Tancredo 2.0

|

Roll Call (print edition) alerts us to some politics in Keystone State: Hazelton Mayor Lou Barletta, talk-radio-famous for his crackdown on illegal immigrants, might run for Congress against Democratic incumbent Paul Kanjorski.

Barletta lost to the veteran Congressman in 2002, but his anti-illegal immigration policies in Hazelton garnered national media attention. He's also so popular in his town that both Democrats and Republicans nominated him for re-election this year, after which he'll make a final decision about running against Kanjorski.

That was a weird election; Barletta started running before redistricting, when a scandal made Kanjorski look vulnerable, but Republicans and Democrats made a bargain to save some of their incumbents and gave Kanjorski a more Democratic district. In a good year for Republicans Barletta lost by 14 points. Cut to four years later:

Last month, in a raucous meeting, the mayor and City Council passed the Illegal Immigration Relief Act. (Barletta wore a bulletproof vest because, he says, Hazleton is menaced by a surge in crime committed by illegal immigrants.) The act imposes a $1,000-per-day fine on any landlord who rents to an illegal immigrant, and it revokes for five years the business license of any employer who hires one.

The act also declares English to be the city's official language. Employees are forbidden to translate documents into another language without official authorization.

The law doesn't take effect for another month. But the Republican mayor already sees progress. "I see illegal immigrants picking up and leaving—some Mexican restaurants say business is off 75 percent," Barletta says. "The message is out there."

The 11th district of Pennsylvania voted for Kerry over Bush by 6 points and it's only 2.5 percent Hispanic. Roll Call's take: "If Barletta gets in the race, Kanjorski will have his work cut out for him." I think that's right. Barletta is a bona fide rock star: He, Joe Arpaio, Jim Gilchrist and retiring Rep. Tom Tancredo are the Beatles of the border war. Those Republican consultants who think the anti-immigration wing is killing them in the long-term are reaching for the Pepto today. (And do you think the Tancredos and the Barlettas ever bumped into each other on the Mayflower?)

Kerry Howley on Mexican panic in our whitest states.

NEXT: Is Pornography a Catalyst of Sexual Violence?

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Caption Contest!

    “Hey is that the sun coming up? My, my, look at the time! Gotta go, seeya!”

  2. some Mexican restaurants say business is off 75 percent

    Er. The proper metric for whether or not illegals are in town is not who eats at the Mexican restaurants — but who’s cooking the food in ALL the restaurants.

  3. When politicians see a niche that, if they fill it, will bring them power, they do it. If it’s working for him, he ain’t gonna stop, and others will emulate him. Great.

  4. Let me get this straight. People with names like Barletta and Kanjorski seek to represent residents in an area famous for anti-immigrant sentiment?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  5. “The act imposes a $1,000-per-day fine on any landlord who rents to an illegal immigrant, and it revokes for five years the business license of any employer who hires one.”

    The real reason for Business Licenses laid bare. Obey our petty rules or we will destroy your livelihood.

  6. …Lou Barletta, talk-radio-famous for his crackdown on illegal immigrants, might run for Congress

    Even money says this was the plan from day one.

    1. Get tough on Mexicans
    2. Get free publicity
    3. Get elected to Congress

    Too bad immigration kookery doesn’t actually win elections.

  7. It’s nice to see a necroamerican running for office. It’s too bad he’s a bigot.

  8. Barletta? Oh, yeah, Barletta:

    Don’t go to bed, with no price on your head – No, no, don’t do it.
    Don’t do the crime, if you can’t do the time – Yeah, don’t do it.
    And keep your eye on the sparrow.
    When the going gets narrow.

    Don’t do it, don’t do it.
    Where can I go where the cold winds don’t blow,
    Now. Well, well, well.

  9. Those Republican consultants who think the anti-immigration wing is killing them in the long-term are reaching for the Pepto today.

    Let’s hope it’s Chinese Pepto, the one with the antifreeeeeze.

    But, seriously, I strongly suspect that those consultants are basically paid off by those who profit from illegal activity. Perhaps if Weigel wants to do some real reporting he could look into that.

    And, regarding the Mayflower crack, I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone of French/Spanish/Russian/English heritage ever bring up that they used to own part of our territory (except the latter, in a joking way). And, other previous groups (Italians, Poles, Irish, etc.) had no claim whatsoever.

    Yet, those who profit from illegal activity – and their paid shills – are allowing those who think they have a claim to our territory to resettle the “disputed” territories. I mean, seriously, if it were happening in another country – and their were no financial stake for the advocates – the problems with that would be difficult to ignore.

    And, the MexicanGovernment – assisted by useful idiots – is currently distributing SchoolTextbooks to US PublicSchool children presenting their side of our history.

    And, several HispanicLeaders – including a U.S. Rep – are former members or leaders of a radical group that has BlutUndBoden beliefs. And, there’s no response to those BlutUndBoden beliefs due to paid hacks ignoring or hand-waving them away.

    As for Howley, compare this:

    reason.com/blog/show/121987.html

    with this:

    house.gov/paul/tst/tst2006/tst103006.htm

    Reason readers should really take a look at what Reason ultimately supports: more corporatism and subsidies, not less. And, less freedom, not more.

  10. Did TLB just use German?

  11. I’m glad the first post touched on the utter creepiness of that photo.

  12. The compound word thing as TLB uses it is scaring me. Then again many things I don’t understand scare me (it wouldn’t scare me if TLB consistently made compounds, but no he seems to do it randomly).

  13. Jeez, I just got finished making fun of Donderoooooo…, and now the lonewacko rears his ignorant, xenophobic nonsense. Alas, no rest for the weary.

  14. Barletta is a bona fide rock star: He, Joe Arpaio, Jim Gilchrist and retiring Rep. Tom Tancredo are the Beatles of the border war.

    That’s some mighty fine company right there. But Beatles? More like…
    well, I can’t come up with anything.

  15. I’m never surprised when a anti homosexual crusader gets outed as a closet queer. Along those lines, does anyone other than me suspect that TLB is a 2nd generation wetback who’s trying to “pass”?

    Food for thought.

  16. That’s some mighty fine company right there. But Beatles? More like…
    well, I can’t come up with anything.

    The Strawberry Alarm Clock?

  17. With a name like “Chris Kelly”? Probably not.

    He is, however, an IrishCatholic who is planning to deliver our RepublicanGovernment into the hands of the CatholicChurch, who are at this moment conspiring with the EuropeanPrinces to integrate this country into their secretly planned UniversalMonarchy. The first plan in the construction of the UniversalMonarchy is the completion of the IrishTranscontinentalRailroad.

  18. I don’t trust people’s whose names end in vowels.

    BURN THE WITCH!!!

  19. [Lonewacko is] an IrishCatholic who is planning to deliver our RepublicanGovernment into the hands of the CatholicChurch, who are at this moment conspiring with the EuropeanPrinces to integrate this country into their secretly planned UniversalMonarchy.

    Undoubtedly, he is an AlbinoAssassin for OpusDei.

  20. Why does Reason even attempt to engage in a debate on immigration? Every time someone voices their objections, no matter how well-reasoned, to illegal immigration, whether those objections are for legal, national security or economic reasons, Reason, Kerry Howley in particular, just labels these individuals as racists and xenophobes and rejects their arguments out-of-hand. A perfect example of this is the following quote:
    “It’s hard to get very far in a debate over immigration reform without prompting the claim “but they broke the law” — the implication being that, hey, it’s not the Mexicanness we object to, it’s the violation of our infallible, divinely inspired, uniformly just immigration law. I can’t take this argument seriously…”.

    If such is the case, if legitimate arguments are summarily dismissed because you dislike the person’s political stance, why the hell should anyone even bother? Preaching to the choir does not a debate make. For all the bluster about independent thinking amongst libertarians, I see an awful lot of group-think occuring here.

    P.S. Stupid jokes like this one: “And do you think the Tancredos and the Barlettas ever bumped into each other on the Mayflower?)” do nothing to bolster your “point”.

  21. They aren’t anti immigrant. They are immigrants themselves. They had very little crime. They had a booming tourist business. Then everyone wanted to move there. Then crime rose. Then in a period of five years they all got fired from their previous jobs either by outsourcing or by getting laid off and the managers in that case would be rehired at half their salary and told to learn spanish. They hated white people from New York and New Jersey before spanish people ever became noticable. Go to the mom and pops by the ski slopes and you will see signs that say tourists are always in season. We like to hunt. They liked nice neighborhoods and low crime and now all you other people ruined it. A lot happen to be illegals who shouldn’t be there anyway. It has nothing to do with race, they liked it better with schools that weren’t overcrowded and streets that were damn near completely safe. Who wouldn’t want that? They weren’t religious nutjobs either, there are plenty of bars. See some of us just aren’t savages. Now people are shooting guns at basketball courts I played at when I was a kid. This is ridiculous, children shouldn’t have to live like that.

  22. Bopo – Objecting to illegal immigration for legal reasons? I’m not sure what your argument here is, but arguing that illegal immigration should remain illegal because it’s currently against the law is not a useful line of debate. If your argument is something else, then okay. (I’m not making fun of you, btw, I’ve heard this exact argument from people on the WoD).

    I think there should be serious changes in immigration law, although I think we should hand out more green cards rather than allowing citizenship to become easier.

    I will agree with you that many people who argue for freer borders rush to the ‘racist’ card a bit too quick. I don’t, because I live in Central Florida, and there are many people here who want to restrict immigration here – Anglos who want other Anglos to stop moving here from other parts of the country. Extrapolating from this, it’s obvious there are other factors than racism that make people want to restrict immigration.

  23. You make no sense whatsoever.. Barlletta is just like all Itlians a crook. His bigotry will be his downfall. He still owes $200,000 dollars from his first try at congress from five years ago. He never paid the lawyers he hired to defend his vogus law, and Hazleton budget is in the red. Great congressman he is going to be. Don’t let his bigotry fool you, Barletta is a self serving pompous ass.

  24. Let me get this straight. People with names like Barletta and Kanjorski seek to represent residents in an area famous for anti-immigrant sentiment?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    How about this one,a crooked mafioso name like Barletta is going to fight crime. They have a monopoly in crime. They don’t want to lose the only source of income Italians have, crime. They don’t want HBO to come up with the Hispanic version of “The Sopranos”
    HBO can call it “The Serranos”

  25. Bopo says: If such is the case, if legitimate arguments are summarily dismissed because you dislike the person’s political stance, why the hell should anyone even bother? Preaching to the choir does not a debate make. For all the bluster about independent thinking amongst libertarians, I see an awful lot of group-think occuring here.

    The main reason I’m here isn’t to engage the Reason contributors or the usual commenters (some of whom are just sock puppets).

    I’m here for the occasional “normal” who visits and who might be a (soon-to-be-ex) Reason subscriber or a non-subscriber who will then hopefully realize that what Reason says can’t be trusted. The commenters who engage in ad homs and the like actually help me in that effort.

  26. Oh don’t get me wrong Lou is just a grandstander. He probably has mob ties. Yeah their politicians are crap. Your politicians are just as bad. Life as a libertarian in that area is no better than anywhere else. I was merely commenting on immigration. I never stuck up for Lou. He didn’t get media attention for no reason. He had some help from high up, rumor was that it was Santorum. For those of you that are unfamiliar with the former Senator should just google “Santorum” and see what pops up.

  27. There are some great Italians that work very hard. All the Mafia crap is just fantasy.

    I do agree with you anyway, These politician want to drive all the farmers out, get rid of the factories, restaurants and housing industry Bankrupt, Who the hell is going to do all that crappie work. Too many angry people are not looking at the mess Bush is leaving behind. We are in trouble and is not because of the illegal, They are vulnerable because their illegal status and they are in need of a better life. I liked Barletta before but now I see his strategy. Use Hazleton as a stepping stone to the congress and leave Hazleton with a bankrupt budget, They will be sorry they let this rat walk over them, But then again they deserve whatever they get for their bigotry

  28. “Who the hell is going to do all that crappie work.”

    Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo…domo
    Thank you very much, Mr. Roboto
    For doing the jobs that nobody wants to


  29. The main reason I’m here isn’t to engage the Reason contributors or the usual commenters (some of whom are just sock puppets).

    i’ve been meaning to ask you where you buy your googly-eyes. archie mcphee?

    also thank you for the lulz. never forget your primary mission is to provide us entertainment. (that this is also your secondary and tertiary missions is an unfortunate side-effect of your lack of versatility.)

  30. “I’m here for the occasional “normal” who visits and who might be a (soon-to-be-ex) Reason subscriber or a non-subscriber who will then hopefully realize that what Reason says can’t be trusted.”

    or

    choices always were a problem for you, what you need is someone strong to guide you

  31. Why does TLB CombineWords LikeThis?

  32. Fact: The sudden drop in business at Hispanic Resterants and stores is a clear statement made by the population that they disagree with the influx of illegals in their town and their burden to the tax base and the schools etc.

    Fact: The Hispanics there have also sheltered illegals and also gangs who have contributed to a rise in crime and violent crime the likes the city has never seen. Once, demmed the safest city in Penn., its now not safe for anyone, even the hispanics.

    Fact: The great Mayopr barletta has won his 3rd term as mayor with a 9-1 margin! I hope he rides that type of overwellming support into congress and all the way to Governor!

    Illegals are just that! Illegal! Send them all packing!

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.