend. On Sunday, he repeated his hyperbolic attacks on homeland security agents "terrorizing" neighborhoods and ripping babies from the breasts of nursing moms. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano made no public effort to defend her employees.
On campuses across the country, unhappy ethnic college student groups have turned up the heat on Democrats to resurrect the "DREAM Act" nightmare for the 12th time in a decade. The legislation -- persistently rejected by a bipartisan majority on Capitol Hill -- would provide illegal aliens (not just teenagers, but students up to age 35) federal education access and benefits, plus a conditional pass from deportation and a special path toward green cards and U.S. citizenship for themselves and unlimited relatives.
Obama argues that his comprehensive amnesty plan would boost America's bottom line. But the open-borders math doesn't add up. The Congressional Budget Office score of the last DREAM Act package estimates that "the bill would increase projected deficits by more than $5 billion in at least one of the four consecutive 10-year periods starting in 2021." And that doesn't include the costs of the unlimited family members the millions of DREAM Act beneficiaries would be able to bring to the U.S. A separate cost analysis by the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Immigration Studies concluded that the illegal alien DREAM Act bailout would cost taxpayers $6.2 billion a year and "crowd out" U.S. students in the classroom.
To help gloss over those sobering realities and blur the lines between legal and illegal immigration, Obama summoned Latino celebrities such as actresses Eva Longoria and Rosario Dawson. The starlets -- deemed important "stakeholders" in the immigration policy debate by the celebrity in chief -- have served as glamorous distractions from the vocal complaints of Southwest governors, ranchers, farmers and other victims of continued border chaos. These are the real stakeholders whose lives and livelihoods are at risk. But none had a seat at the Hollywood-filled table.