Based on his track record, we could expect Reagan to be dismayed at the GOP’s success but longer term debacle in Arizona. Reagan would once again favor amnesty. And unlike John McCain, he would have the cojones to call it amnesty.
But Reagan being Reagan would have to throw a fish to the Tea Party crowd. As was always his style, he’d find someone or something unpopular to verbally bash. He rode to California’s governorship by tongue lashing student radicals, anti-war protesters or anyone else who dared speak out. (Tea Party drones shouldn’t think they’re the first to raise their voice against the Establishment.)
While promoting amnesty, Reagan would give a fire-breathing speech against ungrateful illegals. He’d promise a law to illegalize anybody carrying a flag other than Old Glory. He’d go for big penalties against anybody displaying the flag upside down.
Reagan being Reagan would also pledge that once amnesty passed, he’d build a bigger, meaner border fence than ever before. Of course, he’d do it his way. Thus no WPA-type project to put a dent in America’s effective 20% unemployment. No, Reagan would contract the job out to some big Republican campaign contributor who’d hire illegals even before the amnesty passed.
So much for papier mache saints.