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Virginia’s Most Useless Congressman Strikes Again

Virginia’s most useless congressman and professional empty suit strikes again.

Dave Brat (D-ish, 7th District) whose notoriety as former State Senator Walter Stosch’s left-hand man and whose only notable contribution to legislation was Virginia’s largest illegal tax hike in history has decided to take off the hood — and declare the problem to be not just illegal immigration, but immigration writ large.

From this morning’s Richmond Times-Dispatch [1]:

As scarce as jobs are, wages have almost stopped rising at all since 2002, according to the Economic Policy Institute. Harvard economist George Borjas found that immigration reduced average annual earnings of native-born American workers by about 4 percent over a 20-year period. Borjas found that it was not the legal status of the immigrants that reduced Americans’ incomes, but the presence and availability of immigrants — whether legal or illegal, permanent or temporary — in the job market. It follows logically that an increase in the supply of workers will invariably depress wages.

In short?  Dey tuk ur jerbz.

The article’s headline is cutesy in the sense that it’s designed to draw eyeballs.  “Immigration is killing America!!! . . . -ns’ job prospects, that is… lawlz…”

How adorable.  Someone passed the 8th grade.

Yet true to the nativist line, Brat finds his inner Liberace, leaping from the shadows and reveling in his own title — defending “native-born” against the hordes of immigrant cockroaches.  Of course, the facts are skewed and intentionally so — wages haven’t recovered since 2002 because we are still recovering from the Great Recession [2].  Immigrants actually help in that exchange, bringing resources and new firms in order to jumpstart the America economy — something our protectionist and nationalist friends on the alt-right neglect in their mad dash to protect the narrative in the Ukraine bend over for their Russian financiers rescue the national narrative for one Donald J. Trump.

Which is what this is really about after a staggeringly horrible last week for the presumptive nominee, right?  Something has to save the Trump campaign– and what better than the old saw that got Trump where he is?

…even if folks have accused him of being nativist and anti-immigrant before, only to have the response that he was merely anti-illegal immigrant.  Oh, and build a wall for no discernible purpose (but this isn’t about Mexicans… no no no…)

There’s something else I gotta harp on for a moment.  This whole, “I am the only member of Congress who is also an economist” line from Brat.  To wit:

I am the only member of Congress who is also an economist.

bratseatempty [3]

Fun fact #1?  Economists publish.

Fun fact #2:?  Being an economist is akin to being a sociologist.  It’s not a hard science in the slightest; it has absolutely nothing to do with hard math.  Game theory, manipulation, telling people what they want to hear in order to achieve a desired outcome?  These things are all the tools and trade of a sociologist cum economist.

The thin line that separates Dave Brat from the gender studies department at your average Tier Three just-a-piece-of-paper-not-a-diploma college?  Hinges totally on whether or not Brat actually contributes to the field in a meaningful sort of way.  Brat has never done this.

…instead, Brat contributed to another avocation of his — helping to draft illegal tax hikes.

For a man who has never published anything of merit, whose only reason for running was because Brat was left at the altar of the spoils system in the 56th House of Delegates seat when it was vacated by Bill Janis?

Brat’s reputation in Richmond was that of a yes-man, a compromiser of values and principle… a co-author of illegal tax hikes (HB 3202), a staunch and vicious opponent to the right to life, and a violator of property rights.  Like scorpion to frog, Brat headed to Washington and kicked off his career by — get this — actually voting up Boehner for Speaker (who gave him $10,000) before voting against his new BFF — then occupying his chair in Washington and authoring and passing precisely zero bills of merit.  All while feverishly decrying an influx of Syrian refugees, but never quite figuring out how many of those refugees actually have come into the country [4] (HINT: the answer was zero).

…and not to mention, Dave Brat was the choice of Democrats in the 2014 Republican Primary, a fact made abundantly clear when comparing voter files.  Want a shot to the gut?  9,500 Democrats crossed over in 2014 to vote for Brat, who won by only 7,200 votes.   That’s right — Democrats voted their man [5] and they bragged about it.

Meanwhile, to distract from Trump’s comments regarding Judge Gonzalo Curiel being unfit to serve as a judge because of his Mexican heritage [6]?  Brat’s gotta do someone a solid for his political masters back home… see how this game gets played?  Gotta ring the dinner bell… and that’s going to be those dirty, dirty Hispanics immigration.

Today, the Breitbart set has decided to take “Donald Trump’s Mini Me” — laughingly called by Trump staffers re: Brat on Pennsylvania Avenue — I laughed, too — and use their man to correct a really terrible week by choosing their favorite cast of villains: Hispanics immigrants (all of them) with a bunch of fake news published by the Washington Examiner?

Brat’s rank nativism and the sentiment he embraces is the antithesis of the conservative movement.  So long as conservatives ideas and passions are poisoned with the ideas of race and ethnicity, we will never achieve the harmony that the political right will require in order to push back against the political left.  We have but one option: drive them out [7].

Frankly, I’m glad we have Brat for at least (and given Trump’s numbers, perhaps?) two more years.  Perhaps then we can have an open conversation about the contrast between a politician who “says one thing and does another” to move the ball down the field vs. a politician who says one thing and does nothing at all… other than write poorly-researched op-eds, that is.