Opinion: McCain mum on immigration at NRA show


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Not that NRA (although McCain did speak to that group recently too).

The Republican candidate delivered a speech at the National Restaurant Association show over the weekend highlighting his policies on international trade agreements and farm subsidies. But he made no mention of immigration policy, despite the association’s long-standing support of comprehensive immigration reform. It’s a case of McCain avoiding the issue that was once a signature policy of his.


The closest he came was talk of providing training for Americans losing jobs because of international trade (which could refer to more than money and goods):

[O]ur success in trading with other nations will be incomplete, and even a little hollow, unless every displaced worker gets a second chance and the training and education they need. There are vast benefits of a global marketplace, but they come at a cost for many, and we have an obligation to help our workers receive the training they need when plants close and jobs are lost. It’s not enough to go on and on praising and celebrating the benefits of the global economy, as some economists tend to do, and then treat displaced workers almost as an afterthought.

McCain does well to follow that up with a strong support for ending farm subsidies and upholding trade agreements. He hammers Barack Obama for suggesting a renegotiation of NAFTA, and puts in a good word for agreements with Colombia and South Korea. (Notably, McCain leaves Hillary Clinton be on this point, even though she’s more the economic isolationist than Obama. Maybe Obama isn’t the only one focusing his campaign?)

Thanks to the Immigration Prof blog for the tip.

*Photo courtesy EPA.