Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota, has taken heat in recent weeks for sponsoring a bill targeting so-called “sanctuary cities” following extensive consultation with one hardline anti-immigration group, and reliance on “research” produced by another.
There is plenty wrong with this situation, including that these groups have a vision of immigration policy that runs directly opposed to bedrock conservative principles.
Given that, it is easy to see what one criticism that has gone unnoticed among Gruters’ liberal critics -- and, indeed, among Florida media -- is that these groups are not merely tainted by associations with legitimately racist individuals with an unhealthy and creepy interest in eugenics. It is that these groups were founded, funded, and remain heavily influenced by actual proponents of authoritarian government control over population, honest-to-God infanticide, forced sterilization of women, and China’s erstwhile one-child policy.
The News Service of Florida reports that Gruters “worked with” the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in drafting the bill. Gruters also relied on information from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) in a staff analysis of the bill. CIS is an offshoot of FAIR -- a fact they’ve often gone to some length to hide. And FAIR’s promotion of anti-immigrant hysteria has been financed, facilitated and undertaken by leftists with absolute disdain for pro-life values that both the Republican voter and donor bases -- including, presumably, a lot of Gruters’ own constituents -- hold dear.
FAIR was founded and originally funded by Dr. James Tanton, a retired doctor from Michigan. According to the Wall Street Journal, “appropriate population-control measures for Dr. Tanton and his network include promoting China's one-child policy, sterilizing Third World women and wider use of RU-486.” RU-486 is the drug that induces abortion.
FAIR also reportedly has a $400 million funding line in the form of the Colcom Foundation, the deathbed charitable endeavor of late heiress and avid population-controller, Cordelia Scaife May. As of 2013, it was reported that May had “provid[ed] more than $76 million over the last decade to groups that now are fighting to block immigration overhaul efforts.”
May said that her mother’s friend, abortion and eugenics proponent and Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger -- whose name is almost on a par with that of Lucifer in the pro-life community -- was the only source of “fun” in her childhood. Naturally, pro-lifers would argue that Sanger’s life work resulted in the opposite for millions of unborn American babies: pain, suffering, and ultimately death. Nonetheless, Sanger converted May, who saw fit to place a "’Stop the stork’ bumper sticker on her Mercedes.”
Now, May’s fortune finances FAIR’s efforts. Dan Stein, its president and executive director, has defended former FAIR Board Member Garrett Hardin, who opposed sending food aid to starving Ethiopians because it would "encourage population growth" and who once favorably commented that "in all societies practicing infanticide ... the child is killed within minutes after birth, before bonding can occur." In Stein’s view, this was apparently defensible because Hardin never supported "involuntary, coercive infanticide.” Left unexplained is how exactly a newborn baby could consent to its own actual killing.
Stein has also defended forced abortions and sterilizations under China’s one-child population control policies as mere aspects of an "international family-planning program." Perhaps this should not be a surprise given the sheer volume of individuals with links to Planned Parenthood currently or formerly on FAIR’s board.
Gruters may have been unaware of FAIR and CIS’ anti-conservative history and problematic connections, but that should not suggest his pro-life constituents or donors do not or would not care about him relying on these groups for policy advice. Regardless, now that he is aware, it is time for him to stop his elevation of, and reliance on, such advice.
The Republican Party, fundamentally, is the dominant political party in the American system advocating for the right to life of all people -- born, unborn, chronically or terminally ill, disabled, American, and foreign-born. That is a long-standing principle highlighted in its platform, acclaimed by leaders like President Ronald Reagan, and one that Gruters would do well to bear in mind if he wishes to continue to serve as a standard bearer for the GOP in the Sunshine State.
Mario H. Lopez is the author of “Highjacking Immigration,” an article that first ran in pro-life journal Human Life Review and exposed connections among anti-immigrant groups. He leads a conservative advocacy organization.