WASHINGTON – The nation’s largest immigrant-rights coalition, the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM), released the following statement on behalf of Kica Matos in response to Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-MN) denigrating comments about the refugee children running away from gangs and violence and coming to the U.S. for help:
“The Republicans’ callous attitudes about vulnerable populations is nothing new. But smearing vulnerable children in danger of being tortured and killed is a dangerous, horrendous new low.
“If Bachmann and the Republicans had their way, we would send all of these children to their graves or to the ranks of the most dangerous gangs in the continent – those are the choices the children face. Republicans will apparently stop at nothing, having crossed a moral line that no elected official should ever be allowed to cross: denigrating vulnerable children and hitting them when they’re down.
“What’s worse, Bachmann’s comments did not happen by accident. They are part of a broader agenda by top Republican brass to send their henchmen out to smear the children and satisfy their own political ambitions – they will not let any sense of truth or shame get in the way of a political opportunity. Republicans are trying to use these imperiled children as a last stand for their shrinking base. This type of fear stoking from Republicans goes hand in hand with the hateful, visceral showing from the worst elements of their anti-immigrant wing – from people spitting on demonstrators to hateful graffiti on the path of the children.
“It is a tragic day when this is what one of our two major parties has to offer. Scapegoating children when they need help is the lowest of the low – it is dangerous. Bachmann’s statements must be condemned far and wide by the Republican Party.”