If National Review editor Rich Lowry was looking for compromise on immigration from Republican Jeb Bush, he’s still looking. According to NR, Bush “and Lowry tussled over immigration policy and tax pledges.”
Jeb wasn’t even willing to take the seemingly easy out of opting to secure the border first. One is left to wonder what the unemployed, “younger, more dynamic people” of Baltimore and other areas might think of Jeb’s reasoning.
“This isn’t a zero-sum game,” Bush said, taking issue with Wisconsin governor Scott Walker’s contention that an immigration policy should, first and foremost, be based on protecting American workers and American wages. “[If] you want to grow at 4 percent instead of 2 percent per year, you need younger, more dynamic people inside of our economy to get to 4 percent growth,” he said.
“You can’t do it with a declining population, you can’t do it with a pathetic productivity rate,” he continued, warning that America ran the risk of going the way of Japan and parts of Europe if it didn’t institute immigration reforms.
“I love you, and I love National Review,” Bush said. “But I just think you’re wrong on immigration, to be honest with you. And you think I’m wrong. But I respect you.”
Jeb’s also not a fan of tax pledges—as was his father George H. W. Bush, whose voters read his lips and didn’t re-elect him.
Lowry also asked the former Florida governor about his resistance to signing the famous “tax pledge” offered by Americans for Tax Reform’s Grover Norquist, who asks all candidates to sign an agreement not to raise taxes while in office.
“I’m not going to change my views on that,” Bush said, calling it a principled opposition to pledges of that sort. “My record is clear,” he continued, pointing to the billions in taxes he cut during his tenure as governor. “My record is better than anybody else.”
“If you’ve served in the United States Senate over the last eight years, six years, no tax cut has taken place,” Bush said, taking a veiled shot at the Senate Republicans likely to challenge him for the GOP nomination. “Anybody associated with Washington, D.C. can talk about this stuff. But places where taxes have actually been cut are places like Florida, run by conservative governors.”