No secret that some people didn't like Ted Kennedy, and everyone is entitled to their opinion. I'm not trying to defend any of his specific positions, but to me this article just doesn't make sense, let alone a credible case, for many reasons. For example:
- AFAIK any bill introduced by anyone in Congress gets voted on by 535 elected senators and representatives, and is subject to presidential veto even if approved; Ted Kennedy didn't pass any law by himself.
- since 1965, there have been all kinds of combinations of parties and ideologies in control of the White House and Congress, and they've been free (within the constitution) to change previous laws if needed. Even the article seems to concede that there has been bipartisan support for immigration reforms.
- the article doesn't seem to be concerned with its own concession that there were decades of experience after 1965 where no one could credibly attempt to draw a line between immigration policies and domestic terrorism. It writes off the benefits that the U.S. has realized from millions of immigrants and their descendants over multiple generations, basically over the actions of one family more than 50 years after the beginning of the reforms it criticizes.
- the article highlights how the "old" immigration standards were meant to be applied in situation of significant hardship (citing eastern European Jews), but overlooks the fact that the bombers' family likely would have qualified for asylum even under the old standards. Chechnya in the '90's wasn't a stable place - and a reasonable person could believe some of the instability resulted from U.S. involvement. The idea that we would take in families who fled Chechnya AFAIK is consistent with historical immigration practices.
Overall, this article seems like a real "we don't know what to say so we'll blame Ted Kennedy" cop-out. Obviously we need to be vigilant over security issues associated with people coming into the country, but this article's attempt to pin it on Ted Kennedy and immigration reforms to me doesn't seem to withstand even minimal scrutiny. If anything, it is counterproductive to lead people to think the primary answer lies in Kennedy-bashing and immigration reform, since we've shown we're quite able to grow them here.