For those two or three people remaining in America who are still uncertain if Lou Dobbs is an immigration extremist, the CNN and radio show host has removed any doubts: He is. Dobbs is a headliner next week when the Federation for American Immigration Reform — FAIR — takes its annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” show to Washington, D.C.
Some 47 radio station talk show blabbers are scheduled to broadcast Sept. 15-16 from Capitol Hill. They will interview members of Congress, immigration reform proponents and — best of all — “high profile media personalities and activists,” according to FAIR. FAIR members also will try to buttonhole elected representatives for a chat about immigration issues, and there will be a reception to recognize those who have made “significant contributions towards true immigration reform.”
Dobbs’ scheduled broadcast at the event prompted Media Matters for America President Eric Burns to write an open letter to CNN President Jonathan Klein on Aug. 28. Burns noted that the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated FAIR a hate group.
Among other things, FAIR has employed officials in key positions who are also members of white supremacist groups, and promoted racist conspiracy theories about Mexico’s secretly coveting the American Southwest, and another theory claiming secret plans to merge the United States, Mexico and Canada. FAIR was founded in 1979 by John Tanton, whose long history of bigotry toward Latinos and Catholics has been well documented by the SPLC.
Dobbs already has damaged CNN’s credibility by the “attention and legitimacy he gave to the ‘birther’ movement” recently, Burns wrote. [SPLC President Richard Cohen wrote to Klein in July calling on him to remove Dobbs from the air because of his lending credence to birthers’ unsubstantiated claims that President Obama wasn’t born in the United States and therefore can’t legally be president]. “CNN’s association with FAIR through Mr. Dobbs is nothing less than a stain on an organization that calls itself ‘The Most Trusted Name in News,’” Burns wrote.
As of Tuesday afternoon, Burns and Media Matters hadn’t received a response from Klein. It seems unlikely the CNN honcho will prohibit Dobbs’ participation in the FAIR event. One need only look at the name of last year’s headliner to see why: Lou Dobbs.