Filling in for Chuck Todd on The Daily Rundown Monday, NBC’s Kristen Welker said that while the Republicans once “owned the defeat of immigration reform,” due to the crisis on the border Barack Obama now was bearing the brunt of the blame—a take correspondent Luke Russert affirmed, saying the crisis "feeds into this idea that President Obama is incompetent."
Welker: Prior to this crisis, Republicans really owned the defeat of immigration reform. But now President Obama to some extent owns this border crisis. Have the political winds shifted here? What are people saying about that?
Russert: Republicans are comfortable to move on this for one reason and that's because in the immediate effect, ahead of the 2014 midterms, where they're trying to turn out their base, this helps them out a lot. They also believe it helps them out in red states, where they're running against red state Democrats. Secondly though, Kristen, it feeds into this idea that President Obama is incompetent. The Republicans are hitting him for his competency. That's an argument they're happy to have.
Russert also noted that the “party elders” must balance “law and order” while not appearing to be “inhumane” to the increasingly more significant Latino voting base:
Russert: However, the party elders realize that come 2016, come 2020, you do not want to anger the fastest-growing voting base in the country, which is Latinos, by seemingly being inhumane. So that's something they have to walk a fine line on: Be law and order here, but still have a sense of being humane in the future.