The El Paso speech is notable not for breaking any new ground onimmigration but for perfectly illustrating Obama's political style:the professorial invitation to civil discourse wrapped around thebasest of rhetorical devices - charges of malice compounded withaccusations of bad faith. "They'll never be satisfied," Obama saidabout border control. "And I understand that. That's politics."
How understanding. The other side plays "politics"; Obama actsin the public interest.
This impugning of motives is an Obama constant. "They" playpolitics. It is ironic that such a charge should be made in aspeech that is nothing but politics. There is zero chance of anyimmigration legislation passing Congress in the next two years. ElPaso was simply an attempt to gin up the Hispanic vote.Accordingly, the speech featured two other staples: thebreathtaking invention and the statistical sleight of hand.
"The (border) fence is now basically complete," asserted thepresident. Complete? There are now 350 miles of pedestrian fencingalong the Mexican border. The border is 1,954 miles long. That's 18percent. Another 299 miles - 15 percent - are vehicle barriers thatpedestrians can walk right through.
Obama then boasted that on his watch 31 percent more drugs havebeen seized, 64 percent more weapons - proof of how he has securedthe border. And for more proof: Apprehension of illegal immigrantsis down 40 percent. Obama says this means that fewer people aretrying to cross the border.
Katie Pavlich is the Editor at Townhall.com. Follow her on Twitter @katiepavlich. She is a New York Times Best Selling author. Her latest book Assault and Flattery: The Truth About the Left and Their War on Women, was published on July 8, 2014.
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