By picking Paul Ryan as his running mate, Mitt Romney has caved into the most extreme right wing radicals in his own party. It is no secret that Rupert Murdoch and other assorted right wing movers and shakers, many of whom were instrumental in foisting Sarah Palin on the country in 2008, were unhappy with the way Romney was running his dull, gaffe-prone, campaign, and wanted him to pick someone with their own radical views to "shake things up".
They must have made Romney an offer he couldn't refuse, namely to pick Ryan or else have the Koch brothers and Karl Rove's billionaire bundlers turn off the money spigot. Hence Romney's "bold" choice of the "principled" author of a budget which would take America back to the Robber Baron Gilded Age of the 19th century.
For the gory details, Facing Our Fiscal Challenges by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, (www.cbpp.org) is a good start. Robert Reich (The Ryan Choice) and Robert Creamer (Was Romney's Ryan Pick Bold Or Desperate?), both in the August 12 Huffington Post, also have good summaries of the unbelievable extent to which the Ryan budget would rob the poor and the middle class in order to throw big tax breaks at the wealthiest Americans and large corporations.
However, since this is not an economic discussion site, I will now get to the main point, which is what effect choosing Ryan would have on immigration policy if Romney were to become the next president.
But before doing so, I have to mention the only positive sign in the Ryan choice (other than the fact that Romney has blown the election): Sarah Palin has been replaced by another crowd-pleasing right wing radical, but one with brains. Her political career is now a bridge to nowhere.
There are three implications for immigration in Romney's Ryan choice, none of them positive. The first is that Ryan clearly shares Romney's unyielding, hard right views on immigration. A look at Ryan's website shows that even though he talks a lot about the need to reform the "broken immigration system", his "reforms", would be just as draconian as the fiscal reforms in his budget. Specifically, there would be no reform until the Mexican border is "secure" and 11 million unauthorized immigrants have all left the US. This is just the right wing "enforcement only" mantra that we are all familiar with.
The second, and even more serious implication is that if Romney is willing to cave into the far right billionaires who own the Republican party on economics, what would stop him from caving into the bigots who would like to see Sheriff Joe and Kris Kobach in charge of immigration?
But the third, and most serious, danger for immigration from a Romney/Ryan presidency could well be the rising poverty, inequality and hoplessness that would engulf middle and working class people resulting from Romney/Ryan's reverse Robin Hood economics. Millions of people made desperate by anger and despair would look for scapegoats. Any guesses who?
Roger Algase is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has been practicing business immigration law in New York City for more than 20 years.