The Magazine

A Little Something for the GOP?

If only Obama keeps his promises.

Nov 24, 2008, Vol. 14, No. 10 • By FRED BARNES
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Then, the Republican stance on abortion would become the moderate position. Democrats would have enacted, or tried to anyway, the most extreme of pro-abortion positions. By stressing modest limits on abortion favored overwhelmingly by the public, Republicans would have the popular position.

On immigration, Obama could help simply by adopting what he and most Democrats already favor, namely granting the 12 million illegals now in America some sort of permanent legal status. This is also the position of John McCain and President Bush and, for what it's worth, myself.

Many Republicans oppose amnesty legislation. But they'd be better off if it passed. On their own, Republicans have been unable to resolve their deep and politically harmful disagreement on immigration, and there's no compromise on the horizon. Having Obama and Democrats enact a comprehensive immigration bill would resolve the dispute and allow the issue to fade. Republicans could move on.

Should we really expect Obama to provide this much aid and comfort to Republicans? Maybe not. But he's never bucked any of the liberal special interests. In fact, his stated agenda coincides exactly with theirs. All Republicans need is for Obama to keep his promises.

Fred Barnes is executive editor of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.