On Sunday, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin denounced the Senate’s immigration bill in an exclusive opinion piece for Breitbart News. One week before that, though, Palin laid out a promise and a warning to her own party in a speech to the Faith and Freedom Coalition conference in Washington, D.C. She said Americans do not deserve the exceptional country its founding fathers left them if they do not keep faith with the working class. And she said that that faith would be lost if the the Gang of Eight’s bill, passed by the Senate on Thursday, became law.
Her words are especially important as the immigration fight heads to the House, where Republican leaders have signaled they want “action” even if they do not take up the Senate bill.
At the Faith and Freedom Coalition, Palin said the voices of those in America’s working class “can reach millions of other patriots of all races, color, and creed who also value the dignity and opportunity of freedom.”
“They are the brave, having kept faith with everything we love about this land of the free,” Palin said. “And we will have no hope of reclaiming this country and we will deserve it even less if we fail to keep faith with them.”
Palin warned, “That is the message our leaders, especially those leaders in the GOP, need to understand…You do not marginalize, you do not discredit and dismiss everyday, average hard-working Americans.”
Not even 24 hours after Palin spoke, Ryan Lizza, a reporter for the liberal New Yorker magazine, revealed on June 16 that staff for Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), the leading face behind the push for “comprehensive immigration reform,” denigrated American workers, adopting the mentality of the donors and chamber of commerce fervently backing the immigration bill.
As Breitbart News wrote, two members of Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R-FL) staff disparaged American workers to Lizza, telling him there are American workers who “just can’t cut it” across “every sector.” Days later, a devastating Congressional Budget Office report concluded that the Senate’s immigration bill would lower wages and raise the unemployment rate in an economy that is nowhere near healthy.
On Tuesday, Palin fired back, specifically mentioning to Breitbart News that she would like to see Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) primaried for turning their back on voters and supporting the Senate’s amnesty bill even though they promised they would put border security before amnesty while campaigning in 2010.
“Every politician should be held accountable for breaking their campaign promises,” Palin said to John Gibson on Fox News radio on Tuesday. “They turned their back on the American public, so why should they not be held accountable?”
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), one of the most critical opponents of the immigration bill, noted that the bill would hurt working class Hispanics in addition to all working class Americans and the “poorest among us.” Sessions noted that according to the CBO report, the bill would have a devastating impact on wages of Americans looking for job security, and it would raise the unemployment rate while only solving 25% of the illegal immigration problem. He posited that between 30 million and 50 million workers will be added to the labor force in the next ten years, completely destroying the possibility of upward mobility of working class Americans of all backgrounds. Yet, Republican senators like Murkowski (R-AK), Rubio (R-FL), Ayotte (R-NH), McCain (R-AZ), and Graham (R-SC) voted for the final bill.
“Why would any Member of Congress want to vote for a bill at a time of high unemployment, falling wages?” Sessions asked on CBS’s Face the Nation on Sunday.
The answer, as Palin emphasized, is because leadership in Washington, D.C. has morphed into a permanent political class that puts its own well-being and prerogatives first. At the Faith and Freedom Coalition conference, Palin denounced the current spate of Washington scandals as being part of a greater disease. She said neither party was immune because the “good ol’ boys in leadership on both sides of the aisle” perpetuate the problem.
Palin spoke about a government that “has grown so arrogant it thinks we work for it instead of it working for us.” And she denounced those in the permanent political class who have “religious faith in government and elitist disdain for the rights of We the People.”
Palin spoke glowingly of America’s working people: “I’ve met them. Been in their homes. They’ve been in mine,” Palin said at the conference. “I’ve served them moose chili and blueberry pie. They are the rock upon which we will build this new majority.”