PART 1 of 2
Former Arizona State Senator Karen Johnson
October 25, 2011
The campaign to pass "comprehensive immigration reform," or amnesty, is charging like a speeding train at Congress. After the last major attempt went down to defeat in 2007, the open-borders advocates licked their wounds and regrouped, realizing they would have to reframe amnesty to make it look conservative and reduce the pressure on conservative Congressmen. The end result was the Utah Compact, a happy sounding statement of principles regarding immigration.
Although it was superficial and simplistic, the Compact was dripping with all the trappings of conservatism. It came from Utah, a very conservative state. It appeared to be the product of conservative politicians, a conservative think tank, Catholic and Protestant churches, and nonprofits. The Compact was compared to the Mayflower Compact, which lent an air of Americana and patriotism. The Compact spoke of humaneness, family values, and free markets.
The architects of the Compact did everything they could to characterize it as reasonable, sensible, and ... conservative. When the makeover was complete, they began dancing the Compact in front of legislators all over the country to persuade them that the public had had a change of heart on immigration and that they now wanted amnesty. But the Utah Compact was a fake. There was no change of heart. It was all propaganda. (See "Propaganda and the Utah Compact." The Utah Compact was conceived by radical Hispanic advocacy groups and foisted on Utahns through a masterful facilitation process by Carter Livingston of the National Immigration Forum. (See "Who Wrote the Utah Compact."
first clue that the Utah Compact was NOT conservative was the groups that
signed on after it was unveiled in late 2010. There were many with an
obvious financial motive, such as immigration lawyers, who make money
representing illegal aliens in legal proceedings, and businessmen who
want cheap labor. But, in addition, many supporters of the Utah Compact
included left-wing and radical groups in Utah and other states. The following
are only a few of the liberal-to-Marxist groups which support comprehensive
immigration reform and which all signed the Utah Compact:
• Alliance for a Just Society (progressive advocacy)
• American Civil Liberties Union of Utah
• Chairman of the Davis County [Utah] Democrats
• Communidades Unidas
• Enriching Utah Coalition
• Equality Utah (a pro-homosexual civil rights group)
• Human Rights Education Center of Utah (an anti-bullying, homosexual-tolerance group)
• Inclusion Center for Community and Justice (pro-homosexual civil rights)
• National Council of La Raza
• MEChA B Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/Chicano de Aztlan
• Peaceful Uprising
• South Carolina Hispanic Leadership Council
• United for Social Justice
• Utah State Hispanic Democratic Caucus
Notably absent from the list of groups which signed the Compact are conservative organizations. Some would protest that the business organizations and churches count as conservative. But that's only because many people perceive such groups as conservative, not because they truly are. The Catholic Church, for example, while they usually advocate a conservative position on the abortion issue, has long advocated for extreme liberal social-justice policies in other areas, including support for open borders. The Chamber of Commerce and many business associations likewise support amnesty and open borders, although the actual members of such groups may not support that position. Support for the Utah Compact from liberal, progressive, and Marxist groups should raise a red flag. Does anyone really think that such groups would ever advocate for something that was truly conservative? Does anyone really think they would support the Utah Compact if it didn't advance the goal of amnesty?
But it gets worse.
Another hint that the Utah Compact wasn't as conservative as it was cracked up to be came in the form of a conference held in Chicago a week before the Utah Compact was announced. The conference was co-sponsored by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and a group called "People Improving Communities through Organizing" (PICO) The title of the conference was "Justice for Immigrants." Its purpose was to train churches of all denominations to promote the passage of amnesty by Congress.
PICO was founded by a Jesuit priest in 1972 for the purpose of using a congregation-based system of networking to train Catholic and Protestant congregations to organize for political change. PICO uses Saul-Alinsky-type techniques to promote an array of socialist programs, such as national health care, affordable housing, and amnesty. Targeting church congregations gives them an instant base of support for their work. PICO has a large network of more than 1,000 congregations belonging to more than 40 denominations throughout the country that gives them easy access to the minds and ears of millions of people through church newsletters and bulletins.
The "Justice for Immigrants" conference in November, 2010, consisted of three days of workshops, all focused on comprehensive immigration reform. The speakers at the conference included the leaders of some of the most prominent pro-open-borders, progressive/Marxist/liberal groups on the left, including:
Ali Noorani, National Immigration Forum — NIF is the Godfather of the Utah Compact, which would be unveiled a week later. The Forum has ties to the Service Employees International Untion (SEIU), the Arab American Institute, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the National Lawyers Guild (a communist front organization).
Angela Kelley, Center for American Progress (CAP) Funded by George Soros, CAP is a Progressive think tank and supporter of the radical Left and the Democratic Party. It recently came into the spotlight when the sister-in-law of CAP President John Podesta received a large federal grant for a solar development project in New Hampshire. (See "Look Whose Relative Just Got $135.8 Million Energy Loan?") Podesta, a prominent advocate of comprehensive immigration reform, is a former Chief of Staff for the Clinton administration. While serving under Clinton, Podesta pioneered the strategy that became known as "Project Podesta," a combination of unconstitutional tactics designed to allow the President to thwart the will of Congress through Executive Orders, Presidential Directives, vacancy appointments to federal positions, regulatory actions against corporations, White-House sponsored lawsuits, and other acts designed to enlarge the power of the presidency. Podesta has served as independent counsel for ACORN and was the director of the transition team for President Obama. The Center for American Progress is viewed as the mastermind of the agenda of the Obama Administration.
Michele Waslin, Immigration Policy Center. — The IPC is funded by George Soros, the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and other Leftist foundations and has ties to the National Council of La Raza and other radical groups.
Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America's Voice — Sharry is the former Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum. While with the Forum, he helped organize the opposition to Arizona's 2004 ballot initiative (Prop 200) which prohibits illegal aliens from receiving welfare benefits. Prop 200 won, but Frank Sharry didn't give up. Eventually, he started his own organization, America's Voice, and in 2009 successfully demonized broadcaster Lou Dobbs and drove him off CNN. Since then, he has organized opposition to SB1070 in Arizona and 1070-type bills in other states.
Helen Harnett, Heartland Alliance for Human Needs and Human Rights — Chicago-based housing, healthcare, economic security, and legal advocacy group which advocates for amnesty, homosexual rights, and government-supported social services.
The speakers at the "Justice for Immigrants" conference were the heavy hitters of the amnesty movement. The conference included instruction on immigration issues expected to come up in either the 2011 session of Congress or the state legislative sessions, including comprehensive immigration reform (amnesty), administrative advocacy, the DREAM Act, and immigration enforcement issues. There was a session on "best practices in organizing," including how to organize in parishes and congregations, and sessions on how to oppose the arguments for enforcement, the rule of law, and SB1070-type bills in the states. One whole session was devoted solely to understanding and countering SB1070-type laws. The entire three-day conference was a "how-to" on thwarting efforts to get the borders under control.
The Catholic Church and the PICO congregations went home from the conference to await the unveiling of the Utah Compact a week later. Once the Compact was public, the congregations were ready to launch grass-roots campaigns to adopt the Compact in their state and promote comprehensive immigration reform. For the next few months, the churches organized in the congregations, and the Chambers of Commerce worked their state and local affiliates to sell the Utah Compact and the new [phony] conservative image of comprehensive immigration reform.
Behind the scenes, the radical groups provided advice, talking points, and local Hispanic activists as foot solders for demonstrations. It was a battle on two different fronts. At the state legislatures, they were working to defeat "enforcement-first" legislation. In Washington, they were lobbying to pass comprehensive immigration reform, insisting that there was a new mood out in the states — a conservative mood. The message was that America had changed its mind and now favored amnesty. They held up the Utah Compact to prove it. The results began to show in February.
On February 2, 2011, a Georgia coalition of Asian civic and social service organizations and Asian Chambers of Commerce launched the Georgia Compact, known as "Value Georgia."
On February 7, the City Commission of Sarasota, Florida, adopted the Florida Compact, getting the ball rolling in that state. A few months later, a PICO-afililated network of churches in the Orlando area launched the official Florida Compact.
On February 9, Indiana introduced their Compact.
On February 10, the Maine Compact was announced.
a few state compacts in hand, the Chamber of Commerce, the religious Left,
and the radicals were ready for the next step -- an American Compact.
On March 8, 2011, Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, who was one of
the primary sponsors of the Utah Compact, presented his state Compact
to a national meeting of Attorneys General in Washington, D.C.. During
the meeting, he told the audience, "What I'm working for is to try
and expand the Utah Compact and make it a national compact," he said.
("Shurtleff Trying to Convince White House to Adopt the Utah Compact,"
March 8, 2011.) The next day Shurtleff met with White House officials
to provide them with an overview of the Utah Compact and the concept for
a national version. By the end of March, a draft of the national version
of the Utah Compact, called the "America's
Compact," was ready to go.
The Salt Lake Tribune announced the national compact on April 6. "A national version of the Utah Compact is largely written," said the Tribune, "and key officials are aiming for a signing ceremony this summer in Washington, D.C., to propel discussions on immigration reform solutions." Subsequent Tribune editorials urged "federal officials and other states to get behind a national version of the Utah Compact."
The next crucial step in the campaign was to officially introduce the strategy to President Obama and other national leaders and map out the next steps leading to passage of comprehensive immigration reform by Congress. Utah's Attorney General Shurtleff headed back to Washington to present both versions of the Compact to the President and coalition leaders at an immigration summit at the White House. The summit took place on April 19, 2011. Approximately 70 people gathered, including a star-studded list of prominent government officials and open-borders advocates. It should be noted that ONLY open-borders advocates were invited to the summit. No advocates for border security were present. Thus, it was more of an amnesty summit than an immigration summit.
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Among the invited attendees were: former Homeland Security Secretary, Michael Chertoff, and the current Secretary, Janet Napolitano; New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg; Mayor Julian Castro of San Antonio; former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who supports sanctuary cities; John C. Wester, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake and former Chair of the Immigration Committee of the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops; John Podesta, CEO of the Center for American Progress; Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and other cabinet members; Rev. Al Sharpton, President of the National Action Network; U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder; New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly; Bill Bratton, former N.Y. and L.A. Police Commissioner; AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka; the CEO of Facebook; officials from J.P. Morgan Chase; Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America's Voice, the man who fought Arizona's Prop 200 and who claimed credit for driving Lou Dobbs off CNN. Last but not least, was Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum, the Godfather of the Utah Compact and the about-to-be-born national compact. (In Part 2, another open-borders group pushes for amnesty from the Right.) For part two click below.
© 2011 Karen Johnson - All Rights Reserved
Karen Johnson served in the Arizona legislature for 12 years, from 1997 through 2004 (AZ House of Representatives) and 2005 - 2008 (AZ Senate). Her all-time favorite committee assignment was chairing the Federal Mandates and States' Rights Committee. During her service in the legislature, she supported the Second Amendment, individual, property and of course states rights, as well as the Right to Life, and she still does. Karen and her husband, Jerry, have 11 children and 35 grandchildren. She believes strongly in the doctrine of liberty and does not desire to be tethered to ANY particular party.