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Petitioning Opinion Editor, Politico Allison Silver

Tell Politico To Quit Publishing Extremists Like NumbersUSA


According to its mission, hugely popular political newspaper Politico promotes "journalism that insists on the primacy of facts over ideology."

This week, however, the newspaper provided a platform for activist Roy Beck, an anti-immigrant ideologue with clear ties to white supremacists. And promoting a veiled racist immigration ideology rather than facts is Beck's full-time job.

Beck's anti-immigrant organization, NumbersUSA, is scarily effective at appearing to be a mainstream voice in the immigration debate. 

But NumbersUSA is anything but mainstream. It was started as part of US Inc., a project of John Tanton, a longtime friend and collegue of Beck's. A recent Southern Poverty Law Center has outlined a laundry list of Tanton's ties to various right-wing extremists and white supremacists.

NumbersUSA's acceptance as a mainstream voice needs to stop. Tell Politico to quit portraying organizations with ties to white supremacists and other extremists as mainstream.

Photo credit: quinn.anya

Letter to
Opinion Editor, Politico Allison Silver
According to its mission, Politico promotes "journalism that insists on the primacy of facts over ideology."

This week, however, the newspaper provided a platform for activist Roy Beck, an anti-immigrant ideologue with clear ties to white supremacists ("Obama's Immigration Opportunity", Feb. 3, 2010). And promoting a veiled racist immigration ideology rather than facts is Beck's full-time job.

Beck's anti-immigrant organization, NumbersUSA, has been frighteningly successful at appearing to be a mainstream voice in the immigration debate. But NumbersUSA is anything but mainstream.

NumbersUSA was started as part of U.S. Inc., a project of Beck's longtime friend and colleague John Tanton, who has connections to "Holocaust deniers, former Klan lawyers, and leading white nationalist thinkers. He introduced leaders of FAIR, on whose board he still sits today, to the president of the Pioneer Fund, a racist outfit set up to encourage 'race betterment,' at a private club. He promoted the work of an infamous anti-Semitic professor, Kevin MacDonald, to both FAIR officials and a major donor. At one point, pursuing his interest in eugenics, the utterly discredited 'science' of breeding a better human race, he tried to find out if Michigan had laws allowing forced sterilization." (Southern Poverty Law Center)

NumbersUSA and its staff have close ties to white supremacist organizations. For example, a recent NumbersUSA anti-immigrant video featured Roan Garcia-Quintana, an active participant in the white supremacist organization the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC). Quintana-Garcia opened his presentation at the CCC's national conference last year by saying, "There are three types of people in the world, Negroids, Mongroids, and Caucasians.”

NumbersUSA also released a 2009 report in conjunction with Californians for Population Stabilization, an organization whose media director Rick Oltman was also active in the CCC and connected to VDare.com, an anti-immigrant/white nationalist website ostensibly named after the first white person born in America. Oltman was also kicked off a Republican political post for publicly supporting the beating of undocumented immigrants in Southern California.

And in June 2010, NumbersUSA director Rosemary Jenks spoke at an anti-immigrant rally that began with a motorcycle rally by the White Boy Society, a white nationalist biker gang.

NumbersUSA's acceptance as a mainstream voice needs to stop. Please quit portraying organizations with ties to white supremacists and other extremists as mainstream, and quit printing their op-ed pieces. I ask that you issue an apology for providing a platform that legitimizes a racist, extremist group and state that you will no longer be publishing op-eds by Roy Beck.

Sincerely,