Projects of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform - CAIRCO

Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform (CAIRCO) had undertaken a number of special projects over the years in order to increase public awareness of the immigration crisis in the United States.

Colorado Legislature

Since Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform was formed, CAIRCO has monitored the Colorado Legislature regarding immigration-related legislation. CAIRCO has testified in numerous Colorado House and Senate committees on pending immigration legislation. We were extensively involved with the 2003 Colorado Secure and Verifiable Identity Document Act (HB-1224), and 2006 Colorado immigration legislation passed as a direct consequence of the Defend Colorado Now initiative.

Over the years, CAIRCO has had two registered lobbysts (Elbel, Weekes) who were involved at the legislative level. In addition, former directors Bill Herron and Mike McGarry, and numerous other volunteers and activists have participated in the legislative process.

Defend Colorado Now ballot initiative (2006)

Although not part of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform, Defend Colorado Now (DCN) worked to advance and support immigration reform ballot measures in Colorado. DCN supported an immigration reform initiative in 2006 that ultimately led to legislation being passed in a special legislative session

The 2006 Defend Colorado Now citizens' petition process was hugely successful. When it was apparent that the initiative would be placed on the ballot, the Colorado Supreme Court, in a blatant act of judicial political activism, blocked the initiative.

On June 12, 2006, the Colorado Supreme Court issued a ruling on the DCN initiative saying in effect that they did not want Coloradans to vote on the initiative in November. The Court, in a 4-2 ruling, stated that the initiative was not a single subject.

Petitions for rehearing were filed by Defend Colorado Now and by the Colorado Attorney General under the direction of Governor Bill Owens. On June 26, 2006, the Colorado Supreme Court issued a second blow to the rights of the People of Colorado to decide via the initiative process how their tax dollars will be spent. The Court denied the petitions for rehearing. (See the full updated ruling).

In this ruling, the Court tried to modify its embarrassingly inadequate legal reasoning by substituting other inadequate and embarrassingly political reasoning. It is clear to everyone - from the Governor of Colorado to the person on the street - that black robes can not conceal a political agenda.

On June 13, 2006, Governor Bill Owens held a press conference where he derided the Supreme Court for their arbitrary and unfair ruling, and called upon the Colorado Attorney General to support Defend Colorado Now in calling for a rehearing by the Court. In addition, Governor Owens stated that if the court did not consider the motion in a timely manner, he would call for an emergency legislative session in order to vote on referring the initiative to the voters. (There are two ways to get an initiative on the ballot: via the petition process and by the legislature voting to place the measure on the ballot).

On June 29, 2006, Governor Owens called a special legislative session to convene on July 6, 2006. 

Billboard Colorado (2006)

Billboard Colorado third billboard

Billboard Colorado was a project that strategically placed billboard in the metro Denver area. The project is not currently active, but you can view the archived Billboard Colorado website. Mike McGarry was instrumental in coordinating this project.

The history of Billboard Colorado

Wouldn't it make you absolutely crazy if you were to find out the U.S. government spends $10,000,000,000 a year from the federal budget to make life comfortable for border-crashing illegal aliens, (including providing on-demand "emergency" health care complete with translators), but it just cannot seem to find the necessary funds to support the health care needs of all of our eligible military veterans? Well, get ready to let out a primal scream and be carted off to a padded cell, because Uncle (wham-bam, thank-you-mam) Sam is doing exactly that.

(Here's another outrage that may cause you become manic: The Military Selective Service Act requires all males 18 to 25-years-old residing in this country, including illegal aliens, to register with the Selective Service. Failure to register could bring penalties as great as $250,000 and/or five years in prison. In 2000, Gil Coronado, the-then Director of Selective Service under the Clinton administration, reported that at least 20 U.S. citizens over the previous several years had been prosecuted for violating that law. But, curiously, he reported no illegal aliens had been prosecuted. When he was asked to explain this glaring disparity--since millions, perhaps the majority, of illegal aliens are within the required registration age range--the director dismissed the question as not important.)

Bob Park, of Prescott, AZ, is a military veteran. He also served with the U.S. Border Patrol, and was he was a criminal investigator with the INS. As an immigration activist, Bob participated last year in the Minuteman Project in Arizona, where he noticed that many of his fellow participants were military veterans, inspiring Bob to form Veterans for Secure Borders. Bob, too, became incensed over government's crass treatment of its veterans, while it was laying out the red carpet for illegals. So Bob, an unassuming man, but with a professional agitator's relish and history for the provocative, erected a billboard in New Mexico, which you may see on Bob's website. (Billboard Colorado is using that billboard for its first prototype.)

Bob's billboard, along with the information about how the U.S. government is cooing over and wooing illegals while screwing veterans, came to the attention of Denver radio talk-show host, Peter Boyles, who understandably and temporarily went ballistic, recovered, and who then made an on-air wish to launch a billboard project in the Denver area that honored Bob's central theme. The response in public support for the project was immediate and overwhelming.

Thus was born Billboard Colorado, an educational effort to publicly expose a travesty of travesties, and to help make right a profoundly disturbing wrong.

News release - Billboard Colorado

August 2, 2006

Contacts: Julian West
Mike McGarry

Billboard calls for health care for vets, deportation for illegals - Project donates $2,400 to veterans’ charity

August 2, 2006 (Denver, CO) - Billboard Colorado, the group that caused a stir when it unveiled two immigration-related billboards in Denver on June 1, announced today the unveiling of a third billboard. The latest billboard, placed at 2150 South Colorado Blvd, in the University Hills area, shows a partial image of an America flag, with scripting that reads, “Attention U.S. Senate: Health Care for veterans! Amnesty for Illegal aliens!” with the word “amnesty” lined out and replaced with “Deportation.”

Julian West, a spokesman for Billboard Colorado, said the intention of the billboard was to “continue to expose travesty that the U.S. government spends a net $10 billion to make life comfortable for illegal aliens but it just cannot seem to find the necessary funds to support the health care needs of eligible American military veterans.”

Billboard Colorado also announced it is donating $2,400 to the veterans’ charity, The Retired Enlisted Association (TREA). TREA’s mission is to enhance the quality of life for uniformed services enlisted personnel, their families and survivors-including retirees, active duty, Reserves, and National Guard.

Colorado Billboard photos

Bobby Marchetti and the Celebration Band rallies the crowd at the billboard unveiling on June 1, 2006.
Peter Boyles broadcasts live from the unveiling (listen to Peter's show on KNUS 710 AM, 6-9 am with an additional hour online only, 9-10 am).
The unveiling begins. Talk show host, Peter Boyles, interviewing Congressman Tom Tancredo (seated); Billboard Colorado steering committee member, Mike McGarry (standing, right) looking on.
The Great Unveiling of the first billboard!
Bob Park, founder of Veterans For Secure Borders - an Arizona-based billboard project that was the inspiration for Billboard Colorado.
Peter Boyles interviews Waldo Benavidez of the Defend Colorado Now initiative.
Peter Boyles interviews Jim Gilchrist of the Minuteman Project
Billboard Colorado steering committee member, Mike McGarry, rocks the crowd at the unveiling.

The second billboard.

The third billboard.


Protest bogus matricula consular cards at Colorado Springs Sand Creek library (2006)

On February 11, 2006, the Consulate General of Mexico, held a "Mobile Consulate" event to issue its matricula consular ID card to Mexican nationals from the properties of the Sand Creek branch of the Pikes Peak Public Library, 1821 South Academy Blvd., Colorado Springs. CAIR, along with members of the Colorado Minutemen, protested at the Sand Creek Library branch.

In 2003, the Colorado State Legislature enacted HB-1124, the Colorado Secure and Verifiable Identity Document Act. Governor Owens signed that bill into law. The Act bans the use of the Consular ID, known as the matricula consular, and any IDs issued by other foreign government that are not "secure and verifiable” by standards set by the United States government. The Act applies to all of Colorado’s political subdivisions. While some practical, limited exceptions were expressed in the Act, it was the legislative intent of the Act that in most all matters the card was not to be accepted as valid identification.

The state legislature took the action it did in no small part because the Justice Department and the FBI had warned against accepting of the ID card as valid ID. Indeed, in 2003 an FBI assistant director of intelligence testified before a U.S. congressional committee that “…the [Consular ID] issued by the Mexican government is not a reliable form of identification, due to the nonexistence of any means of verifying the true identity of the card holder.”

Among the criminal uses the FBI expressed concern about were human smuggling and terrorist access. Only Mexican nationals residing illegally in the U.S. have a need for the card. According to the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (BICE), all foreign nationals residing legally in the U.S. possess U.S. government-issued documents (visas, “green cards” etc).

You should also know that the Mexican government, through many of its some 46 consular office in the U.S., has been involving itself in matters that are the exclusive prerogative of the citizens of the Untied states, often, we believe, in violation of Geneva Conventions which bar foreign consular offices from involvement in the domestic affairs of their host countries.

There is no law against the Mexican government issuing its bogus ID card in Colorado. It can do so from private property. However, using the taxpayers’ facilities to issue the card is an outrage. 

Protesters across from the Sand Creek Library.
Protesters across from the Sand Creek Library.
Meddling Mexican Consulate officials issuing Micky Mouse Matricula cards to foreign nationals.
Hundreds of illegal aliens lined up for Matricula ID cards.
Are they all illegal aliens? Sure. Legal immigrants have legitimate US government-issued documentation such as green cards.
Someone said the person standing on the right is an official from the Mexican Consulate.
Some of the prosters across the street from the library.
This is an copy of an actual "secure" matricula ID issued to D.A. King of The Dustin Inman Society.


Denver's El Centro hiring hall for illegal aliens (2005-2006)

Burrito Breakfast with Mayor Hickenlooper

On December 2, 2005, Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper was the keynote speaker at a fundraiser burrito breakfast for El Centro Humanitario para los Trabajadores - Denver's hiring hall for illegal aliens. The event was to promote and fundraiser for El Centro's new Capital Campaign to improve "home away from home" for "immigrant day laborers".

The event was held at the Centro San Juan Diego Historic Site, 2830 Lawrence Street near downtown Denver. On the outside of the building is a plaque dated October 17, 2005 thanking Mayor John Hickenlooper and the City and County of Denver for providing funding for exterior renovation.

El Centro was founded in 2002 and "is Denver's first day laborer organization that provides day laborers with a safe and dignified gathering place for them to seek employment and education."

Surprisingly, the Mayor found himself confronted by Colorado Minutemen and CAIRCO activists who questioned him on Denver's sanctuary city policy for illegal aliens. CAIRCO's director asked the Mayor point-blank if he would issue an executive order mandating that he update the Denver Police Manual to require full cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Predictably, the Mayor told CAIR's director and spokesperson that "there is no sanctuary policy in Denver." We beg to differ. Indeed, this prevarication has been exposed by Congressman Tancredo on CNN's Lou Dobbs news show:

Christine Romans: "We've heard from the Denver mayor's office as well that they do routinely turn over leads on trafficking to Immigration and Customs officials...."

Tom Tancredo: "At the very site that was identified in the Brian Mass report, at that restaurant, a policeman had been watching it for a long time - it was sort of on his beat... This policeman observed this going on, these vans pulling up... he reported this to ICE himself. Guess what happened to him? He got reprimanded by his superiors in the Denver Police Department. So don't let Denver give you this bunk."

During discussions, the Mayor snuck out the back door.

(Also see CAIRCO's press conference and protest on the sanctuary city of Denver.)

Mayor Hickenlooper speaks at the burrito breakfast.
Mayor Hickenlooper (on the left) is questioned on Denver's sanctuary city policy for illegal aliens by CAIRCO's spokesperson Mike McGarry (on the right).
The Mayor answers pointed questions from CAIRCO's Mike McGarry.
Illegal aliens ("day laborers") are picked up at the rear of the building. There is a lot of activity here during early morning hours.
This person, driving a car with Florida plates, just picked up four "day laborers".
Just a few blocks from downtown Denver. The Platte River runs through Denver a little less than a mile north of the illegal alien hiring hall. Although Denver is well known for its bike paths and walkways, the path along the Platte in this area is overwhelmed with transients and illegal aliens.
Illegal aliens wait in the hall until they are picked up for a day's work.
Legal problems? We heard that the University of Denver has staffed legal students here (at UD expense) in order to provide free legal advice.
Just a hiring hall for illegal aliens? They seem to be quite politically active.
Law books. Perportedly provided by the University of Denver.
Across the street from the illegal hiring hall is Limousine Express, Inc., with offices in Longmont, Colorado.
The "limousines" run from inside the Mexican border through our border states directly to Denver.
How convenient! Door to door transportation of illegal aliens to Denver's illegal alien hiring hall!


Protest of Denver's El Centro hiring hall for illegal aliens (2006)

Colorado Minuteman, CAIRCO, and over 40 other concerned citizen groups joined a 19 State National Day Labor Protest on January 7th 2006, to demonstrate against El Centro Humanitario located at 2260 California St. in Denver, Colorado.

El Centro Humanitario is a known illegal alien hiring hall open to the public and is reputed to be financially supported by Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper. El Centro also purportedly offers free legal advice among other services to Illegal Aliens through the support of Denver University law students. Mandating law students to break federal laws at taxpayer expense is an outrage and can not be tolerated in a law abiding state.

See pictures below.

Detect, detain, and deport illegal aliens

Detect, detain, and deport illegal aliens.


Colorado Minutemen protested across the street from Denver's illegal alien hiring hall.
Who are all of these people protesting in favor of illegal aliens?
Minutemen protest in favor of law enforcement.
This person was caught wearing a mask while writing down license plates. When someone began photographing him, he became confrontational, accosted the photographer, and grabbed the camera.
Now we find out who all these young, yuppie protesters are. They announced they were with the Friends' Service Committee - Quakers. Hmmmm - Mayor Hickenlooper is a Quaker, isn't he? And Mayor Hickenlooper supports the illegal hiring hall.

Press conference and protest of Denver sanctuary policy (2005)

On May 16, 2005, Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform held a press conference and protest at the Denver City and County Building. After the press conference, CAIRCO representatives hand delivered a letter to Denver Mayor Hickenlooper, demanding, not requesting, that Executive Order 116 sanctuary policy language be replaced with unequivocal language encouraging unfettered cooperation with federal immigration authorities in the identification and removal of illegal aliens. 

Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform (CAIRCO) said Denver's "sanctuary policy" is a de facto amnesty for illegal aliens, including known felons. At issue is language in Denver's police department operations manual which states, "Generally, officers will not detain, arrest, or take enforcement action against a person solely because he/she is suspected of being an undocumented immigrant." 

Under current federal immigration law, an alien who is deported and then returns without authorization has committed a felony. CAIRCO's Fred Elbel and Mike McGarry said that the city's current policy prevents Denver's police officers from notifying immigration authorities about the presence in Denver of such an alien, even when those police officers have knowledge that alien had been deported. "This is nothing but an amnesty for foreign criminals while putting the safety and welfare of citizens at risk, and it must stop now," Elbel said.

(Also see CAIRCO's questioning of Mayor Hickenlooper on Denver's sanctuary city policy at a burrito breakfast fundraiser for the El Centro illegal alien hiring hall.)

There was abundant press coverage.

CAIRCO's Western Slope spokesperson and co-organizer of the protest and press conference, Mike McGary.
CAIRCO's Mike McGarry introduced speakers.
Colorado (state) Representative Dave Schultheis (R- El Paso) spoke about the importance of controlling illegal immigration.
Bill Herron spoke on the status of Defend Colorado Now - an upcoming citizens initiative to limit state non-emergency services to those illegally in Colorado.
Bob Copley spoke of his experiences protecting our border as a Minuteman Project volunteer.
Colorado (state) Representative Dave Schultheis (R- El Paso) spoke about the importance of controlling illegal immigration.
CAIRCO director Fred Elbel read statements from former Colorado Governor Richard D. Lamm and Tom Tancredo.


The Colorado Illegal-Immigration Crisis: Colorado Solutions (2005)

Colorado Alliance News, in cooperation with the Defend Colorado Now Initiative and the Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform, presented a rousing forum on Saturday afternoon, October 22, 2005, at the University of Denver's Boettcher Hall, entitled: The Colorado Illegal-Immigration Crisis: Colorado Solutions.

The forum was by every measure a great success, exceeding the expectations of its organizers. The 376 seating capacity of Boettcher Hall was exhausted, causing with some late-comers to be turned away by campus safety officers.

A group outside the hall protested against the theme of the forum. Forum organizers extended and opportunity to the protesting group's spokesperson, Gabrella Flores, of the American Friends Service Committee, to address the forum.

The forum focused on the negative impacts of illegal immigration. It featured several experts on illegal immigration, along with others who recounted their personal, often moving, experiences as victims of illegal immigration.

Enthusiastic support for the speakers was shown by almost continuous sustained applause. Congressman Tom Tancredo spoke in part about his concern of the disturbing trend of non-assimilation and retention of foreign allegiances, a concern shared by forum attendees, as demonstrated by their standing ovation.

The forum then focused on specific projects activists can work on:

  • Ending sanctuary cities in Colorado,
  • Exposing felonious employers of illegals and enforcement of U.S. immigration laws against hiring illegal aliens,
  • The Defend Colorado Now initiative to deny non-emergency services to illegal aliens. In early 2006, Defend Colorado Now begin collecting voter-registered signatures to qualify for the November 2006 election ballot.

The originally planned two-and-one-half-hour program, came to a close at three-hours, with Mike McGarry and Fred Elbel awarding a Proclamation of Excellence to Dr. William and Jan Herron for their tireless work on immigration reform in Colorado.

The event was videotaped for future reference. CAIRCO wishes to thank everyone who volunteered to help make the event a success. Thanks to Michael for audio services.

Speakers at the event

Waldo Benavidez, Director, Auroria Community Center, on the impact of massive illegal immigration on low-income communities.
Glen Colton and CAIRCO's Fort Collins affiliates on defeating a Fort Collins sanctuary city proposal.
Bob Copley: on the Minuteman Project and the impact of cheap foreign labor on American workers.
Rep. Bill Crane: Colorado state legislator and Minuteman participant, and Colorado impact.
Angela Dreiling: victim of Social Security card fraud.
Evelyn Elstrom: former school teacher, on the impact of forced multilingualism on our educational system.
Gabriella Flora, opening speaker, speaking for the position of open borders.
Terry Graham: victim of attack by an illegal alien at a First Data / Western Union open borders forum, speaking on her petitions asking the Governor to declare a state of emergency.
Juan Herrera and son Juan Herrera: American workers affected by illegal immigration.
Dr. William and Jan Herron: Defend Colorado Now initiative.
Greg Johnson: electrician effected by illegal immigration.
Kathy Redmond: opposing hidden costs of illegal immigration in referenda C and D opponent; personal experiences with attack and car theft by an illegal alien.
Jim Spence: former INS Senior Special Agent on the need to enforce our laws and deport illegal aliens.
Congressman Tom Tancredo: Chairman, the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus.
Carol, John and Julius Vizzi family: mother of son killed by illegal alien in traffic accident; Julius Vizzi on home mortgages to illegal aliens, John Vizzi on his project to focus on employers of illegal aliens.
Rep. Jim Welker: Colorado state legislator and Minuteman participant, on Colorado impact.
Frosty Wooldridge: author (Immigration's Unarmed Invasion), lecturer; speaking on our immigration crisis, including fiscal impact, hospital closures, and impact on education.
Mike McGarry: project organizer, CAIRCO spokesperson, and director of Colorado Alliance News.
Fred Elbel, CAIRCO director.

Responsibility of Sovereign Americans

Estimates of the number of illegal aliens currently residing in the U.S. range from 10 to 20 million. Time magazine estimates that three-million illegal immigrants from all over the world now enter the U.S. annually (with an conservatively estimated 250,000 currently residing in Colorado), far outnumbering the 1.2 million legal immigrants entering the country annually. The U.S. admits more legal immigrants than all of the countries of the world admit, combined. Massive illegal immigration is an insult to America's generous immigration policy.

Polls show that 70-80 percent of the Americans, across racial, ethnic and class lines, want illegal immigration halted. But the U.S. government continues to fail in its First Obligation: the protection of its citizens. Instead, the President and members of the Congress are again foolishly offering as the solution to illegal immigration the tried-and-failed amnesty approach. Since the "one-time-only" massively fraudulent 1986 amnesty, we have had six additional amnesties, proving that amnesties only encourage more illegal immigration.

The proponents of the several amnesties now before the Congress falsely claim that there are only two alternatives to illegal immigration: mass deportation-an impossible concept-and yet another amnesty (number eight), referred to under several euphemistic terms such as "guest worker programs," "regularization," "earned legalization," etc. There is a third alternative, however: attrition.

Just as a stool needs four legs to support it, attrition provides a four-legged solution to illegal immigration. Those legs are: 1) increased border enforcement, 2) increased interior enforcement, 3) sanctions against felonious employers of illegal immigrants, and 4) through the ballot-initiative process, ending government-sponsored benefits and entitlements for illegal immigrants. As Gov. Lamm has noted, attrition will create self-deportation and help bring illegal immigration to manageable levels.

Because of the ongoing abdication on the part of the President, the Congress, the Gov. of Colorado and the state legislature, the responsibility for dealing with illegal immigration has now, by default, shifted to We the People.

First Data Immigration Reform panel in Denver (2004)

First Data Corporation, based in the Denver area, hosted a public "immigration reform" forum in Denver on July 22, 2004. This was the fourth such event held in major cities across the country. Although superficially billed as an "immigration reform" panel, the events appear to be targeted marketing events to sell banking and wire transfer services the Hispanic and illegal alien community and to promote open borders legislation.

First Data prevented anyone but open-borders fanatics from formally participating on the forum. Several immigration-reduction advocates and experts contacted First Data and asked to be included on the forum's panel, but they were coldly refused. This so-called "immigration reform" panel was limited exclusively to the usual open-borders immigration radicals and extremists. Fred Elbel, director of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform stated that inhis opinion, "It was nothing but a racist, open-borders sham, conducted in the name of corporate greed." (See the article Remittances - a Massive Transfer of Wealth, by Fred Elbel in the Spring, 2012 Social Contract.)

Finally, honest contempt! As a concerned citizen wrote to the Denver post: "Finally, a corporate leader has come out in the open with his contempt for our nation and its immigration laws. With chief executives such as Charlie Fote and corporations such as First Data Corp. promoting and abetting illegal immigration, we will not have a cohesive nation for long."

In the audience, an American woman whose lineage dated back to the Pilgrims was brutally beaten by a woman who proclaimed in a Spanish accent, “You should leave! This is for us.” Mike McGarry, of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform, was told to “Go back to Ireland.” Nevertheless, after vociferously complaining about the forum’s obvious anti-immigration enforcement bias, he was given an impromptu seat on the panel. Not that it changed First Data’s business model.

The event proceeded with numerous comments from the audience and involved a brutal attack on a citizen by an open borders proponent. Audio of the public event is available upon request. At the end of the attack, about 30 people lined up to ask questions of the panelists. Three questions were allowed, but when the moderator determined that these were not open borders-friendly questions, the forum was shut down and no further questions were allowed.

First Data Corporation is the world's largest provider of money transfers. It's estimated that $30 billion annually in remittances are transferred to foreign countries by their nationals, including illegal aliens, living and working in the US. First Data recently made news when it announced it had formed a political action committee to support political candidates whose immigration positions are non-restrictive, and directly oppose immigration reform candidate Tom Tancredo. The company's Colorado offices are in U.S. congressman Tom Tancredo's district, and First Data's chief executive Charlie Fote was openly angry that the Republican congressman suggested the remittances be taxed.

In March, 2004, Charles Fote, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Colorado's First Data Corporation, established the First Data Empowerment Fund. The first three Empowerment advisory board members are Raul Yzaguirre, president, National Council of La Raza; Salvador Gomez, chairman, Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; and Robert de Posada, president, Latino Coalition.

It appears that under the guise of "immigration reform" Fote and First Data are conspiring with open-borders advocates to break up America, while First Data reaps the profits.

In March, at the National Press Club in Washington D.C., Fote announced that First Data would establish a: "... $10 million commitment to the communities we serve here and abroad. By creating the First Data Empowerment Fund, we are announcing our intention to act as a long-term and active participant in the dialogue relating to critical issues such as immigration reform and economic empowerment."

Immigration reducationists actually get to speak!

Mike McGarry, of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform asked from the audience: "Why don't you let the other side speak?" Roberto Ramirez graciously offered Mike his seat for 5 minutes. But after hearing what Mike had to say, he changed his mind. Mike was cut off after two minutes, out of an hour and a half panel discussion. (Time from just after the presentation began: 50:00:00)
Mike McGarry: "I think this panel is racially and ethnically cleansed, it's one side of the issue... and does not represent the immigration perspective of most Americans!" (50:00:00)
Mike McGarry: "This panel is composed along ethnic, racial and class lines and this presentation is a sham."

First Data panelists (2004)

The audience was mostly Hispanic. The high school where the event was held is predominantly Hispanic. One European-American woman was told to her face: "You should leave. This is for us." Mike McGarry, of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform, was told "Go back to Ireland."
Executive Row. Presumably First Data executives. The empty seat in front was taken by Charlie Fote.
Moderator: Former Congressman Esteban E. Torres on the left; First Data's Charlie Fote at the podium.
As the panelists were introduced, someone in the audience asked "Aren't you going to say the Pledge of Allegiance?" The moderator stuttered and hesitantly agreed.
Introducing the panelists, from left to right: Raul Hinojosa, Lisa Duran, Robert de Posada, Roberto Ramirez, Thomas A. Saenz, Juan Salgado.
First Data's Charlie Fote at the podium.
Thomas A. Saenz: "And we have found such laws - all racial laws - especially [California's] Proposition 187... we challenged that and found it was unconstitutional. (shouting against audience objections) I will not have you or anyone else tear up the Constitution of the United States!"

The panelists

"Immigration: What Reform Will Bring to Our Nation". Panelists include:

Juan Salgado, President of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and Executive Director of the Instituto del Progreso Latino.

Lisa Duran, director of Rights for All People, Denver.

Robert de Posada, Executive Director, The Latino Coalition.

Raúl Hinojosa, Director of Research, North American Integration and Development Center, University of California in Los Angeles.

Roberto Ramírez, Founder, The Jesús Guadalupe Foundation.

Thomas A. Sáenz, Vice President of Litigation, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Moderator: former Congressman Esteban Torres.

At the end of the forum, a reception with traditional Mexican food was offered by First Data to the community.


Ricardo ?, Executive Director of the Colorado Civil Rights Coalition, in introductory speech: The purpose of this session tonight is to talk about immigration reform and anybody that is beginning to sound like a heckler will be asked to leave. (Announcement in English and Spanish: there are headsets that have the announcements translated into English and Spanish).

First Data speaker Fred Neihouse, in introductory speech: "As a company that is headquartered in Colorado, we believe that this is one of our top priorities - to reform the immigration laws of this country."

Salvador Gomez, president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, in introductory speech: "We are especially fortunate to have Charlie Foote leading the charge on immigration reform."

First Data Chief Executive Charlie Fote: "Tonight this panel will discuss immigration reform. Over the past year, this issue has become one of the top issues in our company and in the country. First Data and Western Union are calling upon all our leaders in the public and private sectors to get a vigorous, bipartisan debate on immigration reform that achieves three things: First, it fully realizes America's democratic values. Secondly, it recognizes the interdependence of U.S. and foreign economies. And third, it ensures that we do this in a mode that enforces our national security." (Time from just after presentation began: 7:52)

Raul Hinojosa: "There are 10 million illegal aliens in this country who need to come out... in a way that recognizes their incredible contribution to the economy... [We need] The creation of a new system where we are actually bringing in the amount of workers we need into the future... - all workers that come into this country come here on a level playing field with full rights... as they come into the country, they would have total economic rights, including access to a bank and bank accounts. (22:25)

Lisa Duran: "In short, our current policy is based on our national security framework, defined solely through fear, that defines immigration as an enforcement problem of people overstaying visas or crossing the border without permission... immigration policy that ceded to an enforcement approach that results in the criminalization of fundamentally human activities such as working, driving a car and moving to keep families together. The enforcement of American immigration policy is also tied to racist and nativist sentiments. [referring to Colorado's Matricula Consular ban]... the words immigrant and illegal, a complete and fundamental misnomer." (30:00)

Roberto de Posada: "The system is broken itself, we are not protecting U.S. workers or Latino workers... What we need to focus on is to make sure that our enforcement mechanisms are not looking at people who are crossing the border to find a job and to focus our attention on criminals, smugglers, drug runners... We really need to focus on what is good for the country." (39.20)

Roberto Ramirez: "I was undocumented for 13 years... my mother brought us here - all nine children... I have my own business... and my people are honest workers... just an opportunity, that's all we need... and the business sector has to be involved." (44:05)

Thomas A. Saenz: "And we have found such laws - all racial laws - especially [California's] Proposition 187... we challenged that and found it was unconstitutional. (shouting against audience objections) I will not have you or anyone else tear up the Constitution of the United States!" (55:47)
We need to address the presence of large numbers of people who have people who... live in the shadows and do not share the rights of others. We need to have a legalization program to reflect our values, including the centrality of family unification... We need to have national enforcement priorities for immigration systems. Currently in California, thousands and thousands of people live in fear because of widespread Border Patrol sweeps. I believe this kind of enforcement activity is not consistent with our values... I believe it is critical that comprehensive immigration reform includes a national principle of non-discrimination against people on the basis of immigration status." (59:43)

Juan Saldago, in response to a question from the audience to please define illegal alien: "I was taught that this is God's land and no one is illegal on God's land." (1:13:00)

Mike McGarry of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform (allowed to speak for two minutes, 50 minutes into the event): "I think this panel is racially and ethnically cleansed, it's one side of the issue... and does not represent the immigration perspective of most Americans! This panel is composed along ethnic, racial and class lines and this presentation is a sham." (

The brutal attack at the First Data event (2004)


Members of the audience pull a woman off of a blonde woman who was attacked and is lying on the floor. (Time from just after when the presentation began: 56:28) (Neither the attacker or woman who was attacked were members of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform).
A Rocky Mountain News article reported: "Julissa Molina, 31, who teaches Hispanics about hepatitis prevention for a local nonprofit organization, allegedly got up and began hitting another woman, Denver police said." (Background info).

Denver police doing their job. (57:00)
This photo was reproduced in the Forbes Magazine article "On the backs of the poor".

Audience member and introductory speaker, after attacker was removed: "Take her out, she's inciting a riot!" (57:13)
Response by Denver Police officer: "This is a public forum, and we're not removing people for speaking. Period. [Referring to the person who was attacked]: She's not causing a riot... she's speaking. This was how the forum was set up, sir, everyone here has a right to speak." (56:27)

Former Senator Polly Baca and (presumed) attorney. Referring to the attacker, not the victim: "I will assure you that she will have adequate representation." (1:24:00)

"I think we all own a great debt of gratitude to Western Union and First Data." (1:27:00)

The following is an excerpt from a letter written by a woman who attended the debate:

I attended the Western Union Sham supposed Forum/Debate on Immigration reform at the North High School Thursday, July 22, 2004, as did one of your reporters. It was no debate.

It was also no forum. It was a complete "give them full amnesty and open the borders" discussion held by the Mexican Consulate in Denver, a UCLA Hispanic Professor, a Rep., two separate former illegal aliens (they said so) from CA and a couple of other Hispanic advocates, all Hispanic.

During the one-sided discussion a (white) lady was physically attacked - and hurt - by a Hispanic woman because the white woman was saying "this is illegal, what about the law?". Following the attack most of the audience cheered, with some saying "You deserve it". Then a Hispanic attorney got up after the Mexican woman was taken away by the police and assured the crowd that she would "take care of the lady and nothing would happen to her", at which point I asked her "You do mean the victim, right?" And she smirked and as she walked past me down the aisle I said, "You aren't referring to defending the attacker are you?" And she just stared at me while the rest of the crowd gave me hate looks and the she headed on out.

The entire give-them-amnesty panel said things like, "No one is illegal in Gods eyes", "I am from a family with 9 children and my mom brought me here illegally after my father was murdered in Mexico but I got my Green Card 13 years ago," and "Without 'immigrants' this country would financially fall apart."

No one from Denver, such as Former Gov. Lamm and Congressman Tancredo who oppose amnesty were invited on the panel. They cut off the audiences' questions at about 3-4 people, although 20 times that many were waiting in line to ask questions on the sham "open public forum" discussion. We have a serious problem here today.

First Data / Western Union Sued for Immigration Forum Assault

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - October 20, 2004

News release from

DENVER: A woman assaulted by a Mexican national at a Denver pro-immigration forum sponsored by First Data/Western Union filed a civil lawsuit today in Denver District Court. The lawsuit suit includes claims for ethnic intimidation, civil conspiracy, assault and battery, robbery, personal injury, and property damage against Colorado-based First Data Corporation, its subsidiary Western Union, the First Data/Western Union Foundation, the attacker and her former employer, Hep C Connection.

The plaintiff, Terry Graham, was challenging the forum's panelists from the audience when she was attacked and brutally assaulted by Julissa Molina-Soto, 32, an immigrants' rights activist.

Denver attorney Robert Corry, who is representing Graham, said, "No person in the United States of America should fear violent retaliation for exercising her First Amendment rights to speak out and participate in an open community forum. The sponsors of this forum, First Data Corporation and Western Union, had a duty and obligation to provide adequate security at the event, a responsibility they utterly failed to satisfy."

The forum was held on July 22 at Denver's North High School. The school was recently the focus of a national controversy for displaying the Mexican flag in its classrooms.

Denver police at the event arrested Molina-Soto and charged her with assault. She was released within minutes after the intervention of Mexican General Consul Juan Marcos Gutierrez and other Latino leaders, according to reports published in La Voz Nueva, a bilingual newspaper.

As paramedics attended to Graham following the assault, Polly Baca -- a Director of First Data/Western Union Foundation and head of Denver nonprofit LARASA ("The Race") -- and ACLU lawyer Adrienne Benavidez assured the largely Latino audience from the podium that Molina-Soto would have legal representation.

Molina-Soto is scheduled to appear on October 26 in Denver County Court on the assault charges. Jeff Joseph, head of the Colorado Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), is representing Molina-Soto in the criminal case.

Molina-Soto and her two children entered the U.S. nine years ago. A Mexican citizen, she reportedly has permanent resident alien status. She has held various jobs involving healthcare rights for legal and illegal Latino immigrants.

Baca's organization, LARASA, and Molina-Soto, who until recently was multicultural outreach coordinator for Denver's Hep C Connection, jointly ran a Latino outreach campaign on Hepatitis C in 2003. Benavidez, head of Denver's nonprofit Color of Justice, has long been a critic of the Denver Police Department's treatment of minorities. Benavidez headed Denver's Public Safety Review Commission, reviewing citizen complaints against police officers, for five years during which time the Police Protective Association accused her of bias. Former Police Chief Tom Sanchez protested the PSRC's "witch-hunt atmosphere" under her leadership. A vocal opponent of Denver's Columbus Day celebration, Benavidez also sits on the Board of Directors of Servicios de la Raza ("Services For The Race").

According to the First Data/Western Union Foundation website ( LARASA, Services de la Raza, and Hep C Connection have all received Foundation grants since 2001.

Molina-Soto's attorney, Jeff Joseph, debated Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo in February on the topic of immigration stating that "[The] enforcement policy of immigration is not in line with reality." Joseph also criticized President Bush's controversial immigrant amnesty proposal, saying it did not give incentives for illegal aliens to register and become legal US residents.

First Data Corporation has taken the lead in promoting massive immigration and immigrants' rights -- including illegal aliens -- since settling lawsuits charging that its subsidiary, Western Union, failed to disclose unreasonably high commissions it charged when wiring customers' money to Mexico.

In March, First Data/Western Union set up a $10 million "Empowerment Fund" to be used for Latino and pro-immigration causes. Raul Yzaguirre, president of the National Council of La Raza ("The Race"); Sal Gomez, Chairman the Denver Hispanic Chamber Gomez; and Robert de Posada, President of the Latino Coalition, were appointed by First Data to the Fund's Advisory Board. The Empowerment Fund is separate and in addition to charitable donations totaling about $5.5 million that First Data made as part of settlements of the class-action lawsuits.

Since March, First Data/Western Union has sponsored immigration panels across the nation. FIrst Data ignored complaints made prior to the Denver forum that participants did not represent both sides of the issue. Panelists at the Denver forum included Thomas Saenz of the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF); Lisa Duran of Derechos Por Todos (*"Rights For Everyone"); Juan Salgado, President of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights; Robert de Posada of The Latino Coalition; Raul Hinosa, UCLA's North American Integration and Development Center; and Roberto Ramirez, Founder of the Jesus Guadalupe Foundation. Some individuals had complained to First Data prior to the Denver panel that it was skewed and did not represent both sides of the issue.

First Data CEO Charles Fote announced in April that $800,000 of the Empowerment Fund would be used to create a Denver pilot program to support and increase the number of Latino business owners.

First Data remittances articles and more information

It's all about the money. Rest assured that First Data's "immigration reform" panels are an attempt to market Western Union's wire transfer services to the illegal alien community.

"Remittances - a Massive Transfer of Wealth", by Fred Elbel, the Social Contract, Spring, 2012

"First Data’s Polly Baca: Conquistadora Chicana-ry", by Terry Graham [alleged victim of attack at First Data's July 22 event], November 17, 2004

"On the backs of the poor" by Seth Lubove, Forbes Magazine, November 15, 2004

First Data has tried to counter the criticism by forming a $10 million "Empowerment Fund" for immigrants and staging immigration "reform" panels around the country. But the sessions have emboldened the company's critics and sparked a melee or two. At the panel in July in Denver, a woman was arrested after pummeling an anti-immigration heckler...

"Patriot Act cuts migrants' cash flow" by Patricio G. Bolona, Datona Beach News-Journal Online, November 07, 2004

Western Union, a check-cashing store that offers money-wiring services, was fined $8 million by the New York Banking Department in December 2002 for violating federal and state banking laws. The state charged Western Union was deficient in keeping records.

"First Data Western Union helps Mexican mothers" First Data press release

The First Data Western Union Foundation (FDWU) announced last week a new program to provide educational and financial assistance to Mexican mothers living alone in the state of Oaxaca.... FDWU will send $250,000 to Fundacion AYU, a Mexican nonprofit organization, to provide assistance to women living alone because their husbands are working in the United States....

"Attend First Data’s Meetings–Put Shoe On Other Fote!", by Joe Guzzardi, August 4, 2004, published on

"Western DisUnion: CEO Charlie Fote Betrays America", by Joe Guzzardi, July 28, 2004, published on

"First Data/Western Union and Latino Advocacy Organizations Call For Action on Immigration Reform", First Data press release, March 3, 2004.

"Sending Dollars to Latin America - Wiring money home - cheaply - Credit unions cut costs for immigrants [illegal aliens]", San Francisco Chronicle, July 24, 2001.

See this map of remittances to Latin America.

"Educator allegedly hits heckler", The Rocky Mountain News, July 24, 2004.

"Woman Arrested For Hitting Heckler At Immigration Forum - Forum Sponsored By First Data Corp.", Denver's 7 ABC News, The Associated Press, July 23, 2004.

"Heckling, fist fight mar forum on immigration", the Denver Post, July 23, 2004.

"First Data reports big profit jump", the Denver Post, June 21, 2004.

"Border skirmish - Rep. Tancredo's proposals for immigrant remittances draw First Data Corp. into public policy debate", the Denver Post, June 27, 2004.

Stop Amnesty (2004)

Stop Amnesty was a 2004 project of Colorado Alliance News - an Aspen, Colorado-based immigration news service, in cooperation with the Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform. The Stop Amnesty project chronicled the efforts by Tom Tancredo (R-CO) to have three immigration-related planks, including a plank that would condemn amnesties of any kind for illegal aliens, inserted into the Republican Party platform at the Republican National Convention in New York City (August 30 - September 2, 2004). The project included an August 30, 2006 New York City press conference with Tom Tancredo, and was solely organized and managed by Mike McGarry.

Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO) and others appeared at the news conference to discuss the congressman's efforts to have immigration planks, including a plank condemning amnesty for illegal aliens, inserted into the Republican Party's convention platform.

News Release

Aug. 23, 2004

Congressman wants to "stop amnesty" at GOP convention
Vows to "raise hell" if thwarted

(Aspen, Colorado) U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) will be working with delegates at the upcoming GOP convention in New York City to add an immigration plank to the party's platform condemning amnesty for illegal aliens, a direct challenge to president Bush's January-announced immigration proposal. Tancredo says the party's brass is trying to keep any controversial discussion on immigration from being considered. The congressman has scheduled a press conference for August 30, 2004, opening day of the four-day convention, where he will be discussing his efforts and "raising as much hell as possible" if he's thwarted.

Tancredo, chairman of the 70-member Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus, wants to "stop amnesty," a reference to the president's immigration proposal that would extend guest-worker status and eventual citizenship to the estimated 8-13 million illegal aliens residing in the U.S. While not a delegate himself, Tancredo has additional plank proposals that call for supplementing the Border Patrol with military troops and for getting state and local police to enforce immigration laws. A website on the congressman's convention plans and details of the press conference may be found at: www.StopAmnesty.US.

No stranger to head-butting with the White House over immigration, Tancredo was one told by the President's top political advisor, Karl Rove, "Don't ever darken the doorstep of this White House" when the Congressman reportedly criticized the President as an "open-borders" proponent. Commenting on his convention plans, Tancredo said, "There will be tremendous opposition to this. Going against the President's position, I mean, that is just anathema."

New York City press conference

Congressman Tom Tancredo and others appeared at an August 30, 2004 press conference in New York City sponsored by Colorado Alliance News to discuss the congressman's efforts to have immigration planks, including a plank condemning amnesty for illegal aliens, inserted into the Republican Party's convention platform.

U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo: Republican congressman who represented Colorado's Sixth District. Congressman Tancredo was chairman of the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus.
Michael Cutler: former INS Senior Special Agent. Mr. Cutler's 30-year INS career included criminal investigations of fraud, alien smuggling, drug trafficing and organized crime. Mr. Cutler has provide expert-witness testimony on immigration law enforcement at several congressional hearings, and he testified before the Presidential Commission on the Terrorist Attacks of September 11.
Bruce De Cell: member of the board 9-11 Families For A Secure America ( Mr. De Cell is a retired former NYPD officer who lost his 28-year-old son-in-law, Mark Petrocelli, in the 9-11 attacks on the World Trade Center.
Matthew Reindl: owner/operator a Great Neck, family-owned business, Stylecraft Interiors. Mr. Reindl has given sworn congressional testimony on the unfair competition placed on lawful employers because of the absence of immigration law enforcement by the federal government.
Ron Bass, CEO of United Patriots of America with Congressman Tom Tancredo.
Christopher Strunk, Co-Chairman of the NYS Non-affiliated Voters Party (NVP) with Congressman Tom Tancredo
Henry Hussar, NY Police (Retired) with Congressman Tom Tancredo.
Matt Reindl, CEO Stylecraft Corporation with Congressman Tom Tancredo.

View the archived stop amnesty website.

The Mexican matricula consular ID card: safe or sorry? (2003)

On January 8, 2003 Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform and the Metropolitan State College of Denver (MSCD) Office of Student Activities put on a public debate and discussion on the Mexican matricula consular ID card.

CAIRCO edited and produced a 57-minute video tape of this important, timely and provocative debate.


Panelists included:

Ann Allott: immigration attorney, speaker, author.

Richard D. Lamm: former three-term Gov. of Colorado; co-author, The Immigration Time Bomb; member, CAIR Council of Advisors.

Donna L. Lipinski: immigration attorney; currently serving on the Board of Governors nationally for the American Immigration Lawyers Association; spearheaded movement to provide immigration category for Essential Workers and has served on its committee since its formation in 1997.

Michelle Malkin: syndicated columnist and author of the best-selling book Invasion.

Mike McGarry: CAIRCO co-director and spokesman; Colorado State Long-Term Care Ombudsman; currently writing a to-be-published research paper on the effects of mass immigration on senior citizens.

David N. Simmons: practicing immigration attorney since 1986; Adjunct Professor of immigration law at the University of Denver, College of Law; past chapter chair of the Colorado Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association; former honorary legal counsel to the Mexican Consulate General in Denver.


The debate moderator was Dr. Joel Edelstein: Professor Emeritus of Political Science, University of Colorado, Boulder; with extensive experience moderating forums and debates.

Book signing

Michelle Malkin signed copies of her book "Invasion" prior to and after the debate.

Excerpts from the debate

Michelle Malkin: But for me, and I think for most Americans, the issue of national security is paramount. We have to ask whether or not widespread acceptance of this card by many local and state and Federal level agencies as well as businesses in the private sector is a good thing from the standpoint of national security, and I think the honest answer is "Hell no!".

David N. Simmons: I agree with Michelle: I am very concerned about national security. I am very concerned about unrepaired broken fences... We have almost half a century of failed immigration enforcement in this country.

Our immigration policy is flawed and we need to quit talking about making it difficult and start talking about what we can do to move forward in the international world where Chicago by car is just as far away as Hong Kong by airplane in the 21st century.

Dick Lamm: The same rights that we give to Mexico to issue their own ID card would have to be put out to Guatemala and Poland and Ireland and where else? And all of a sudden - think it through - you are going to have 25, 50, 120 countries all issuing their own national ID cards. If you accept one, there is no valid reason not to accept others. And it seems to me you can't have that - as every house needs a door, every country needs a border.

Donna Lipinski: We're all talking about this identification document as if it has some kind of immigration significance. It doesn't. It's simply an ID document. What are we so afraid of? Why are we so xenophobic?

Mike McGarry: This card is not what it is represented to be. There is absolutely no integrity in the issuing process. It is a sham card issued on the strength of faith, by agents of a corrupt government to their illegal aliens residing in our country.

Dick Lamm
Dick Lamm
Dick Lamm, Mikc McGarry, Michelle Malkin
Dick Lamm and Mike McGarry
Michelle Malkin
Michelle Malkin
Mike McGarry, Michelle Malkin
Mike McGarry and Michelle Malkin


Rural Resort Region lawsuit (2001)

In September, 2001, the Rural Resort Region (RRR) held a meeting in Snowmass, Colorado. The RRR invited "workers" (presumably illegal aliens) to attend for free, but levied a $100 admission fee to others opposing the use of illegal alien labor. Four members of Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform filed suit under Colorado's Sunshine Law - and won.

From the article "Summit County commissioner labels RRR lawsuit a nuisance", by Reid Williams, Summit Daily News, July 14, 2003

Aspen City Council member Terry Paulson, Aspen resident Mike McGarry and four other plaintiffs filed a suit claiming the Rural Resort Region violated the Sunshine Law, or the Colorado statute that dictates which gatherings of public officials constitute open meetings.
The group filed the suit following the September 2001 meeting of the Rural Resort Region (RRR) in Snowmass. The RRR comprises Eagle, Garfield, Lake, Pitkin and Summit county government representatives, as well as associate members of municipal governments from those areas. The group lobbies and plans to promote affordable housing, health care and workforce recruitment and retention in those counties...
The plaintiffs are all members of the Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform. The group supports a moratorium on immigration, opposes citizenship for aliens' children, and hopes to see immigration laws better enforced and an end to amnesty acts for illegal immigrants [illegal aliens] - all based on a concern for Colorado, the nation and their resources - according to its Web site."

CAIRCO Billboards (2000)

As part of our ongoing educational effort, Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform sponsored a billboard campaign in the greater Denver area in 2000. That effort was designed to foster public dialog and media attention on the issue of illegal immigration. These billboards emphasized that immigration-driven population growth is unsustainable and that Congress must act now to avoid cheating future generation of Americans of their birthrights. The billboard project was affiliated with the greater nation-wide campaign of ProjectUSA.

Billboard photos

The following images are of some of the CAIRCO billboards displayed in the Spring of 2000.

This image is a photographic composite for maximum clarity.


The Aspen Resolution (1999-2001)

In 1999, the hard work of CAIRCO's Mike McGarry and Aspen City Council member Terry Paulson paid off.  The city of Aspen passed Aspen Resolution #114 supporting population stabilization in the United States. Pitkin county followed suit.

Then during 2000 and 2001 Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform leaders and activists (Mike McGarry, Terry Paulson, Fred Elbel, and Frosty Wooldridge) met with city and county governments across the state to gain support for resolutions at the local government level which would support sustainability and U.S. population stabilization. While testimony in favor of the resolution was repeatedly presented in city council meetings, none of the cities mustered the courage and foresight to pass a similar measure.

Text of the Aspen Resolution #114

City of Aspen, Colorado Passes Population Resolution #114

A resolution of the City of Aspen, Colorado, supporting population stabilization in the United States

December 14, 1999

Whereas: The population of the United States reached about 274 million in 1999 and is growing by approximately three million each year, over 57,000 weekly, the highest population growth rate of the developed countries of the world. Most European countries are at zero or negative population growth.

Whereas: The population of the U.S .is six percent of the world's population, consuming up to 25 percent of the world's natural resources.

Whereas: The ability of the United States to support a population within its carrying capacity is now strained because of population growth. Fifty percent of our original wetlands have been drained to accommodate growth. Ninety-five percent of all U.S. old growth forests have been destroyed. It is estimated that we have consumed approximately three-fourths of all our recoverable petroleum, and we now import more than half of the oil we consume in the United States. America's underground aquifers are being drawn down 23 percent more than their natural rates of recharge.

Whereas: For each person added to the U.S. population, about one acre of open land is lost, causing a total yearly loss of about three million acres. America annually exports $40 Billion in food. If present population trends continue, the U.S. will cease to be a food exporter by about 2030.

Whereas: The report of the Task Force on Population and Consumption of the President's Council on Sustainable Development (1996) said: "The two most important steps toward sustainability are:
1. to stabilize the population promptly, and
2. to move toward greater material and energy efficiency in all production and use of goods and service." The President's Council said, "...reducing immigration levels is a necessary part of population stabilization and the drive toward sustainability."

Whereas: Population growth generated by mass immigration to the United States causes increasing pressures on our environment and forces local governments and communities to spend taxpayers dollars for additional schools, health care facilities, water disposal plants, transportation systems, fire protection, water supplies, power generation plants and many other social and environmental costs.

Whereas: 70 percent of U.S. population growth in the 1990's resulted from mass immigration, comprised of approximately 1.2 million legal immigrants and 300,000 to 400,000 illegal immigrants plus their U.S.- born offspring, annually. If mass immigration continues, the population of the United States is projected to exceed half-a-billion by 2050.

Whereas: Population growth is unsustainable. With a return to replacement levels of immigration, U.S. population can expect to stabilize in another 40 to 50 years. A temporary, all-inclusive five-year immigration reduction to 100,000 annually, followed by a return to 200,000 annually, will eventually allow the U.S. to stabilize its population, at best at about 325 million, and

Whereas: A majority of Americans of all ethnic and racial backgrounds favors substantial reduction in legal immigration and a complete halt to illegal immigration, and

Whereas: The people of the United States and the City of Aspen, Colorado, envision a country with a stable population, material and energy efficiency, a sustainable future, a healthy environment, clean air and water, ample open space, wilderness, abundant wildlife and social and civic cohesion in which the dignity of human life is enhanced and protected.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: That the City of Aspen hereby petitions the Congress of the United States and the President to immediately implement with deliberate speed and by means consistent with the Constitution of the United States, the consensus of the American People and the President's Council-legislation appropriate to stabilize the population of the United States and insure sustainability:

(1) that will encourage and promote all opportunities toward establishing and maintaining material and energy efficiency, social and environmental responsibility;

(2) by a return to traditional replacement levels of legal immigration, approximately 175,000, all-inclusive per year, annually; by

(3) requiring equitable wages and benefits for workers and community environmental protections to be part of all free trade agreements; and

(4) by mandated enforcement of our immigration laws against illegal immigration, thereby promoting the future well being of all the citizens of this Nation and the City of Aspen.

Opening statement by Aspen Councilman Terry Paulson

Below is the opening City Council statement by Aspen Councilman Terry Paulson, who sponsored the resolution in December of 1999:

Fellow Council Members:

This resolution we will be considering for adoption tonight could be the most important consideration we will ever make as representatives of our constituents and their children.

Immigration-driven population increases are transforming America-already the fastest growing country of all the developed countries of the world and the third most populous country in the world-into a country of over a half-a-billion within the near future, within the lifetime of our school children.

In October, I attended and participated in a conference at the Aspen Institute, called The Myth of Sustainable Growth. At that conference, I had the privilege of hearing a remarkable talk, Population, Immigration and Global Ethics, by Jonette Christian, from Maine. Jonette is a family therapist by profession, giving her a very special perspective on this matter before us.

Here is some of what she said: "As this future descends upon our children, public silence about these numbers is deafening. And we are responding like deer with headlights in our eyes-paralyzed or else indifferent-and we would rather talk about almost anything else: urban sprawl, pollution... traffic, declining fish stocks, falling water tables... [smart growth], overcrowded schools, [highways and transportation]-anything to avoid blunt speech about [immigration-driven] population numbers. Speaking to you as a family therapist, this is the behavior of dysfunctional groups. They avoid conversation about the pink elephant in the living room at all costs, and they exhaust themselves in a flurry of helpful activity around peripheral matters. We have agitated, confused and deluded ourselves with the illusion that we are being overwhelmed by many, many problems-when in fact we have primarily only one. But it is the one that terrifies us the most, and we handle that terror by chattering endlessly about everything else. Denying... [ignoring] and minimizing population growth in the 1990s is a hate crime against future generations, and it must end"

And isn't that really the dilemma we are confronted with tonight? We can act as a dysfunctional family by making "safe", reality-denying choices. We can chose to support an ill-defined, general resolution in support of population stabilization, making sure not to mention the I-word, immigration, the prime driving force behind our reckless growth into a country of over a half-a-billion souls. We can ignore prudent, necessary reduction numbers and deny glaring facts that would otherwise encourage establishing a sound and traditionally consistent flow of population stabilizing immigration. And by doing so, we will effectively be choosing to foreclose the future of America's and Colorado's children.

Or we can make the necessary, responsible and, yes, uncomfortable choice. We can pass this resolution intact, a resolution written with carefully considered language and with distinguished, learned support-the only real hope for an eventual stable American population. And by doing that, we will serve as the needed example for other representative bodies to act affirmatively for their constituents, providing them with the opportunity to join the small yet growing number of uncompromising voices now openly acknowledging the emperor is indeed without cloths.

Finally, I am reminded of the frog-in-the-water analogy. You can put a frog in water and turn up the heat little by little until the frog is dead. On the other hand, drop a frog in boiling water and it immediately jumps out. We are all in the pot of water, and the heat is being insidiously turned up, up and up at the immigration knob.

Please, join me, by calling for this deadly, increasing heat to be turned down now to health-giving, bath water temperatures, by passing this resolution as written, and thereby insuring a sustainable future for America and her children.

Pitkin County, Colorado Passes Population Stabilization - Mass Immigration Resolution

A resolution of the Board of County Commissioners of Pitkin County, Colorado, supporting population stabilization in the United States

Resolution # 2000-56 RECITALS

1. The population of the United States reached 275 million in 1999 and is growing by approximately three million each year, over 57,000 weekly, the highest population growth rate of the developed countries of the world. Most developed countries are at zero or negative population growth (Dr. Albert Bartlett, University of Colorado, Boulder).

2. The population of the U.S. is about five percent of the world's population, consuming up to 25 percent of portions of world's natural resources (Population Reference Bureau).

3. A population cannot be stable if, by its size or behavior, it destroys the very life-support systems on which it depends The ability of the United States to support a population within its carrying capacity is now strained because of population growth (Dr. Virginia Abernethy, Population-Environment Balance). Fifty percent of our original wetlands have been drained to accommodate growth (Environmental Protection Agency). Ninety-five percent of all U.S. old growth forests have been destroyed (Save American Forests). It is estimated that we have consumed approximately three-fourths of all our recoverable petroleum, and we now import more than half of the oil we consume in the United States (Bartlett). America's underground aquifers are being drawn down 23 percent more than their natural rates of recharge (Carrying Capacity Network).

4. For each person added to the U.S. population, about one acre of open land is lost through urbanization and degradation, causing a total yearly loss of about three million acres. America annually exports $40 billion in food. If present population trends continue, the U.S. will cease to be a food exporter by about 2030 (Dr. David Pimentel, Cornell University).

5. Immigration is the leading cause of population growth in the Unites States. Population is the leading cause of environmental degradation. (The Environmentalist's Guide to a Sensible Immigration Policy).

6. The report of the Task Force on Population and Consumption of the President's Council on Sustainable Development (1996) said: "The two most important steps toward sustainability are: 1. to stabilize the population promptly, and 2. to move toward greater material and energy efficiency in all production and use of goods and service." The President's Council said, "...reducing immigration levels is a necessary part of population stabilization and the drive toward sustainability" (Executive Summary); and

7. Poverty, exacerbated by population growth generated by population explosion, places demands on infrastructure: schools, health care facilities, waste disposal plants, transportation systems, fire protection, water supplies, power generation plants and other social services that exceed the ability of local jurisdictions and communities to provide these services, forcing those jurisdictions to increase taxes to keep up with demand.

8. Legal and illegal immigration combined is too high for assimilation. In 1998 alone, there were 420,000 illegal permanent entries into the U.S. (U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service) The latest U.S. Census Bureau shows that immigration will add 90 million to the U.S. population and account for 70 percent of population growth within the next 50 years. If mass immigration continues, the population of the U.S. will exceed 400 million by 2050. If current proposals to increase immigration are adopted, the U.S. population could exceed a half-billion by 2050 (U.S. Census Bureau).

9. Contemporary pressures to emigrate from foreign countries are created in large by exponential population growth, displacement and urbanization of farmers, environmental exploitation and degradation, and by inadequate wages, benefits and protections for workers (Dr. Robert Cohen, Boulder, Colorado, Population/Global Resources.

10. Continuous population growth is unsustainable (Bartlett). Considering population momentum, a permanent return to more traditional Twentieth Century (1925 to 1965) immigration levels on all immigration in excess of 175,000 annually, will eventually allow the U.S. to stabilize its population sometime after another 50 years, at best at a level exceeding more than at 350 million Americans (Roy Beck,

11. A majority of Americans of all ethnic and racial backgrounds favor substantial reduction in legal immigration and a complete halt to illegal immigration (1998 Wall Street Journal; 1996 Roper Poll; Hispanic USA Group survey); and

12. The people of the United States and the Board of County Commissioners, County of Pitkin, State of Colorado, envision a country with a stable population, material and energy efficiency, a sustainable future, a healthy environment, clean air and water, ample open space, wilderness, abundant wildlife and social and civic cohesion in which the dignity of human life is enhanced and protected.

13. The Board of County Commissioners recognizes the value of diversity and the contributions on immigrants since the arrival of the first settlers many centuries ago. We also recognize and deplore the exploitation if immigrants through violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, such as minimum wage and overtime. We specifically reject the notion that immigrants (legal and not) are disproportionately criminal or bad people. Nonetheless, we believe immigration, both legal and illegal, should be restrained. The United States has a responsibility to promote family planning opportunities world-wide, to require our trade partners to treat their laborers humanely, and to respect our shared environment.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of County Commissioners of Pitkin County, Colorado, hereby petitions the Congress of the United States and the President to immediately implement, with deliberate speed and by means consistent with the Constitution of the United States, the consensus of the American People and the President's Council, legislation appropriate to stabilize the population of the United States and insure sustainability that:

  • Will encourage and promote all opportunities toward establishing and maintaining material and energy efficiency, social and environmental responsibility
  • Provide for the immediate, permanent establishment of all immigration levels not to exceed 175,000 annually
  • Require equitable wages, protections and benefits for workers and national and community environmental protections to be a mutual part of all free trade agreements
  • Mandated enforcement of our immigration laws against illegal immigration, thereby promoting the future well being of all the citizens of this county, state and nation
  • Provide financial support of programs designed to assist Third World nations with family planning utilizing all methods of education and contraceptives available.


Pitkin County accepts its responsibility to work to improve working and living conditions, both locally and throughout the world, through appropriate regulations that support multi-cultural education programs, that conserve natural resources world-wide, that move toward greater energy efficiency in production and use of goods and services, and that exhibit social responsibility.

Approved on the 22nd day of March 2000

The Myth of Sustainable Growth: Population, Immigration, Environmental Degradation - Aspen (1999)

In 1999, Mike McGarry organized the hugely successful national conference "The Myth of Sustainable Growth: Population, Immigration, Environmental Degradation" at the Aspen Institute. Speakers included Roy Beck of NumbersUSA, Terry Anderson, Jonette Christian, and many more.

Terry Anderson

From the article: "Terry Anderson: The Prisoner of South Central - A Black American on the Front Lines of Illegal Immigration"

By Mike McGarry, Aspen Post, August 20, 2007

I first met Terry Anderson at a conference in Washington DC in 1999, the same year I decided to become hands-on active in immigration reduction. In October of that year Terry came to Aspen at my invitation to speak at a conference of immigration activists I organize and held at the Aspen Institute: The Myth of Sustainable Growth: Population, Immigration, Environmental Degradation.

Terry Anderson, the self-described “prisoner of South Central,” has a Los Angeles radio talk show on Sunday nights that deals exclusively and aggressively with “the illegal alien invasion.” Terry knows intimately the devastating influence illegal immigration is having on Black Americans. He has twice testified on the impact of illegal immigration before U.S. congressional committees, prompting the chairman of one committee to comment that he believed Terry was the only witness ever to testify wearing coveralls, Terry’s signature, radial-chic leisurewear.

Sadly,Terry died in July of 2010. You can watch a video tribute to Terry Anderson produced by Fred Elbel.

Population Immigration and Global Ethics

Jonette Christian spoke at the conference. Her powerful talk, "Population Immigration and Global Ethics" was notable for its insight and sobriety. An excerpt:

"We all long for a world in which every child born has the chance to flourish. What are the choices we need to make which will move the world in that direction? We must consider those choices very carefully. Saving people is not the same thing as empowering people to save themselves. If we fail to see this distinction, then we may cause enormous chaos. There is nothing more powerful than putting our own house in order, stabilizing our population, lowering our consumption, planning for the welfare of our descendants, and setting an example of enlightened self government for the world."

In 2002 Jonette returned to Aspen at the invitation of the Sopris Foundation’s State of the World Conference, whose theme that year was, Is a Sustainable Future Possible? Jonette delivered her provocative talk, Finding the Trimtab, to a sold-out Paepcke Auditorium. An excerpt:

“Sustainability will be achieved in pieces, and America is our piece. And this alone will be a breathtaking challenge. Like territorial animals in nature, order is established by marking the borders and dividing national responsibilities. We cannot handle our piece, if we have open borders, multiple agendas, and global missions. We disempower ourselves when we assume more than we can possibly handle.”

Article: Population back on enviros' agenda - Solutions global and local

By Mike McGarry, Glenwood Post Independent, August 2, 2002

“If sustainability means meeting the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations to meet their needs, it is axiomatic that continuous population growth is unsustainable, globally and locally.” — Jonette Christian, Carrying Capacity Network

Stabilizing an immigration-driven U.S. population growth rate that is exploding to an unsustainable doubling within the lifetimes of today’s school children is crucial to providing a sustainable future, locally and globally.

Those were the essential words of Jonette Christian and Colorado’s former three-term governor, Richard Lamm, two of the speakers at the Aspen, Colorado-based Sopris Foundation’s State of the World Conference 2002 in Aspen on July 12-14. The conference topic was, “Is a sustainable future possible?”

Thirty years ago Americans were much more aware of the threats overpopulation posed to the country and the world. Stabilizing US population was integral to the ideals of the first Earth Day in 1970, and virtually every environmental organization officially endorsed the need to halt US population growth as necessary to meeting sustainability goals.

The 1970s were also the years the US began showing a noticeable population weight gain from what was the beginning of an unprecedented mass-immigration binge. Since1970 we have engorged ourselves with a dyspeptic 83 million new consumers, a number greater that the populations of most of the countries of the world. Nearly 70 percent of that growth came from immigration.=

Fast-forward from 1970 to 1999 and you might not recognize the place. The country’s population had soared by more than a third, to 278 million, becoming the third most populous nation in the world, with immigration levels several times our historical averages. By now most environmental organizations had dropped US population stabilization from their priorities, and what formerly were convivial coffee-shop discussions about population were now nasty, accusatory shouting matches.

Meanwhile, the population-consumption juggernaut was gaining momentum. Total US energy consumption, for example, in the 1990s grew by 13 percent, exactly the percentage of population growth that decade. The decade of the ‘90s makes clear the numbers of consumers cannot be isolated from the amount consumed. Even if Americans were to significantly reduce consumption levels and continue to improve resource technology, as we must, most gains would be lost to immigration-fueled population growth.

The many influences causing our national population priorities to about-face over the years were discussed in the Journal of Policy History’s, The Environmental Movement'sRetreat from Advocating US Population Stabilization (1970-1998, Beck). What’s important to note is that within that time frame the guiding population principle of Earth Day 1970, Think Globally-Act Locally, was supplanted with, “Population is a global problem (exclusively) requiring global solutions.” Thus was born and promulgated an intellectual dishonesty.

Deforestation is a global problem, but nobody would suggest we wait for the world to tackle our nation’s deforestation challenges. Moreover, there are nearly 200 countries and thousands of cultures and subcultures in the world. International bodies are notorious for their inability to agree on even the nature of a problem, never mind the nightmarish prospect of imposing global one-size-fits-all solutions.

The nation-state is the only practical and effective unit of community and therefore of public policy implementation. International cooperation and assistance do not suffer because of that fact, just as respecting and acting on the primacy of family does not mean families are uninvolved in the greater community.

Not to be ignored is the research by Dr. Virginia Abernethy of Vanderbilt University showing the opportunity to emigrate for the citizens of nations and members of cultures with unsustainable population growth rates keeps them from implementing the necessary  measures to stabilize their populations.

Hence, Mexico, which has more than tripled its numbers over the last 50 years (and is currently on a 32-year doubling course), has no substantive population policy. It also explains why the president of Bangladesh recently said matter-of-factly he would just send his nationals to the “under-populated” US to ameliorate the effects of his country’s projected population doubling within 50 years.

Is a sustainable future possible? No, not when the 6.2 billion people of the world continue to yearly add 80 million more to the planet, when the US continues to be the sixth fasting growing country in the world and when Colorado continues to grow at twice the US rate.

Yes, if we heed the words of Christian and Lamm and if we immediately take to heart the those of the former US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Environment and Population, Lindsey Grant (Elephants in the Volkswagen): “Most world environmental and social problems can be solved but only if population policy is an integral part of the solution.”

CAIR newsletters (mid to late 1990s)

Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform (CAIR; currently known as CAIRCO) was founded in the 1990's by Bill Herron, a refugee from Mexifornia - California. Bill and Jan Herron both put in a huge amount of effort pushing for immigration reform, especially within the GOP.

An instrumental part of this process consisted of CAIR newsletters and informational mailings that were distributed to elected public servants and interested parties. Over the years, Bill did many public speaking engagements.