August 29, 2007

Rev. Rivera Debates House Rep. Randy Terrill on Lou Dobbs Show

Terrill Confidently Announces Intention to Create Strongest Law in America

New York, NY- Today, CNN’s Lou Dobbs television show featured a spirited debate between Rep. Randy Terrill (R-OK) sponsor of Oklahoma’s Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act of 2007 and the Reverend Miguel Rivera, President of the National Coalition of Latino (CONLAMIC) about efforts to fight this anti-immigrant policy in the state of Oklahoma and other similar policies around the nation.

CNN’s report this afternoon called “Broken Borders” spoke about the states of New Jersey, Virginia, and Oklahoma. States that CONLAMIC has offensively mobilized national, state and local leaders against anti-immigration legislation that has been implemented by certain local policymakers who have recklessly taken the immigration problem on themselves after Congress failed to develop a solution.

CONLAMIC’s President, Rev. Miguel Rivera said, “We are a conservative organization that represents a conservative Christian constituency. We believe the American borders must be strengthened and secured, but our nation cannot possibly deport 12 million undocumented people and this issue must be addressed.”

Rep. Randy Terrill, with an overly confident smile said “We intend to create the toughest immigration law in the nation that will cut access to jobs and benefits to illegal aliens and that will allow local officials to ask people to prove their legal residency. If those people are not illegal – they have nothing to worry about.”

Rev. Rivera steadfastly opposed him by pinpointing the fact that Rep. Terrill authored a law that opens the door for racial profiling and other injustices because he wants to score points with voters in Oklahoma. Terrill said that “it’s complete nonsense”, however had no definitive answer to current reports of the problem nor to the reporters prompting that he could “write the legislation in a way to avoid racial profiling and other injustices” except to say “yes I can do that”.

Rev. Rivera and the National Coalition of Latino Clergy intend to hold Rep. Terrill accountable for just that and stated CONLAMIC’s intention to file a lawsuit against the state for its careless policy.

“Clearly, this young state legislator intends to make a name for himself in creating a law that could be used as a model for other states. The current legislation is not a good model – if it were, we would be supportive. As an elected official he has the responsibility to the American people and his constituents to protect ALL citizens, including people of color. He needs to go back to the drawing board and get this right the first time,” stated Rev. Rivera.

CONLAMIC Legal Defense Fund plans to take legal action in response to Oklahoma’s immigration policy.

CNN’s Lou Dobbs show posted a viewer’s question during today’s show that asking, “Why do Christians and Churches support breaking the law? They should follow the Bible, which says to follow the law.”

The response to this is simple. Faith leaders have the responsibility to bring the TRUTH and the Bible supports this. This issue affects the civil rights of Americans, immigrants and even the hardworking undocumented people who live in this country. Faith leaders feel the responsibility to bring the truth to Americans regardless of whether or not it’s popular opinion.

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