VDARE.com: 05/12/10 - The Peter Morrison Report: Rep. Debbie Riddle Speaks Up Against Illegal Immigration
May 12, 2010, 05:00 AM
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May 12, 2010

The Peter Morrison Report, By Peter Morrison

Rep. Debbie Riddle Speaks Up Against Illegal Immigration

Texas State Representative Debbie Riddle (R-Tomball) found herself in the middle of a firestorm the other day after she gave an interview to an obscure left wing talk show host in Houston.

An attorney named Geoff Berg [Email him] hosts a weekly talk show called Partisan Gridlock on station KFPT which, just like Berg's politics, is on the far left end of the FM dial. KFPT is affiliated with the notoriously radical Radio Pacifica network. For an idea of where Berg and KFPT are coming from, just look at a few of the programs on the station's schedule: Queer Voices, Proyecto Latino Americano, Uprising, Arab Voices, Nuestra Palabra and Voz de la Tierra.

Berg was interviewing Rep. Riddle about her call for a crackdown on illegal immigration. Rep. Riddle has promised to introduce legislation this year that will be very similar to the recent bill passed in Arizona; in other words, she wants a law on illegal immigration that will actually be effective.

During the interview, Berg employed a typical left wing tactic—he prefaced his question with "Without making it a racial issue...", and then proceeded to bluntly make opposition to illegal immigration into a racial issue.

Berg said that the vote on the tough illegal immigration bill in Arizona broke down along racial lines—with almost all of the white legislators voting for it, and almost all of the non-white legislators opposing it. He then asked Rep. Riddle how she planned to generate support for her bill from "people of color."

That's how liberals talk when they supposedly want to avoid "making it a racial issue." They love to play the race card themselves, and then turn around and accuse their conservative opponents of injecting race into the discussion. Clearly, Berg was being disingenuous; he was hoping to goad Rep. Riddle into either making a verbal "gaffe" that could be twisted and denounced as "racist" by leftists, or shaming her into backing off of her tough stance on immigration by playing the race card.

This time, though, it didn't work. Debbie Riddle simply stated things matter-of-factly. She told Berg that it would be hard to generate equal support for action on illegal immigration from every group:

"When you have people that are used to entitlements, then they like the entitlements and they want the entitlements to keep coming."

That may not be politically correct, but it's true that illegal aliens do get entitlements and they want to continue to get them.

Of course, there are many conservative Hispanic Americans who are strongly opposed to both illegal immigration and free handouts from the government, but, if voting patterns are any guide, then they are unfortunately in the minority, and pretending otherwise is nothing but intellectual dishonesty. In 2008, Hispanics voted 2-1 for Obama, even after John McCain shamelessly pandered to them. They didn't vote overwhelmingly for Obama and the Democrats because they want to see a reduction in entitlement spending.

It's even more dishonest to pretend that entitlements aren't one of the main reasons illegals are coming here by the millions. In just one city in America, Los Angeles, the local government is spending nearly fifty million dollars per month on welfare and food stamps for the children of illegals.

Educating them may be even more costly—the Supreme Court ruled decades ago that it's somehow unconstitutional to deny free public schooling to the children of illegals. For all the problems facing our schools, they are far superior to the average school in Mexico and we spend billions of dollars a year on educating the children of illegals.

The same goes for health care—politicians in Washington have ruled that hospitals must treat illegal aliens in emergency rooms, and they take advantage of this entitlement to the tune of billions more each year. In California alone, over eighty hospitals have closed down because they went bankrupt treating illegal aliens who don't pay.

In Houston, illegals constitute nearly twenty percent of patients in the Harris County Hospital District, and officials there are warning that the county hospital system may not have a viable future if they don't attract more paying customers to cover the costs of treating illegals. [Illegal immigrants may be majority at Harris hospitals, By Todd Ackerman, Houston Chronicle, March 23, 2010]

Even though she spoke the truth, and didn't come close to committing a "gaffe", liberals immediately denounced Debbie Riddle as a "racist."

Of course, it's becoming clearer every day that anyone who opposes illegal immigration is a "racist" in the eyes of liberals. It's been said that a racist is simply a conservative who's winning an argument with a liberal. If left-wingers can't refute someone, they simply resort to calling them vicious names.

It didn't stop with "racist", either—she's been called "an idiot" and "a Nazi", and many other names too crude to repeat here.

Thankfully, Rep. Riddle not only has the courage to speak the truth, she also refuses to be intimidated. Most politicians would have backed off and groveled an apology in the face of this onslaught, but not Debbie Riddle. She's standing firm, and issued a statement defending her remarks about why race based groups like the Mexican-American Legislative Caucus oppose enforcing our immigration laws:

"...I gave my honest answer: I think that those lawmakers believe that illegal immigrants are entitled to services that we reserve for our citizens, services that must be paid for by the tax dollars of our citizens, and are too often given to illegal immigrants instead of our citizens. I think this is not just wrong, not just unjust, but truly and utterly immoral in every sense of the word.

As our state deals with the largest financial crisis we've seen in recent memory, lawmakers have unpleasant and unpopular decisions that must be made. We must choose to provide for the safety and security of our citizens before we make concessions to those who do not have a legal right to be here in the first place.

I will not send our citizens to the back of the line in order to appease the politically-correct left."

It's extremely heartening to see a politician speak the truth and let the chips fall where they may. Not to mention Rick Perry's name, but unfortunately, some of our politicians have "concerns" about an illegal immigration bill that would enforce our laws and say that it "would not be the right direction for Texas."

Meanwhile, Debbie Riddle simply pointed out the obvious—it's the organized liberal Hispanic groups that openly base their policies on race when it comes to illegal immigration, not conservatives.

Politicians like her are a rare specimen these days, and she is to be commended for putting American citizens first, and for having the courage to speak the truth and not back down when liberals go on the war path.

Peter Morrison (email him) is a businessman living in Lumberton, Texas with his wife and four children. He currently serves on the Lumberton ISD School Board and as treasurer of the Hardin County Republican Party. He says "I believe deeply in the principles of limited constitutional government, the sanctity of life and that our state and nation should be run under Thomas Jefferson's principle of 'Equal Rights for All, Special Privileges for None.'" This article is from his free newsletter, which features commentary about current events of interest to Texans—sign up here.