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4/29/2005 - ( CD - Minutemen ) Gov. of Calif praises Minutemen campaign...

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  • Al Soto
    Los Angeles Times ... been ... Arnold ... that ... the ... is ... since ... They ve ... just ... hard. ... there ... patrol ... border ... illusions ...
    Message 1 of 1 , May 2 1:00 PM
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      Los Angeles Times
      >Gov. Praises 'Minuteman' Campaign
      >Schwarzenegger says group's patrols against illegal immigrants have
      been
      >effective. One critic calls remarks 'nothing short of base racism.'
      >By Peter Nicholas and Robert Salladay
      >Times Staff Writers
      >
      >April 29, 2005
      >
      >SACRAMENTO - Calling the nation's borders dangerously porous, Gov.
      Arnold
      >Schwarzenegger on Thursday praised the private "Minuteman" campaign
      that
      >uses armed volunteers to stop illegal immigrants from crossing into
      the
      >U.S.
      >
      >Schwarzenegger said in a radio interview that the federal government
      is
      >failing to secure the border with Mexico, and he cast the hundreds of
      >private citizens who have been patrolling the Arizona-Mexico border
      since
      >April 1 as a popular response to government inaction.
      >
      >"I think they've done a terrific job," Schwarzenegger said of the
      >"Minuteman" volunteers, who plan to expand to California in June.
      "They've
      >cut down the crossing of illegal immigrants a huge percentage. So it
      just
      >shows that it works when you go and make an effort and when you work
      hard.
      >It's a doable thing."
      >
      >The governor added that, "It's just that our federal government is not
      >doing their job. It's a shame that the private citizen has to go in
      there
      >and start patrolling our borders."
      >
      >President Bush has denounced the Minuteman volunteers as vigilantes.
      >
      >U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) expressed surprise that
      >Schwarzenegger would be "praising efforts by untrained volunteers to
      patrol
      >the borders. The best course . would be to add an additional 2,000
      border
      >patrol agents."
      >
      >The leader of a Mexican American group called the governor's comments
      >"shameful" and "nothing short of base
      racism."
      >
      >"I think we're seeing the real Arnold Schwarzenegger. The mask has now
      >fallen," said Nativo V. Lopez, state national president of the Mexican
      >American Political Assn. "Those of immigrant stock should have no
      illusions
      >about what his real sentiments and feelings are toward them."
      >
      >Just last week, Schwarzenegger and his aides sought to clarify his
      >statement to a convention of newspaper publishers that the nation
      should
      >"close the borders." Before his speech was over, an aide told
      reporters
      >that Schwarzenegger had meant to say that the U.S. should secure its
      >borders - not shut them down.
      >
      >Schwarzenegger has frequently sought advice from former Gov. Pete
      Wilson, a
      >Republican who used the issue of illegal immigration to fuel his
      reelection
      >campaign in 1994. Schwarzenegger also has hired several former Wilson
      staff
      >members, including
      his chief of staff, Pat Clarey.
      >
      >An organizer of what is being called the "Minuteman Project," Chris
      Simcox,
      >said he welcomed Schwarzenegger's endorsement.
      >
      >"It's gratifying to see that elected officials are responding to the
      will
      >of the people," Simcox said in an interview Thursday.
      >
      >He said there are about 15,000 volunteers who have committed to
      patrolling
      >the border in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. The group is
      also
      >incorporating, assembling a staff and opening a national fundraising
      >campaign, Simcox said. He added that he planned to call
      Schwarzenegger.
      >
      >Volunteers may carry firearms if they choose, he said, but they obey
      all
      >local laws. Their practice is not to apprehend people but to report
      >instances of illegal crossings, he said.
      >
      >"We don't involve ourselves in taking the law into our own hands," he
      said.
      >
      >Margita Thompson, the governor's press secretary, said: "At this
      point, the
      >governor does not oppose" the group coming to California.
      >
      >As far as the charge of racism against the governor, she said: "It's
      not
      >racist to ask the federal government to enforce its laws. Everyone
      should
      >be united in wanting to protect our national security."
      >
      >In his interview with KFI-AM (640), the governor said he was deeply
      >troubled by illegal crossings and what he described as an inadequate
      >federal effort to tighten borders. He said he was especially disturbed
      by
      >footage he had seen recently on Fox News showing "hundreds and
      hundreds of
      >illegal immigrants coming across the border."
      >
      >Schwarzenegger said the nation is sending the wrong signal by making
      water
      >available to migrants as a convenience.
      >
      >Humanitarian and religious groups, such
      as Humane Borders and No More
      >Deaths, provide water for immigrants crossing the border. Federal
      wildlife
      >officials have provided water stations in the desert for animals but
      have
      >been criticized for not providing enough for people.
      >
      >Said Schwarzenegger, "What we're doing basically is, by not really
      securing
      >the borders, we're saying: 'Look, here are the various water stations.
      Here
      >are the places where you can cross the borders. Here is where we're
      going
      >to help you.' The whole system is set up to really invite people to
      come in
      >here illegally, and that has to stop."
      >
      >Enrique Morones, president of the Border Angels, an immigrant rights
      group,
      >responded to the governor's comments. "I assure you, nobody is coming
      here
      >for the water, and the stations we have set up by various
      organizations is
      >a humanitarian effort.
      >
      >"We don't
      respond to Arnold Schwarzenegger; we respond to a higher
      >authority. We're a nonpolitical, humanitarian organization."
      >
      >Asked by the hosts of the "John and Ken Show" why Bush called the
      >volunteers vigilantes, Schwarzenegger said: "I really cannot tell you
      >exactly what his thinking is. I'm sure he's trying to solve the
      problem as
      >well as anyone can. And he maybe has more information than you and I
      have.
      >Why he has a policy about the border the way he has, I don't know.
      I've not
      >had that conversation with him.
      >
      >"But the next time I see him, I will have that conversation."
      >
      >Schwarzenegger's opponents in the Legislature voiced outrage at the
      >governor's comments.
      >
      >Aides to Assembly Speaker Fabian Nu´┐Żez (D-Los Angeles) said he was
      furious
      >and promptly called Schwarzenegger to complain.
      >
      >Assemblyman Hector De La Torre, a Democrat from South
      Gate, blasted
      the
      >governor's comments as "scapegoating and immigrant bashing."
      >
      >"To support vigilantism is completely against the oath he took" to
      uphold
      >the law, De La Torre said. "It goes way beyond normal law enforcement,
      >normal border patrol jurisdiction. It's just off the charts. For him
      to say
      >this puts him to the right of President Bush. This is completely out
      of the
      >mainstream in California."
      >
      >In the same radio interview, the governor also asked a
      Spanish-language Los
      >Angeles television station, KRCA-TV Channel 62, to remove a billboard
      it
      >erected with the words "Los Angeles, Mexico." The governor said such
      >sentiments - implying that Los Angeles was now part of Mexico - would
      >encourage illegal immigration.
      >
      >Some conservatives welcomed Schwarzenegger's comments.
      >
      >"Obviously, we are very happy the governor is beginning to side
      more
      and
      >more with those of us who have been taking the problems with illegal
      aliens
      >seriously," said Mike Spence, president of the California Republican
      >Assembly, a volunteer group. "The governor gets that illegal aliens
      are a
      >problem facing California."
      >
      >Times staff writer Richard Marosi contributed to this report from San
      >Diego.


      Buy Hydrogen or Hybrid Vehicles, not Hummers.  The government and the NEWS should reflect, not determine, the desires of the people.The news is to be reported not a melodrama of constant trivia. The founding fathers knew that government is always corrupt, that is why they gave us civil liberties.  The people must lead to survive corrupt governments. Read the constitution. (In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this includes information for research and educational purposes.)  Al Soto (c) 2005

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