In the scarcity of news that often plagues cable networks in August, Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., tried to keep his name on the radar with some notable appearances on national TV, including a spat last week with Geraldo Rivera over immigration and applause at the departure of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
In an interview with Tucker Carlson on MSNBC, Tancredo celebrated Monday’s announcement about Gonzales, reminding viewers that he had previously called for Gonzales to resign, but not because of his firing of U.S. Attorneys or his wireless wiretapping efforts. He had denounced Gonzales for failing to enforce immigration laws and prosecuting border patrol agents.
The mission of the U.S. Border Patrol also came under scrutiny this week when Carlos X. Carrillo, the border patrol chief of Laredo, Texas said his job is to prevent terrorists from entering the country, not to stop illegal immigrants or narcotics. Tancredo shot back, calling for Carrillo’s resignation and questioning how he could distinguish a terrorist from other border-crossers.
Tancredo’s appearance on Fox’s Hannity and Colmes late last week resulted in a shouting match between Tancredo and Geraldo Rivera over the role of sanctuary cities in the slayings of three college students in Newark, N.J. — a cause Tancredo has championed because the suspected ringleader was an illegal immigrant. While Rivera said that the crime had nothing to do with illegal immigration, Tancredo insisted the three students would still be alive if the city of Newark had cooperated with federal immigration officials:
There were moments of civility, however, with Rivera crediting Tancredo for influencing the immigration debate among Republican presidential hopefuls. Rivera also predicted that immigration will be “the seminal issue of the ‘08 presidential race.”
The campaign has planned another trip to New Hampshire, with a stop in Londonderry on Tuesday, Durham on Wednesday, and Manchester and Merrimack on Thursday. The following week, Tancredo is expected to take his campaign to Oklahoma for fundraisers in Tulsa and Oklahoma City.