Ted Cruz To Appear On IA Radio Show Days After Host Proposed Enslaving Undocumented Immigrants

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is scheduled to appear on Jan Mickelson's radio show tomorrow, just days after the Iowa host proposed a plan to enslave undocumented immigrants if they refuse to leave the country.

On his August 17 show, Mickelson proposed an immigration plan that included posting signs around Iowa warning undocumented immigrants that they could either leave or “become property of the state.” He added, “And we start using compelled labor, the people who are here illegally would therefore be owned by the state and become an asset of the state rather than a liability and we start inventing jobs for them to do.” When confronted about his plan by a caller who said “everybody would believe it sounds like slavery,” Mickelson responded, “what's wrong with slavery?”

During an interview with Media Matters, Mickelson stood by his comments, calling them “constitutionally defensible, legally defensible, morally defensible, biblically defensible and historically defensible.” He claimed you would likely only have to force “maybe one or two people” to work in a “highly visible fashion,” which would lead to “a vast sucking sound of illegals departing the state.”

Republican presidential candidates have flocked to Mickelson's show. According to Mickelson, candidates “would understand [his position] from a historical and intellectual point of view,” and “most of them would understand my point isn't serious, the point is philosophical.” (On his show the day he laid out his plan, Mickelson told a caller, “you think I'm just pulling your leg. I am not.”)

Today, as Mickelson's comments receive widespread media coverage, the host announced that Sen. Cruz will appear on the August 21 edition of his program:

MICKELSON: Good morning everybody, welcome back to the conversation. I'm Jan Mickelson. We have some open line time between now and the bottom of the hour when The Big Show starts. Tomorrow's program, at a little bit after 9 o'clock [AM CST] we'll be talking with Senator Ted Cruz. He will be out here as a presidential candidate. That should be lots and lots of fun and very, very interesting. He's one of the most dynamic speakers on the tour this time and I've been reading some of his think pieces as a legal scholar in one of the Texas legal scholarly magazines and I'm going to be talking to him about some of that tomorrow morning. That should be interesting.  

Mickelson told Media Matters that presidential candidates actively pursue appearances on his show: “They'll come, they'll pursue it and say 'can we come on,' and 'sure,' I don't chase them around looking for them to come on, they usually call and ask me.”

Cruz has been a repeat guest on Mickelson's program this year. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker appeared on Mickelson's August 17 broadcast after the host laid out his immigration plan.                  

On August 19, Cruz was endorsed by Steve Deace, another prominent Iowa-based conservative radio host. Like Mickelson, Deace has made offensive remarks about the LGBT and immigrant communities. He also recently suggested that the Republican Party should have thanked presidential candidate Donald Trump for his suggestion that Mexican immigrants are rapists.