Tempers flared during a city council meeting Monday in Huntington Park, California, when legal residents objected to the appointments of two illegal immigrants to its advisory board.
Huntington Park is between 95 and 97 percent Hispanic.
Some critics say city councilman Jhonny Pineda specifically appointed Frank Medina and Julian Zatarain because they worked on his campaign. Others say they don’t believe illegal immigrants should serve the government this way.
“We need to make sure that we bring everyone together to the table here in Huntington Park, so that we can make sure we’re sharing the same vision,” Pineda said.
“You are out of order!” one woman in the crowd yelled at the council members during the meeting on Monday. “This is the United States of America!”
Neil Cavuto had Democratic strategist Joe Lestingi on “Your World” Tuesday to discuss the controversy.
“This is a very bold move by the city council,” Lestingi gushed. “They actually recognize the fact that they have a large undocumented population within the Huntington Park area that has to be represented in some manner.”
“Why does it have to be represented?” Cavito asked pointedly. “It’s illegal. It shouldn’t be here. It’s illegal – they’re illegal.”
“I appreciate that,” the affable Dem strategist answered. “But we’re not going to get rid of them. That’s something most of us can agree on. The 12 million that are here are not going anywhere.”
Cavuto argued that because Medina and Zatarain are in the country illegally, they should not have rights, let alone positions on advisory boards in government.
“They are illegal. They are not citizens. They are not given the rights of US citizens – including serving on public boards that are generally available and provided exclusively for legal citizens of the United States.”
Lestingi countered that you don’t have to be a legal citizen to serve on these advisory committees. “97% of this community is Hispanic,” he added.
Cavuto exclaimed, “This is worse than sanctuary cities. Now we’re giving them sanctuary boards. You know this is crazy.”
Lestingi insisted that undocumented aliens should be able to “come out of the shadows” and have a voice in the community, which prompted Cavuto to suggest he might try doing the same thing.
“You know what, I’m going to go to Mexico – I’m going to visit Mexico and I’m gonna say, well I’ve been here awhile – I have some problems with some of the things in Mexico here – I want to be on an advisory board – just as a visiting resident. I think I should have a say in this…. They’d laugh me right out of there!” he exclaimed.
Lestingi just laughed and reiterated his point about helping illegals (who aren’t going anywhere) become productive members of society.