Arizona's new immigration law is just the latest evidence that the "angry right" — as represented by the Tea Party movement — is now functionally in control of the GOP, says Frank Rich in The NY Times. The "bigoted" measure is best understoood in the context of the populist "'Take Back America' crusade that has attended the rise of Barack Obama and the accelerating demographic shift our first African-American president represents." Here's a short excerpt:
"The crowd that wants Latinos to show their papers if there’s a 'reasonable suspicion' of illegality is often the same crowd still demanding that the president produce a document proving his own citizenship. Lest there be any doubt of that confluence, Rush Limbaugh hammered the point home after Obama criticized Arizona’s action. 'I can understand Obama being touchy on the subject of producing your papers,' he said. 'Maybe he’s afraid somebody’s going to ask him for his.'...
"To the 'Take Back America' right, the illegitimate Obama is Illegal Alien No. 1. It’s no surprise that of the 35 members of the Arizona House who voted for the immigration law (the entire Republican caucus), 31 voted soon after for another new law that would require all presidential candidates to produce birth certificates to qualify for inclusion on the state’s 2012 ballot."
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