An Alabama Republican has received stern rebuke from a leading Hispanic lawmaker after making violent tinged remarks in reference to undocumented immigrants.
U.S. Rep. Charles Gonzalez (D-TX), chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, denounced GOP Rep. Mo Brooks’ comments made to an Alabama TV station that he would do anything “short of shooting” undocumented immigrants to curb illegal immigration.
Brooks made the comments during an interview on June 29 to local station WHNT.
“As your congressman on the House floor, I will do anything short of shooting them. Anything that is lawful, it needs to be done because illegal aliens need to quit taking jobs from American citizens,” he said.
Gonzalez used “hateful” and “irresponsible” to describe the poor choice of words by the freshman Republican.
“Words have consequences,” he said, and added that such violent rhetoric has “no place in the discussion for realistic solutions to our country’s immigration problems.”
A surge of crime was reported by La Plaza against Hispanic immigrants last year at the height of the anti-immigrant rhetoric, following passage of Arizona’s SB 1070. Some cases resulted in fatalities.
For this reason, comments like the ones made by Brooks and Kansas state lawmaker Virgil Peck, who suggested undocumented immigrants be shot like feral hogs, are especially alarming to Hispanic leaders.
The latest comments by Brooks “reflect a hateful, dehumanizing undercurrent,” according to Gonzalez.
A class-action lawsuit has already been filed by the American Civil Liberties Union calling the law “draconian” and unconstitutional.