Quietly, Obama sent up a proposal to dispatch 1,200 National Guardsmen to the border. A proposal to increase that number to 6,000 was defeated narrowly yesterday, along a near party-line vote, with some Democrats breaking ranks to support the provision.
Curiously, this news is running below the radar. The right’s neglect we can expect — it doesn’t fit their narrative, and Fox News, apparently, has bigger stories — but it’s not clear to me why we shouldn’t be happy about this, and trumpeting it as a victory for compromise, and a flat rebuttal of the notion that Democrats don’t care about border security. Taking border security into federal hands, where it belongs, takes the matter out of the states’ hands — and away from Arizona’s bizarre law — thus accomplishing an objectively important goal in a non-controversial, competent manner. This is bipartisanship for a good cause, a clear example of the President “standing up to his base,” and a reminder of why Obama’s political philosophy works, in most cases, a beneficial moderation in a polarized nation.