U.S. News Ignores Racist Ties And History Of Nativist Group, NumbersUSA

U.S. News & World Report highlighted the efforts of nativist group NumbersUSA in an article on immigration reform without providing any information on the history of the organization or its founder's ties to white supremacist organizations.

On February 20, U.S. News & World Report discussed the efforts of NumbersUSA, which it called a “restrictive immigration group,” and Executive Director Roy Beck to organize against the recent push for immigration reform in Congress:

NumbersUSA Action, the country's largest grassroots restrictive immigration group, is just one of the organizations gearing up for a bitter battle over how to reform the country's immigration system. Executive Director Roy Beck says support has only grown since his group defeated comprehensive immigration reform in 2007. Five years ago, the group had just over 300,000 members. Today its ballooned to more than 1.4 million, Beck says.

The article continued to highlight the work that NumbersUSA has done to drum up support for its extremely restrictionist immigration policy but did not go into any detail about the history of the group or its leader Roy Beck.

NumbersUSA was founded under the watchful eye of nativist and modern architect of the anti-immigration movement Dr. John Tanton. Tanton, who is well known for his anti-immigrant rhetoric and association with the white nationalist newspaper The Social Contract, is also the founder of three major anti-immigrant groups, NumbersUSA, the Center for Immigration Studies, and the Southern Poverty Law Center-labeled hate group, the Federation for American Immigration Reform.

Roy Beck, who runs NumbersUSA and was once deemed Tanton's “heir apparent”, has a similar anti-immigrant track record. Beck worked as an editor at The Social Contract alongside Wayne Lutton, an active member of "both racist and Holocaust denial circles," and helped edit a book by Tanton and Lutton.  In 1996, Beck addressed a meeting of the Council of Conservative Citizens, a white supremacist group. 

Recently, Mario H. Lopez, president of the conservative Hispanic Leadership Fund, published a piece in The Human Life Review detailing the work of the anti-immigrant movement and its viewpoints on population control and the environment -- a major reason Beck supports immigration restrictions. Lopez explained the movement's negative impact on the immigration debate, demanding that people “denounce CIS, FAIR, NumbersUSA, and any other entities that advance the dark cause of population control.” This call was echoed by Alfonso Aguilar, executive director of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles, who noted, “If these groups can be unmasked, then the bulk of the opposition to immigration reform on the conservative side will wither away.”

Prominent conservatives such as Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Grover Norquist have pushed back against these groups' influence during the immigration debate. Rubio's aides brought Lopez to a meeting of GOP Senate staffers where he passed out literature outlining how these groups have “hijacked concerns over immigration” to promote their “population-control movement” agenda.

Unfortunately, U.S. News -- following other mainstream media coverage of the immigration debate -- failed to report this background. Instead, the article cites CIS' Mark Krikorian to bolster NumbersUSA's argument.  The only criticism of these groups in the entire article is in the last two paragraphs from Brad Bailey, founder of Texas Immigration Solutions, who said that the anti-immigration rhetoric of “some of these radical groups” is a “political loser” -- a far cry from exposing these groups' true agenda.