Last night I traveled to Rockville, MD for a public meeting hosted by Help Save Maryland—a citizens group attempting to bring immigration sanity to Maryland (a tall order!). I didn’t count the attendees but I think about 100 people listened to a powerful speaker line-up introduced by Help Save Maryland’s director Brad Botwin.
Roy Beck of NumbersUSA gave us some shocking statistics on the growth of the immigrant population in the US and noted that the federal government continues, without any abatement in the number of legal immigrants entering the US even in the continued dismal economic climate, to grant more visas. Near the end of the program the audience, which by the way was made up of people of many different races and hues, chuckled when he said the Arizona law isn’t draconian, but what is making it more powerful than it is is the volcanic eruption of the political Left over its passage. For more on Beck, see our Numbers USA link at the top of the page, here, and see my account of Beck’s stellar presence among the hostile Open Border marchers on the mall in March, here.
I was particularly impressed with speaker Leah Durant of Progressives for Immigration Reform a Democrat whose group is against the Open Borders movement with a primary concern for labor issues. It is obvious to any thinking person that flooding the job market with illegal immigrant labor hurts mostly minorities and other low income Americans. She reported that she and her fellow “progressives” had been in to see Rep Maxine Waters that very day to impress upon her the horrible statistics involving black unemployment in the US. She said her group is also concerned with the environmental impact of the exponentially growing immigrant population.
Mike Hethmon, an attorney from the Immigration Reform Law Institute, spoke and answered questions about the Arizona law and gave the audience some background on how long and what it took to bring that bill literally up from the grassroots to passage—it was in the making for years.
There was lots of good back and forth between audience members and speakers (there were other speakers in addition to the three I’ve mentioned), but another highlight for me was to hear from four candidates running for public office in Maryland who shared our views on immigration. There were both Republicans and Democrats represented.