Sara Diamond




Right-Wing Politics and the Anti-Immigration Cause

Sara Diamond outlines the complexities of the Right’s positions, including the fault lines within the Right vis-a- vis immigration policy. She points out the contradictions and strange bedfellows generated by the immigration issue in relation to the Right’s broader goals. During the Proposition 187 campaign in California, for example, the Christian right-wing coalition was not vocal, and more generally, the Christian Right has downplayed the issue of immigration in order to avoid appearing racist at a time when it was making inroads into communities of color. This stands in sharp contrast to the position of the”Paleoconservatives” and Pat Buchanan, who equate nationality with cultural/ethnic characteristics–the crude implication being that the government’s role should be to preserve the white power structure. Unlike these Paleoconservatives, the Christian Right has adopted a more moderate posture on immigration in order to win converts(especially from communities of color) to its “core issues,” against abortion and homosexuality.

Proposition 187, anti-immigrant movement; right wing groups; religious right; referenda, initiatives, and plebiscites; California; culture and politics; immigration policy; Republican Party

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 23, No. 3 (1996): 154-168


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