More than 200 people rallied across the street from the White House yesterday to protest the immigration enforcement policies of the Bush administration and Congress, vowing to take their message nationwide and secure the U.S. borders themselves.
“We will not compromise and we will not go away,” said Chris Simcox, a Tombstone, Ariz., newspaper publisher and founder of Civil Homeland Defense Corps in Arizona who helped organize the “Minuteman Project,” a border vigil by hundreds of volunteers that shut down a 20-mile stretch of the Arizona-Mexico border to illegal aliens.
Hailed as “Hold Their Feet to the Fire 2005,” the campaign is aimed at demonstrating nationwide opposition to the immigration enforcement policies of Congress and the White House, President Bush’s guest worker program and the issuance of drivers’ licenses to illegal aliens. It also seeks a crackdown on employers who hire illegals, and calls for the resumption of interior sweeps by the Border Patrol.
Yesterday, as the Lafayette Park crowd raised placards and chanted “Thank you, Minutemen,” Mr. Simcox reported that 15,000 new volunteers are ready to begin civilian patrols in October of the U.S.-Mexico border from California to Texas, with others being set for limited vigils in Michigan, Idaho and Vermont.