The anti-immigrant tide, stirred up by policy institutes like the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and the Center for Immigration Studies and by right-wing populists like CNN’s Lou Dobbs, caught the Republican Party leadership unawares. A surge of restrictionism in the House of Representatives, led by Rep. Tom Tancredo, resulted in a harshly anti-immigrant House bill last year that threw down the gauntlet, essentially challenging Senate Republicans and the president to stand with the restrictionists or against them.

One of the first to point out the potential divide in the party was neoconservative pundit and author David Frum who in late 2004 in a National Review cover article titled,