Pat Young: Suffolk Congressional Race Has Anti-Immigrant Overtones

Chris Cox is running hard against Congressman Tim Bishop in one of the few swing Congressional seats in New York. The First CD in eastern Suffolk County has changed hands repeatedly over the last several decades.
The district has a strong tea party faction organized around Glenn Beck’s 9/12 group. The faction incorporates many activists from the area’s well developed anti-immigrant organizations. The district was the scene of multiple attacks on Latino immigrants in 2007 and 2008, culminating in the killing of Marcelo Lucero in 2008.
Cox has announced he will “stand with the tea party” on the immigration issue. He recently released a statement praising Arizona’s SB 1070 law which was recently enjoined by a Federal court. Cox said:
“I know how hard so many people have fought to become citizens of this country, and I know that we need to secure our borders. That’s the obligation of the federal government and the federal government has failed. God Bless Arizona for standing up and trying to protect its citizens!”
After the law was stayed in July because of its dubious constitutionality, Cox said:
“The Arizona legislature passed common-sense legislation to protect their citizens because the Federal government has completely failed to secure our borders.  Along with Governor Jan Brewer…, I am deeply disappointed that a Federal judge has blocked key provisions of Arizona’s law.  The citizens of Arizona have been subjected to criminal aliens, including violent drug gangs, because our borders are porous.  As a Member of Congress, I will support legislation to strengthen border security and enforce Federal immigration laws.  Unlike Tim Bishop who wants to reward illegal immigrants with citizenship under what he calls ‘Earned Legalization,’ I support the rule of law and I oppose amnesty.”
Cox is an odd source of such a hard line. He is the grandson of disgraced former President Richard Nixon who was saved from jail by a presidential pardon, a sort of one-man amnesty.
Cox’s father, Ed cox, is the head of the state Republican party. Ed Cox led the failed effort to convince Republicans to nominate virulently anti-immigrant Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy for governor.