Targeting law enforcement for “lobbying” and influence has long been a goal of the Tanton Network and its various leadership. For example, Jessica Vaughan, Director of Policy Studies at the Tanton Network’s pseudo think-tank, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), recently spoke on a panel regarding ICE’s Secure Communities program at the National Sheriffs’ Association annual conference in Nashville, TN.
Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hatewatch blog uncovered some alarming activity by controversial anti-immigrant group FAIR, a group fully connected to CIS, claiming it is working together with a federal agency to help train law enforcement officers. It was even so bold as to include what is apparently a forged endorsement from said agency of FAIR and it’s so-called “border school.” SPLC’s blog, which follows, tells the full story:
The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), the anti-immigrant hate group behind draconian immigration enforcement laws in Arizona, Alabama and elsewhere, appears to have misled law enforcement officers about a training program it’s sponsoring in Texas, Hatewatch has learned.
In an invitation E-mailed to an unknown number of sheriffs earlier this month, FAIR wrote that its “border school” had been approved by the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program (HIDTA), a program of the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) that facilitates cooperation among local, state and federal law enforcement officials. A flier distributed by FAIR bears HIDTA’s official logo, and FAIR notes in the invitation that travel and lodging costs associated with the Sept. 21-22 event in El Paso “may be covered by your agency’s HIDTA funding.”
But a spokesperson for the ONDCP says that no approval has been granted.
“In no way is the ‘border school’ sanctioned, co-hosted, or endorsed by the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program,” Rafael Lemaitre, ONDCP’s associate director for public affairs, told Hatewatch.
“Any use of the program’s logo to imply support for this conference is unacceptable, and the local HIDTA director has asked for this to be corrected as soon as possible,” Lemaitre said. “Additionally, at no time have any HIDTA training funds been requested or been approved for use in association with this conference.”
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