Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

George Will: Trump Defines Down the GOP

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

George Will: Trump Defines Down the GOP

Article excerpt

It has come to this: The GOP, formerly the party of Lincoln and ostensibly the party of liberty and limited government, is being defined by clamors for a mass roundup and deportation of millions of human beings. To will an end is to will the means for the end, so the Republican clamors are also for expansion of government's size and coercive powers.

Most of Donald Trump's normally loquacious rivals are swaggeringly eager to confront Vladimir Putin, but are too invertebrate -- Lindsey Graham is an honorable exception -- to voice robust disgust with Trump and the spirit of the police measures necessary for, and the cruelties that would accompany, his policy. The policy is: "They've got to go."

"They," the approximately 11.3 million illegal immigrants, have these attributes: Eighty-eight percent have been here at least five years. Of the 62 percent who have been here at least 10 years, about 45 percent own their own homes. About half have children who were born here and hence are citizens. Dara Lind of Vox reports that at least 4.5 million children who are citizens have at least one parent who is an illegal immigrant.

Trump evidently plans to deport almost 10 percent of California's workers, and 13 percent of that state's K-12 students. He is, however, at his most Republican when he honors family values: He proposes to deport intact families, including children who are citizens. Trump would deport everyone, then "have an expedited way of getting them ('the good ones'; 'when somebody is terrific') back."

Trump proposes seizing money that illegal immigrants from Mexico try to send home. This might involve sacrificing mail privacy, but desperate times require desperate measures.

Today's big government finds running Amtrak too large a challenge, and Trump's roundup would be about 94 times larger than the wartime internment of 117,000 persons of Japanese descent. But Trump wants America to think big. …

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