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Archive for the ‘Arizona Immigration Law’ Category

Earlier this year, Republican Party chairman Michael Steele admitted that the GOP has engaged in Southern Strategy politics: employing racial, anti-minority code language and fear-mongering as a means of energizing the party’s white Christian base.

This is a fact. The Southern Strategy is real, though it’s no longer exclusively “southern.”

There’s no disputing its widespread use. Come to think of it, for Steele to “confess” to the the GOP’s use of the Strategy makes it seems as though it was previously a secret. It wasn’t. Fact: the Republican Party routinely tweaks white fear, paranoia, prejudice and resentment in order to win votes and score political points at the expense of demonized minority groups. They engage in stereotyping and misinformation and they rarely, if ever, use the “n-word” these days, though they might as well. After all, as the Strategy goes, blacks and minorities aren’t voting Republican anyway, so… let fly.

And it works. So well, in fact, that it’s still actively used on AM talk radio and on Fox News Channel as a ratings-grabber, not to mention as a recruitment tool for the various tea party groups. If you can effectively convince the majority race that they’re being somehow victimized by the significantly smaller minority, you have a seriously powerful (and clearly immoral) psycho-weapon in your arsenal.

This year has to be some kind of high water mark for white antagonism against minorities, and evidence that the Republicans, along with the array of far-right apparatchiks, don’t really have a serious agenda for governing to sell or, for that matter, anything of value to say. And so they do this. They continue to tap into a mother lode of white majority self-pity and inchoate rage as a form of spackle over the gaping holes in their ridiculous policy arguments.

Take a good look at the big stories of the last several months — the stories that have been driven by the far-right machine, injected into the mainstream and subsequently debated by the rest of the country — partly as a result of the far-right’s money, loudness and tenacity, and partly because these arguments are too obnoxious and outrageous, and therefore too irresistible, to avoid. I’ve been hearing a lot about August being “crazy month,” but the crazy topics have spanned the entire summer and beyond.

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Tea Party Activists Rally Along Arizona-Mexico Border To Protest Illegal Immigration

JONATHAN J. COOPER | 08/15/10 04:57 PM | AP Via- Huff Post

HEREFORD, Ariz. — Tea party groups converged on a remote section of the U.S.-Mexico border on Sunday to show support for Arizona’s controversial new immigration law.

The group was gathered about 70 miles west of Nogales on a private ranch where 15-foot steel posts are set closely together to prevent people from crossing the border.

Demonstrators attached hundreds of U.S. flags with messages about curbing illegal immigration to the posts and chanted, “U-S-A,” after a handful of spectators gathered on the Mexico side of the border.

One of the messages posted on the border wall read, “Mister President … Secure This Border For America.”

A federal judge has put on hold the most contentious provisions of the law, including a section that would require officers to check a person’s immigration status while enforcing other laws if they had “reasonable suspicion” that the person was in the country illegally.

Among those speaking at the rally Sunday was Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, known for his tough enforcement of immigration laws in Arizona’s most populous county. He said immigration enforcement goes far beyond the nation’s border and the Mexican Government should welcome U.S. border patrol or military forces to go after drug cartels south of the border.

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Omar Torres, AFP/Getty Images- Mexican immigrants carrying bottles of water attempt to cross the Mexico-U.S. border illegally from Sasabe, in the state of Sonora into the Arizona desert in the United States, April 2006.

Judge Blocks Parts Of Ariz. Immigration Law

Law Will Still Take Effect Thursday But Without Many Controversial Provisions

AMANDA MYERS, Associated Press Writers Via: KPHO.com
POSTED: 2:58 pm MST July 27, 2010
UPDATED: 10:21 am MST July 28, 2010
PHOENIX — A judge has blocked the most controversial sections of Arizona’s new immigration law from taking effect Thursday, handing a major legal victory to opponents of the crackdown.
The law will still take effect Thursday, but without many of the provisions that angered opponents – including sections that required officers to check a person’s immigration status while enforcing other laws. The judge also put on hold a part of the law that required immigrants to carry their papers at all times, and made it illegal for undocumented workers to solicit employment in public places.
U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton put those controversial sections on hold until the courts resolve the issues.
Opponents say the law will lead to racial profiling and is trumped by federal immigration law.

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Man With Neo-Nazi Ties Leading Patrols In Arizona

MICHELLE PRICE | 07/17/10 06:08 PM | AP Via: Huff Post

PHOENIX — Minutemen groups, a surge in Border Patrol agents, and a tough new immigration law aren’t enough for a reputed neo-Nazi who’s now leading a militia in the Arizona desert.

Jason “J.T.” Ready is taking matters into his own hands, declaring war on “narco-terrorists” and keeping an eye out for illegal immigrants. So far, he says his patrols have only found a few border crossers who were given water and handed over to the Border Patrol. Once, they also found a decaying body in a wash, and alerted authorities.

But local law enforcement are nervous given that Ready’s group is heavily armed and identifies with the National Socialist Movement, an organization that believes only non-Jewish, white heterosexuals should be American citizens and that everyone who isn’t white should leave the country “peacefully or by force.”

“We’re not going to sit around and wait for the government anymore,” Ready said. “This is what our founding fathers did.”

An escalation of civilian border watches have taken root in Arizona in recent years, including the Minutemen movement. Various groups patrol the desert on foot, horseback and in airplanes and report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol, and generally, they have not caused problems for law enforcement.

But Ready, a 37-year-old ex-Marine, is different. He and his friends are outfitted with military fatigues, body armor and gas masks, and carry assault rifles. Ready takes offense at the term “neo-Nazi,” but admits he identifies with the National Socialist Movement.

“These are explicit Nazis,” said Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Intelligence Project. “These are people who wear swastikas on their sleeves.”

Ready is a reflection of the anger over illegal immigration in Arizona. Gov. Jan Brewer signed a controversial new immigration law in April, which requires police, while enforcing other laws, to question a person’s immigration status if officers have a reasonable suspicion that the person is in the country illegally.

But Brewer hasn’t done enough, Ready said, and he’s not satisfied with President Barack Obama’s decision to beef up security at the border.

MORE HERE

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Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R)

Brewer Falsely Claimed Immigrants Beheaded People In Arizona (VIDEO)

TPM MUCKRAKER

Rachel Slajda | July 1, 2010, 6:43PM

When defending her highly criticized immigration law, Gov. Jan Brewer (R) often lists the myriad problems she says undocumented immigrants bring to her state. In an interview on Fox News last week, for example, she claimed: “We cannot afford all this illegal immigration and everything that comes with it, everything from the crime and to the drugs and the kidnappings and the extortion and the beheadings …”

There’s no better way, it seems, to make the case for strict anti-immigration laws than to claim that undocumented immigrants are pouring into the country to decapitate innocent Americans.

Brewer nonetheless stuck by the claim that undocumented immigrants are murdering Arizonans when asked about it last weekend on a local Arizona political show.

“Our law enforcement agencies have found bodies in the desert, either buried or just lying out there, that have been beheaded,” she said.

The anchor notes that he couldn’t find “any beheadings in any kind of news search.”

Watch:

The Arizona Guardian followed up, asking the state’s county coroners — who would examine any body connected with a crime — if they’d seen the headless bodies from the desert .

They hadn’t.

(Although one coroner, gruesomely, told the paper they did sometimes get human skulls– but not as a result of a fatal beheading. Such skulls are found after people die in the desert and “the animals … get a hold of them and start moving their body parts around,” the coroner said.)

Asked for comment, a spokesman for Brewer told the Guardian said the governor had never said anyone was beheaded inside Arizona. “I’m not aware of any statements where the governor specifies where any crimes were committed,” he said. On the contrary, he claimed that Brewer was talking about the fear that crimes that occur in Mexico could spread to Arizona.

“That report, which is based on other news reports, suggests that the drug cartels who operate on both sides of the U.S./Mexico border, have not beheaded their victims,” the spokesman, Paul Senseman, told Politico. “Even a cursory check of news stories on the internet suggests otherwise.” Perhaps his boss should have done one before appearing on news programs to make such a claim.

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Foxheads freak out when Rep. Linda Sanchez points out the white supremacists lurking behind Arizona’s immigration law

Crooks and Liars- By David Neiwert Friday Jun 04, 2010 11:30am

All day yesterday on Fox, the talking/shrieking heads were all worked up about some comments from Rep. Linda Sanchez about Arizona’s SB1070:

A California congresswoman is pointing the finger at white supremacist groups, who she says have inspired Arizona’s new law cracking down on illegal immigrants.

Rep. Linda Sanchez, D-Calif., told a Democratic Club on Tuesday that white supremacist groups are influencing lawmakers to adopt laws that will lead to discrimination.

“There’s a concerted effort behind promoting these kinds of laws on a state-by-state basis by people who have ties to white supremacy groups,” said the lawmaker, who is of Mexican descent. “It’s been documented. It’s not mainstream politics.”

Oh my God! Somebody tossed a little Baby Ruth of  Truth into the swimming pool!

Rick Folbaum told Jon Scott that Sanchez got her information from those notorious dispensers of inconvenient information, a left-wing blogger. (Hey, it coulda been C&L.) Megyn Kelly demanded of Clarissa Martinez of the National Council of La Raza that she denounce these horrendous words. And Sean Hannity didn’t even bother to query into whether what Sanchez said might be accurate — he just ran a quick segment sneering at her “Liberal Lie”.

The problem they have is that it’s in fact perfectly accurate. Sanchez may have gotten the information from a blogger, but it’s more than likely the blog got its information from the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League — both of which have, as Sanchez suggested, fully documented that a number of the leading “respectable” anti-immigration organizations are in fact fronts created by white-supremacist ideologues.

You see, Fox and everyone else has been running commentary from Kris Kobach, a well-paid lackey for the Federation for American Immigration Reform. Kobach has been boasting on Fox and elsewhere that he and his fellows at FAIR are helping to push the Arizona immigration law in other states as well.

Well, FAIR is exactly what Linda Sanchez described. And it’s not exactly news, either. Here’s the SPLC’s rundown on the three main groups involved in promoting the Arizona law:

FAIR, which Tanton founded and where he remains on the board, has been listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Among the reasons are its acceptance of $1.2 million from the Pioneer Fund, a group founded to promote the genes of white colonials that funds studies of race, intelligence and genetics. FAIR has also hired as key officials men who also joined white supremacist groups. It has board members who regularly write for hate publications. It promotes racist conspiracy theories about Latinos. And it has produced television programming featuring white nationalists.

CIS was conceived by Tanton and began life as a program of FAIR. CIS presents itself as a scholarly think tank that produces serious immigration studies meant to serve “the broad national interest.” But the reality is that CIS has never found any aspect of immigration that it liked, and it has frequently manipulated data to achieve the results it seeks. Its executive director last fall posted an item on the conservative National Review Online website about Washington Mutual, a bank that had earlier issued a press release about its inclusion on a list of “Business Diversity Elites” compiled by Hispanic Business magazine. Over a copy of the bank’s press release, the CIS leader posted a headline — “Cause and Effect?” — that suggested a link between the bank’s opening its ranks to Latinos and its subsequent collapse.

Like CIS, NumbersUSA bills itself as an organization that operates on its own and rejects racism completely. In fact, NumbersUSA was for the first five years of its existence a program of U.S. Inc., a foundation run by Tanton to fund numerous nativist groups, and its leader was an employee of that foundation for a decade. He helped edit Tanton’s racist journal, The Social Contract, and was personally introduced by Tanton to a leader of the Pioneer Fund. He also edited a book by Tanton and another Tanton employee that was banned by the Canadian border officials as hate literature, and on one occasion spoke to the Council of Conservative Citizens, a hate group which has called blacks “a retrograde species of humanity.”

Together, FAIR, CIS and NumbersUSA form the core of the nativist lobby in America. In 2007, they were key players in derailing bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform that had been expected by many observers to pass. Today, these organizations are frequently treated as if they were legitimate, mainstream commentators on immigration. But the truth is that they were all conceived and birthed by a man who sees America under threat by non-white immigrants. And they have never strayed far from their roots.

The SPLC has further details about John Tanton and about FAIR, notably the accumulated record that induced the SPLC to designate it a hate group:

Founded by Tanton in 1979, FAIR has long been marked by anti-Latino and anti-Catholic attitudes. It has mixed this bigotry with a fondness for eugenics, the idea of breeding better humans discredited by its Nazi associations. It has accepted $1.2 million from an infamous, racist eugenics foundation. It has employed officials in key positions who are also members of white supremacist groups. Recently, it has promoted racist conspiracy theories about Mexico’s secret designs on the American Southwest and an alternative theory alleging secret plans to merge the United States, Mexico and Canada. Just last February, a senior FAIR official sought “advice” from the leaders of a racist Belgian political party.

It’s not just the SPLC that has reached this conclusion. The Anti-Defamation League’s assessment falls along similar lines.

Finally, it’s worth remembering that the two people most associated with SB1070 in Arizona — its coauthor, State Sen. Russell Pearce, and the law-enforcement officer whose immigration obsession inspired the law, Maricopa County’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio — themselves in fact have documented associations with Arizona neo-Nazis.

Fox may think they can whip this up, bloody shirt style, in favor of the Arizona law’s advocates. I’d wager those same people are wishing they’d just let it quietly drop. Because Linda Sanchez told the truth, and they all know it.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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DOJ, Arizona officials meet over immigration law

Huff Post- PAUL DAVENPORT and PETE YOST | May 29, 2010 02:08 AM EST | AP

PHOENIX — Justice Department officials told Arizona’s attorney general and aides to the governor Friday that the federal government has serious reservations about the state’s new immigration law. They responded that a lawsuit against the state isn’t the answer.

“I told them we need solutions from Washington, not more lawsuits,” said Attorney General Terry Goddard, a Democrat.

The Justice Department initiated separate meetings by phone and face-to-face in Phoenix with Goddard and aides to Republican Gov. Jan Brewer to reach out to Arizona’s leaders and elicit information from state officials regarding the Obama administration’s concerns about the new law.

The strong message that the Justice Department representatives delivered at the private meetings – first with Goddard, then with Brewer’s staff – left little doubt that the Obama administration is prepared to go to court if necessary in a bid to block the new law, which takes effect July 29.

Goddard said he noted that five privately filed lawsuits already are pending in federal court to challenge the law.

“Every possible argument is being briefed,” said Goddard, who is running unopposed for his party’s nomination for the governor’s race.

Brewer, who is seeking re-election, later said in a statement that her legal team told the Justice Department officials that the law would be “vigorously defended all the way to the United States Supreme Court if necessary.”

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