April 28th, 2010
02:47 PM ET

Tea Partiers to illegal immigrants: 'Sign guestbook'

Lee Earle, left, and Ronald Ludders of Phoenix support Arizona's new immigration law.

Lee Earle, a self-identified “Tea Party facilitator” in Arizona, ground zero of the immigration debate, wants you to know that he supports immigration. He considers it the lifeblood of American society and the backbone of our economy – if it’s done legally.

“We want immigration. We need immigration! All we want is for people to sign the guestbook at the door,” said Earle, a Phoenix resident. “Being an illegal immigrant in Arizona is like trespassing. If you’re in my house and you’re not invited, then I have every right to send you out.”

Earle says he supports Arizona’s controversial new law targeting illegal immigration because it lets local law enforcement do what the federal government should be doing to stop people from entering the country unlawfully.

“When people come here without permission, when they come here illegally, they automatically become victims of the coyotes who bring them over and the employers who take advantage of their cheap labor,” Earle said. “Let them come legally so they can take advantage of all the wonderful services and opportunities this great nation has to offer and they can contribute in a meaningful way.”

Earle, a loquacious retiree who gesticulates frequently as he fires off in a stream-of-consciousness manner, shared his thoughts Tuesday night before a legislative district meeting at the Jumbo Buffet in a strip mall in southwest Phoenix.

Dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and jeans, his long gray hair pulled back, Earle said he blames health care, education and incarceration for illegal immigrants for contributing to the state’s $2 billion budget deficit.

“It’s a monetary thing for the state, because I’m a taxpayer but also a human concerned because they can’t take advantage of our legal system because they’re afraid of being deported,” he said.

Earle’s friend and fellow Tea Partier Ronald Ludders dismissed with a wave of the hand the suggestion that the bill encourages racial profiling.

“Illegal is not a race," said Ludders, who, like Earle, is a Republican precinct committeeman for his legislative district. “Law enforcement will be looking for people who they have reasonable suspicion to believe are breaking the law. They cannot stop them based on the color of their skin.”

Both men say this is not about hating Hispanics: Ludders has a home in Mexico, and Earle lives in a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood.

“This is about fixing a problem that has been plaguing our communities for a long time. If the federal government isn’t going to do anything, I’m proud of Arizona for stepping up to the plate,” Earle said.

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Filed under: Arizona • Immigration • U.S.
soundoff (1,254 Responses)
  1. Stan

    Here is the easiest fix to the immigration problem: a National ID Card, but our Federal Government doesn't yet have the guts to allow it. Plastic is cheaper to issue than building fences or hiring border guards with high tech and expensive equipment. An ID card for everyone is democratic and equal.
    If you don't have one, you are not allowed to have a job, drive a car or take advantage of medical services.

    I have to carry a driver's license in order to drive a car and to prove who I am to any law enforcement officer. I have to carry a social security card for ID whenever I open a bank account or apply for a new credit card, I have to show my Social Security card to apply for Medicare.

    The point is that one more card in my wallet and the wallets of all citizens and legal immigrants would be no big deal. I can't cash a check if I'm stupid enough to leave my ID at home. So if any citizen or legal immigrant is dumb enough to leave home without it, then it's his own fault for being hassled if stopped by the police. And if you're here illegally, Adios amigo.

    In Mexico, I couldn't pull off any of the stunts that are done here daily by illegal Mexicans. It would be great if 12 million Mexicans went back and fought bravely for identical rights in Mexico rather than expect the US to give them everything they can't get in their own country.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Ryan

    Will anyone who is against this bill have the courage step up to the plate and say what you all are implying when you rant against the "teabaggers" and

    Very few of you against the bill say a thing to acknowledge the serious drain that they put on social resources via medical care and education for 'anchor children'

    1) We should grant full amnesty to all illegal immigrants who are working
    2) We should not stop people from crossing the border and staying in America illegally
    3) We should give illegal immigrants the same social services as citizens and legal residents

    When you don't acknowledge the problem and just make fun of 'teabaggers', these statements are the impression you give off

    April 28, 2010 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  3. ME

    The best one yet!!! THANKS MIKE!!!!

    April 28, 2010 at 10:43 pm | Report abuse |
  4. nonamenana

    I want more cops in the states which border on the north to seek out blue eyed blonds who sneak across for Canada every day. Target the ones with British accests or who speak French. They should be arrested. I am tired of supporting them and giving them work and free health care. They will break our budget!!
    What is wrong with the Tea Party, why are the ignoring a huge immigration problem in the north to focus only on the southern border...sound self serving to me. Come on Partiers...kick up some dust up north!!

    April 28, 2010 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
  5. emtz

    it´s really shameful, that so many american´s see us as the scam of the states! we dont ask for anything, thus we can´t get any type of government ¨help"(walfer) because we are illegal, and also we are not taking any jobs from any american, why do you think they hire illegals, cheap labor force, but yes we pay taxes, they assign us a number call "tin" to file taxes, but dont claim any benefits! its stupid, out of every payroll check, all type of deductions, federal, state, social security, medicare, etc, etc. who keep all of that? the government, who's the government? every american citizen, and screw us, but guess what? can we do anything about it?, no we have no RIGHTS! we are at the mercy of the americans who want to "help" us! I want to go to school, yes I can! BUT no benefits, no financial aid, no scholarships, college unite cost: rate at international $260 per unit, plus books etc, that means no!. want to go to hospital, no insurance, no treatment of any kind. one time my brother smashed his finger went to the hospital, they asked him, do u have insurance? :NO, wrong answer, chop his finger off! Can we drive? yes we can but at very expensive price, one time i was driving at night, got pulled over, reason: one headlight off,( dumb toyota defects. it was a defective prius), the cop made it a big deal, i was a threat to everyone, not because of the headlight,(i bang on it, it came back on!) but because no diver license, car impounded, cost $600 to get it out! plus $1400 ticket for no license. I have read the dumb dmv book several times, but because i don't have the plastic. i been in the "process""limbo" pending! waiting for a response from the wack social security administration for 10 years, and nothing! LIVING THE AMERICAN DREAM: PRICELESS

    April 28, 2010 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Cyrus Jones

    La Alacrana – – you ignorant SOB.... The consitution and bill of rights was adopted in 1791... 74 years before MY African American brothers were afforded equal rights... It's not worth anything more than the paper it was written on or the wigs the white men who wrote it wore...

    Do some reading and educate yourself that things that are written are done so based on society rules of the time.. At that time, all men were created equal... except for black men... so.. how do you hold it up today seeing as the guys who wrote it don't subscribe to what we know and feel today...

    -Cyrus Jones

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Californian

    I am a 50 yr old. 30 year taxpaying California citizen. College Grad. I will die before going to the hospital emergency room for emergency medical care. Why? I am "white", which is a label I never agreed to, and am ignored in the ER. It is full of illegal spanish speaking welfare bums, there with 15 family members, for one persons cold/cough. Rarely an emergency, but The staff bends over backwards to help them, at cost to me ; my taxes. Theres the $40/hour translator etc , a med-ical worker, etc and the doctors and nurses. The mexican pays nothing. I have no insurance since Im self-empolyed, and no healthcare. The government just bleeds me in property taxes, sales taxes, utility taxes, etc and our over priced mandatory auto insurance (another tax since the gov requires it). The rule/law that hospitals must treat these people for free MUST BE CHANGED ASAP. Would some politician please get rid of it?? Its bankrupting all of us in California.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Eric

    What a joke, this guy calls himself a member of the Tea Party, which would make you think he gets the concept of Libertarian principles. The objection to this law is not about protecting illegals, its about protecting the rights of US Citizens. Anyone with a shred of knowledge about our country knows that the principles of our legal system are meant to protect the innocent even if the guilty walk. Its better for the guilty to go unpunished than it is for the innocent to be persecuted. Find me a Founding Father that ever made a statement to the contrary.

    You can kill the fleas on a dog by throwing the dog in a fireplace. Unfortunately, you kill the dog too... I am all for better border control and deportation of known illegals, however you gotta catch 'em fair and not at the expense of the civil rights of US citizens.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  9. todd stevens

    So are people suggesting that only illegals will be targeted?

    How about this, if you are legal, and a cop pulls you over for questioning, Arizona has to pay you $1000.

    That way, cops will only question people they are sure of, and not profile people.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Ryan

    Someone our of the 'undocumented supporters' camp please at least acknowledge that at least a good proportion of you believe in 1) amnesty, 2) that we shouldn't forcibly stop border crossings, 3) spend meaningful effort to find and deport illegals

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. NoNewsISGOOdNew

    Notice when its "for" illegal aliens its people talking, when its FOR getting rid of illegals its got a name this time its tea baggers. they must have full time psycologists at cnn to spin thier stories

    April 28, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Wyllyam

    In my best german accent:

    "May I see your paperz? No paperz? Please, follow zat man in the police uniform. Next."

    "Shultz!!!"

    April 28, 2010 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  13. debi

    To all my white skinned friends out there, remember we came from imimgrants. We took this wonderful country from the American Indians. Let us be thankful that we are living in this free land. Think about it; this is just being prejudice. I understand what your trying to do; we just need to find a better law.

    Now I hear that AL will only allow English in there state. I think it's wonderful when you know several languages. I miss my great gram speaking German.

    Let's not get carried away here. Where is our faith and love.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mike

    Read the bill people. Cops can not stop someone b/c of race. Yes the bill should have been worded better, but it is no different in principal than the other 70 or so "ICE" laws in this country. Cops need reasonable suspicion for asking for identification (much like with DUI pullovers) and also must approach people in a lawful way. The population of AZ is about 30% hispanic and this will not hold up in courts if a cop does this without following proper procedure. The bill also states that the jurisdictions will cover the legal costs if they are proven to have acted inappropriately, which means that the police will not be doing this lightly. They will do what is happening in many jurisdictions, which is if you have someone detained for another crime or investigation then you run their prints and records in the ICE system to prove their legal status. Arizona should reword it, but the media and all you critics should actually read the bill first ( it is only 17 pages and the part that gets all the focus is just one part of one clause of one section)

    April 28, 2010 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Eric from Florida

    I have read almost 700 comments here but I have yet to read a comment that can even come close to justifying why we (US) should accept ILLEGAL immigration and be happy with it.
    Some say that the police shouldn't be checking people's identification, although every country does that, as they should and we have been doing it since we have been a country.
    Some say it is racial profiling.. Well, if you border Mexico you should conclude that most will come from Mexico... But keep in mind that the police are somebody you know, possibly a member of your family. Do you really think these people are the Gestapo?.. They are our brothers and sisters, or sister's husbands/wives.., etc.. They are you and me.. They are us..
    And if you say "Well, we were here first so we have a right to be here, then I say.. we Homo Sapiens all started out at the same time so we all have a right to be "here".. But we must abide by the current laws of the current government..
    Please!!.. Any of you that are against enforcing ILLEGAL immigration laws, please tell me what your justification is... i'm really growing tired of your attacks against the supporters without providing a solution..
    And please don't tell me that "this" is un-constitutional and "that" is racist.... Tell me how you would solve this serious problem of illegal immigration.

    April 28, 2010 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
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