Skip to content
Subscriber Only
Ramesh Ponnuru

The Great Immigration Non-Debate

Republicans are determined to avoid a real debate on immigration in 2016.
How many more?

How many more?

Photographer: John Moore/Getty Images

Immigration is supposed to be a bitterly divisive topic for Republicans. Yet a very narrow range of opinion separates the party's leading presidential candidates, which is unfortunate for the country.

The last Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, opposed giving legal status to illegal immigrants. But most of the candidates this time around favor it. Jeb Bush thinks many illegal immigrants should be offered legal status, and maybe even citizenship. Scott Walker has taken the same view. So have Marco Rubio and Bobby Jindal. Ted Cruz (for the record, a friend of mine) opposes citizenship, but favors offering legal status. That's where Rand Paul is too.