Zolotykh V. R. American concervatives and immigration reform: political and electoral apects; issue of amnesty (.pdf)


The paper examines the two main approaches of American conservatives towards the issue of immigration, as well as its political and electoral influence on the Republican Party and the conservative movement in general. According to the conservatives, who support immigration, an established public perception of the Republican Party as a supporter of anti-immigrant strategy is a serious threat to its popularity due to demographic and electoral changes. The most active conservative debates among the supporters and opponents of immigration take place over the following issues: the electoral behavior of Hispanic and Asian communities, ethno-demographic changes, social conservatism of the Hispanics and Asians, the image of the Republican Party in the eyes of immigrants, electoral preferences among ethnic communities. The content of the Immigration Act of 1996 and further events of the second part of the 1990s revealed the predominance of pro-immigration views. From 1996 to September 11th, 2001, the majority of conservatives supported immigration and argued in support of a higher quota. After the tragic events of September 11th, 2001, the restrictionists saw an increase in their popularity based on the understanding that it was easier to find support for the issue of security rather than for the immigration one. In its 14 points manifest, the Washington Times laid out the national security strategy of the restrictionists. Twelve out of fourteen points were dedicated to immigration. Without a doubt, the need for immigration reform, which is currently on the agenda in US and causes serious contradictions in the society, is primarily related to the changes in ethno-racial composition of the American population. The times of white majority rule are gradually fading into history, which will inevitably affect electoral results and political preferences of the elites and ordinary people.


Key words: conservatives, immigration, election, amnesty, the USA, immigrationists, restrictionists.


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