Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
October 25, 2007
POLITICS: Will Hillary Abandon Spitzer Over Illegal Immigrant Driver's Licenses?

I've written previously here and here about NY Governor Eliot Spitzer's foolhardy and politically disastrous plan to give driver's licenses to illegal aliens, and NY Senator Hillary Clinton's evasive response to questions about the plan that "I know exactly what Governor Spitzer's trying to do and it makes a lot of sense, because he's trying to get people out of the shadows" and "it's unfortunate that too many people are using this to demagogue the issue," wink, wink, while, as Jim Geraghty notes, sending her chief strategist out to argue that the families of illegal immigrants "may be the most powerful political force in the country," nudge, nudge.

But just because a Clinton takes a non-position doesn't mean it can't change, and the NY Post's veteran Albany correspondent, Frederic Dicker, reports that a panicked NY Democratic Party is planning to throw Spitzer under the, er, steamroller - and some believe that Sen. Clinton may end up getting on board with that effort:

Top Democrats fear that Gov. Spitzer's controversial plan to grant driver's licenses to illegal aliens has endangered their party's candidates across the state -- and even threatens the presidential prospects of Hillary Rodham Clinton, The Post has learned.

A half-dozen senior Democrats told The Post that Spitzer's licensing plan is producing what one called "a mass exodus" away from the party's candidates that may lead to unexpected losses in November's local elections.

They are also warning that growing voter unhappiness with Spitzer on the licensing and other issues - illustrated in several recent polls - could carry into next year and end the Democrats' hope of winning control of the GOP-dominated state Senate.

"The driver's-license issue is a killer for us in the suburbs," a senior party strategist said. . . .

+++

Another senior Democrat predicted that Sen. Clinton, who has repeatedly refused to say whether she backs Spitzer's plan, would soon be forced to reject it.

"The immigrant license issue is one of the most politically dangerous in the nation, and Hillary will have to come out against it," the Democrat said.

H/T Geraghty. Stay tuned.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 8:21 AM | Politics 2007 • | Politics 2008 | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

So tell me, did all conservatives get some secret email to blame Hillary for everything someone else does? Spitzer brought this issue up; he's right in trying to deal with the issue. Since he can't ever admit what comes out of his mouth isn't perfect, any plan of his is probably always half assed.

So you add Hillary to the mix, for having a thoughtful response. You guys must really be getting nervous.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at October 25, 2007 9:35 AM

Since Hillary's a Senator (in absentia) from NY, she has to take a position on the issue

But Spitzer's right. There's no serious reason why illegals shouldn't have drivers' licenses. If they're working here, they'll likely, and we benefit from them working. I have to part from my conservative brothers (the WSJ being the main exception) on this one.

And given the demographic funding crisis we face with SS and Medicare, we want all the young (working) immigrants we can get. It's lousy, at least marginally racist politics to try to seal the border-an inpossible task anyway.

Posted by: John Salmon at October 25, 2007 10:41 AM

"they'll likely need them..." l meant to say.

Posted by: John Salmon at October 25, 2007 10:43 AM

Daryl, Hillary has to take a stand, it is a cutting edge issue. 9/11 commission and immigration, additional she is our Senator. She is making every effort to avoid hammering the bulldozer. It is a terrible idea, and it runs 70% against in all polls. She will kill the spitz when she has to. And she will, this clown never backs down. He is a dead man walking. It was months ago I happily voted for him. Never a fan, I made the faulty assumption that he would be a highly effective first term administer with his eyes on a bigger prize. My bad, he is deranged, violent, and menacing.

Posted by: abe at October 25, 2007 11:36 AM

Abe, I didn't mean she shouldn't take a stand. She didn't dodge a question, merely answered it. I agree about Spitzer, except I wouldn't and didn't vote for him. Clinton won't let him take her down, she is the best politician in the State. Let him go, I agree, he is the worst governor in my lifetime in NY. Cuomo was self righteous, but could be reasoned with if you were intelligent enough.

However, my point was in this, and the previous posting, and all over the press, no matter what any Dem says, it's Hillary this, Hillary that. They are scared scared scared. She can't be Swift Boated, because, being a Clinton, she can outfox them. Clearly, she has become a force for the middle they didn't think she would be a year or so ago. It was Spitzer's issue, but conservatives are trying to make it a Hillary one.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at October 25, 2007 12:14 PM

Charles Krauthammer wrote an interesting piece about Hillary a couple of weeks back.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2007/10/hillary_the_great_navigator.html

His thesis is that ultimately she has no principles and is only beholden to her own power. This whole driver's license thing is further evidence that Krauthammer is right. Hillary has never been anything but weak on illegal immigration, however this is not playing well and suddenly she takes this tough stance with a former ally. It is all political as everything is with Hillary.

That is why I am not so sure that she is a socialist. I think that she is just merely trying to buy votes. Here is how I saw that.

http://proprietornation.blogspot.com/2007/10/socialist-or-vote-buyer-does-it-really.html

Posted by: Mike Volpe at October 25, 2007 12:54 PM

Sorry if I mistook, it is definitely Hillary this/that, because that creates space and identity. I am bitter about my vote, loathed Patacki, and as much as I held my nose re elliot, I really expected better. He is old school, but in the Tammany way. I see Crank as the new Bill the Butcher.
Re the actual issue, I simply disagree. And i wonder if this is not an attempt to distract.

Posted by: abe at October 25, 2007 2:42 PM

Meh. She'll throw him under the bus if this ever becomes an issue after she gets the nominations, but isn't likely to do so just for local leaders.
I'd expect a combination of "you know, I couldn't do much about it" and "it was really brought to the people poorly" along with "there were other ways it could have been done".

"So tell me, did all conservatives get some secret email to blame Hillary for everything someone else does?"
Every time one of the Republican candidates brings up her name in the debate, I feel a bit sorry for them. Instead of being able to drive home what they believe in, or why they believe they are the future of America, they squawk about Hillary in order to bring home a few dollars, or get a cheer line. Sad, really. Same with the Dems and Bush, but a couple don't do that(let alone the different levels of responsibility).

"My bad, he is deranged, violent, and menacing."
Spitzer disorder syndrome already?
It's spreading!

Posted by: Dave at October 25, 2007 11:05 PM

Urg... That should be "Spitzer Derangement Syndrome". I'm not up on my conserva-insults.

Posted by: Dave at October 25, 2007 11:07 PM

Abe, I don't think Spitzer is, uh, violent.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at October 26, 2007 9:26 AM
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