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. Rock God

    Something tells me these Tea Partiers are not concerned about illegal immigrants from Russia or Canada.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:44 am | Report abuse |
  2. Q

    Mike- Thanks for posting the link. The law does address both of my previous concerns (post 933) and I don't see any issues beyond those already present in every day law enforcement.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  3. hueygunner

    April 28th, 2010
    3:42 pm ET

    Just for clarification to the comment made on 04/28/10 at 3pm, according to the 14th amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the amendment's Equal Protection Clause requires states to provide equal protection under the law to ALL PEOPLE within their jurisdictions, this would include "illegal immigrants".
    Posted by: Jacob


    The Second Amendment (part of the Bill of Rights) says I have the RIGHT to bear arms but I cannot carry a weapon into a Federal building or an airport and many other places.

    So much for the Bill of Rights! And the 14th amendment stipulates:

    Section. 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

    Did you catch the part about being born or naturalized?

    April 29, 2010 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
  4. Spanish American

    As a concerned American citizen, I'm concerned about all illegal aliens Rock God.

    Thanks for asking.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
  5. Patricia

    Lowflier84– since when is this law in Arizona stopping all illegal immigration? Was that written into the bill? This law will not deter illegal immigration. The issue is much too big to be settled by this one law. Also, someone against the law is not supporting any of those things you stated. In fact, I bet most of those who are against the law are also against trafficking, drug dealing, murders, thieves, and men, women and children dying or being forced into prostitution. Call me crazy, but I think that is a pretty normal stance, for a liberal or conservative or inbetween or anything. Quite frankly, it's actually the militarization of the border, meaning the increased level of danger and difficulty of crossing, that force those who are truly desperate enough to leave their home in Mexico or other parts of Central America to use coyotes or struggle so much that they do die in the desert. Furthermore, the drug dealing/smuggling issue is not limited to Mexico, as the US is the number one supplier of those guns/weapons used in the trafficking and gang wars.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  6. Aviate

    “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.”

    So Mr. Earle, were you and other white Arizonians "invited" by the local native tribes before you moved into their house? Did you sign their guestbook?

    I didn't think so...

    And I guess they have every right to send you out, too. By your logic.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  7. Dave

    The Bill of Rights says nothing about INALIENABLE RIGHTS for ALL PEOPLE!!!! That is the Declaration of Independence. Plus the Bill of Rights does not apply to all people. This has been discussed in the Supreme Court otherwise we could not wage war on other countries or have immigration laws at all.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  8. Who am I to judge?

    I support those comments, both above and below this one, that want to profile scum bags who look like child molesters or adulterers or whatever else! How would you like to be profiled yourself? You may not have such strong convictions about your current stance on the issue if the tables were turned on you.

    I want anyone out there in Arizona that looks like a moron to be detained for extensive probative questioning for breaking laws, ethics violations, and moral ineptitude; they are draining resources, causing accidents on the roadways, wreaking havov in public places, degrading our national image, and dreaming up their own bone head laws. I love it!

    April 29, 2010 at 12:49 am | Report abuse |
  9. BillV

    I think I finally understand the few that are against this law. Let me know if this scenario makes sense:

    I walk into your house uninvited, make myself a sandwich and sit down to watch your tv. You call the cops, they arrive and I tell them that this is my house. So as not to impose on my civil rights(protected under the constitution), the officer should just take my word for it. If you try to pursue this further, by liberal definition, you are a racist.

    Does that about sum it up?

    April 29, 2010 at 12:49 am | Report abuse |
  10. Robert

    Good Post Alex. People don't seem to want to put themselves in the shoes of the legal latino walking around with no id on them. (PS-I'm white). They only think about the illegals and hey if a few legal immigrants get harassed; well that's fine.
    PEOPLE WAKE UP-The things roll down. You basically want to give police the authority to stop any of you ,at anytime, for any reason (see drug war), under the suspicion that you may be an illegal immigrant. WHAT? My rights won't be infringed upon in that way "I'm a red, white & blue born white American!" GUESS AGAIN-I'll guarantee you there is nothing in that law that mentions anything about race and its an authoritarian key to pull over ANYBODY and violate your 4th amendment rights.
    The problem has nothing to do with Illegals. America has always had open arms to immigrants willing to come here and work hard; but the path has been made so expensive and complicated that it is near impossible to get legal immigration. They do jobs we don't want to, for less money, which in turn make our products cost less. The ISSUE is our Welfare State that needs to be dumped so we are taking care of no one but ourselves!
    I don't know about the rest of you out there, but I'm a parent and I love my child more than anything in the world and if I'm in some crap hole country and can possibly improve my daughter's life by illegally crossing into another country(knowing it may take me 8 years salary and another 3 years waiting to do it legally)....I'll race you to the fence!

    April 29, 2010 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  11. Dave

    Bingo BillV

    April 29, 2010 at 12:53 am | Report abuse |
  12. Spanish American

    And I'll hopefully be the first to catch you and deport you Robert. Go to Mexico tho, you don't get deported, you get 2 years in prison.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
  13. Dallas Texas


    April 29, 2010 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
  14. Robert

    I wonder how many people posting here; that are so in favor of this law; know their genealogy well enough to know whether or not "their" forefathers came here illegally? Here; I'll make it easy for you->Are you an American Indian?

    April 29, 2010 at 12:55 am | Report abuse |
  15. Dumazz Sez

    You guys are acting like cops never break any laws. And that cops never profile racially. First of all, its the ones with authority that usually break the rules. And I know about racial profiling. I was made to kneel on a curb, handcuffed for 2 hours while my car was searched. They said they smelled something suspicious. Did they find anything, no. I have no criminal record, and my car had no warrants. So why was i pulled over? I wasnt speeding. It was all because I'm asian and I drove a lowered car. The fact is, cops abuse any power they are given. It may not be true of all cops, but it only takes one bad apple to ruin the bunch. Thank God for Rev. Al Sharpton! As annoying as he is, atleast he is trying to bring some attention to this stupid racist law.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
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