Frank Cannon and Jeffrey Bell of the conservative American Principles Project published a warning to other conservative groups to stay away from three anti-immigrant groups. Here is what they said:
As the immigration debate heats up, the nation’s leading anti-immigration groups — Federation for American Immigration Reform, NumbersUSA and Center for Immigration Studies — are once again ramping up their campaign to deny any conceivable path to legal status for undocumented immigrants. They present themselves to Republicans as advocates of the conservative “rule of law” position on the issue and argue that any effort to legalize illegal immigrants is tantamount to “amnesty” and part of the liberal agenda.
But conservatives need to be aware that these groups are not conservative, and their views on immigration are rooted in a two-century-old anti-human, anti-growth worldview.
FAIR, NumbersUSA and CIS were started, and are staffed and funded, by a cabal of…zero population ideologues. They are wedded to the long-discredited Malthusian view that “people are pollution” and believe that the only way to control poverty and other social ills is to limit, and if possible, reduce the population of the planet.
All three groups are the creation of John Tanton, who is (in the words of the Human Life Review article) “the father of the population-control wing of the modern anti-immigration movement”…
Tanton created U.S. Inc. to fund and support projects and organizations dedicated, among other things, to environmental causes, population control and efforts to oppose immigration reform.
In a May 2000 U.S. Inc. memo, Tanton outlines his objectives: “Each constituent project has its own board and runs its own affairs within the overall supervision of the U.S. board. Projects receive contributions and disburse funds in their own name.”
Conservatives have been taking at face value this restrictionist crowd for too long. Beginning around 2006, in fact, many Republicans abandoned the fervently pro-immigration beliefs of Ronald Reagan and began articulating an ugly nativist narrative that has alienated millions of foreign-born and minority voters.
This was no accident. It was part of a Machiavellian plan set up by Tanton and friends. In a 2001 letter recently unearthed from his archives kept by the University of Michigan, Tanton explains his strategy: “We have come up with an idea that can actually move the battle lines on the immigration question in our favor … The goal is to change Republicans’ perception of immigration so that when they encounter the word ‘immigrant,’ their reaction is ‘Democrat.’”
Conservatives need to rethink the immigration issue and return to the welcoming stance that until recently elevated our movement and the nation we love.