Posted on September 17, 2004

‘Fire Dreier’ Rally Draws Hundreds Of Protesters

Marianne Love, Pasadena Star News, Sep. 16

GLENDORA — Two radio talk show hosts held a “Fire Dreier’ rally Thursday, criticizing a local Republican Congressman for doing nothing to keep illegal immigrants from coming into the United States.

KFI AM-640 listeners came to the rally next to the office of Rep. David Dreier on Route 66 armed with protest signs and bullhorns. Many honked their horns in support of the rally, which lasted from 3 to 7 p.m. Police said several hundred people came and went during the rally.

In the first of several events aimed at boosting support for the cause, the radio station decorated a vacant lot near Dreier’s office to look mildly similar to the set of CBS’ reality show “Survivor,” as a “tribal savage” in a grass skirt and bone necklaces danced to pounding drums.

Mocking a bowling party Dreier hosted before the start of the Republican National Convention last month, the show taped Dreier’s face to a number of plastic bowling pins, then lined them up for demonstrators to knock down.

Dreier was not in his office during the demonstration and staffers declined requests from some demonstrators to face the crowd.

Earlier in the day, Dreier, 52, told the Claremont Kiwanis Club he was going to introduce legislation establishing a national identification card and a guest-worker program.

Dreier’s opponent, Democrat Cynthia Matthews, said the 24-year veteran has failed to keep illegal immigrants from crossing into the United States and costing taxpayers billions of dollars.

Talk-radio hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou held a contest and made Dreier the GOP’s “sacrificial lamb.” They are encouraging people not to vote for him in November. They say illegal immigrants are wreaking havoc on the state’s economy by cluttering freeways, prisons, hospitals and schools.

Dreier, chair of the powerful House Rules Committee, did not return calls seeking comment about the rally.

His district director, Mark Harmsen, said hundreds of angry Dreier supporters called the office and said they wanted to go to the rally, but were discouraged from attending.

“We wanted to avoid any confrontations,” Harmsen said.

Harmsen said Kobylt and Chiampou didn’t put one Republican on the air who said they lived in the 26th District and who said they would not vote for Dreier.

However, Chris Macaulay, 51, of La Verne, said he has voted for Dreier since 1980, but that he’s fed up with the lawmaker saying one thing, but voting for another.

“He says he is for protecting the border and stopping illegal immigration, but his actions don’t back up his words. The matricular consular he voted for the other day is a security problem,” said Macaulay, a self-employed real estate agent. “It opens the door to get the most secure documents in our country like a driver,s license.”

Earlier in the day, Dreier said he was going to introduce legislation next week establishing a counterfeit-proof, biometric, photo-embedded national identification card required for anyone looking for a new job.

“It’s not just for immigrants it’s for everyone. Immigrants should not be singled out,” Dreier said.