Confronted about using graphic from Council of Conservative Citizens, Dobbs asked: "[G]ot anything a little more recent?"February 6, 2008 6:32 PM EST ››› KIRSTIN ELLISON
On the February 4 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, National Council of La Raza president and CEO Janet Murguia accused host Lou Dobbs of using "hate groups to make your case on immigration." As evidence, she noted that Dobbs had aired a graphic from the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC). During the discussion, Murgiua held up a screenshot of the CCC-sourced graphic, which appeared on the May 23, 2006, edition of the show and featured a map of Aztlan (the portion of the American Southwest that purported supporters of the "reconquista" movement are said to believe belongs to Mexico). However, Dobbs dismissed Murquia's criticism, asking "You got anything a little more recent?" He also asked, "How long was that on the air?" When Murguia responded, "It doesn't matter how long," Dobbs replied, "Of course it does," adding that it was aired only for "[s]econds." Dobbs went on to say, "You have just given them more airtime than this network, this broadcast ever did." In response to the criticism of CNN over the appearance of the graphic, on May 25, 2006, a CNN spokeswoman said that a producer had "grabbed the Council of Conservative Citizens map without knowing the nature of the organization" and that its inclusion in the segment "regrettably, was missed in the vetting process."
According to the CCC's Statement of Principles, authored by Sam Francis, a now-deceased former Washington Times and syndicated columnist who made numerous controversial race-related remarks: "We therefore oppose the massive immigration of non-European and non-Western peoples into the United States that threatens to transform our nation into a non-European majority in our lifetime. ... We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called 'affirmative action' and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races."
Dobbs also labeled the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as "absolute advocate groups for open borders and amnesty for illegal aliens" and said of the ADL, "They are a joke." In fact, According to the ADL, the organization "was founded in 1913 'to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all'" and "fights anti-Semitism and all forms of bigotry, defends democratic ideals and protects civil rights for all." The SPLC was founded in 1971 and, according to its website, "is internationally known for its tolerance education programs, its legal victories against white supremacists and its tracking of hate groups."
Dobbs also made repeated reference to the SPLC as a "fundraising organization." Minuteman Project founder Jim Gilchrist also called SPLC a "fundraising organization" on the January 30 edition of CNN Headline News' Glenn Beck. In response to a question about ADL's involvement in the immigration debate, Gilchrist said: "Fundraising. Anti-Defamation League, like the Southern Poverty Law Center, are professional fundraising groups. And if they can proliferate hate by using people like Mark Krikorian and the Center for Immigration Studies or Jim Gilchrist, Minuteman Project, as a target for their hate, they can raise millions of dollars."
From the February 4 edition of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight:
MURGUIA: Sure. I'm sorry. You said that you support the Minuteman Project, and that they're fine Americans who make it up, who make it up in all they've accomplished fully, relentlessly, and proudly.
MURGUIA: So I want to make sure you understand. These are folks who are documented to be part of hate groups.
DOBBS: Who documented them?
MURGUIA: Southern Poverty Leadership --
DOBBS: Southern Poverty Law Center?
MURGUIA: And the American Defamation League [sic], ADL.
DOBBS: Right. Both of whom are absolute advocate groups for open borders and amnesty for illegal aliens.
MURGUIA: That's your opinion.
DOBBS: No, it's not my opinion.
MURGUIA: Yes, it is your opinion.
DOBBS: No, it's a fact.
MURGUIA: I think you couch this -- you give them this aura of respectability. You also cited in 2006 a source of your, you know, branding CNN and Lou Dobbs around the Council of Conservative Citizens, which also the SPLC has named as a white nationalist hate group. This is a group that denigrates, routinely, blacks as genetically inferior, complained about, you know, Jewish power, and also denigrated homosexuals as perverted sodomites. All I'm saying is, you're co-branding yourself and CNN with a white supremacist nationalist hate group.
LOU DOBBS: Did we do that?
MURGUIA: This is --
DOBBS: Did we really?
MURGUIA: -- this was on your program on May 23rd --
DOBBS: How long was that on the air?
MURGUIA: -- 2006.
DOBBS: How long was that --
MURGUIA: It doesn't matter how long.
DOBBS: Of course it does.
MURGUIA: It doesn't.
DOBBS: Of course it does.
MURGUIA: You are using hate speech, hate groups to make a case on immigration.
DOBBS: I'm going to tell you straight up --
MURGUIA: To make a case on immigration.
DOBBS: Do you want the answer?
DOBBS: You want to know how long it was on the air?
MURGUIA: It doesn't matter.
DOBBS: Seconds. You have just given them more airtime than this network, this broadcast ever did.
MURGUIA: And I'm holding you accountable for having given them any sort of exposure.
DOBBS: Oh, you are?
MURGUIA: And the fact that you're associating yourself --
DOBBS: So you should be --
MURGUIA: -- with this extremist --
DOBBS: I associated myself?
MURGUIA: You cite them as a fact --
DOBBS: I did?
MURGUIA: -- on this.
DOBBS: Did I?
MURGUIA: This says, "Dobbs -- LOU DOBBS TONIGHT, CNN."
MURGUIA: That's there for everyone to see.
MURGUIA: And this is from your show on May 23rd, 2006.
MURGUIA: This kind of hate speech, this kind --
DOBBS: From what year?
DOBBS: Right. You got anything a little more recent?
MURGUIA: You know, the ADL documents code words for hate.
DOBBS: The ADL -- oh, yeah, sure.
MURGUIA: And you've used a few of those code words for hate.
DOBBS: Name one code word.
MURGUIA: Well, they talk about dehumanizing and demonizing immigrants --
DOBBS: That's their word. It's not my word.
MURGUIA: Well, I'm telling you, they've had a --
DOBBS: What's my word?
MURGUIA: -- clear record of documenting hate speech.
DOBBS: They have?
MURGUIA: Yes, they have.
DOBBS: The ADL is --
MURGUIA: They are a very well-respected voice.
DOBBS: Not by me.
MURGUIA: The Anti-Defamation League --
DOBBS: They are a joke.
MURGUIA: They are not a joke. They are a long-standing organization.
DOBBS: I want you to go to that website of yours and listen to that discussion on there. That woman is a joke. OK?
DOBBS: Janet Murguia, you have contributed to, to me, just a reprehensible approach on the part of any organization. You've joined the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is now nothing more than an advocacy and fundraising organization. I think you are the one who should be held accountable.