Activists confront King on immigration - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Activists confront King on immigration

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It starts with an introduction.

"I'm actually a DREAMer myself," Erika Andiola tells U.S. Rep. Steve King. "I'm originally from Mexico, but I was raised here."

The term DREAMers comes from the much-discussed DREAM Act, and a 2012 Executive Order, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which allows children brought into the country illegally when they were young apply for college scholarships and work permits. The House of Representatives recently voted to repeal the law.

In the video, released by the DREAM Action Coalition, the conversation between activists Andiola & Cesar Vargas and King quickly becomes heated.

"Please stop a minute," King said to Andiola. "You're very good at English."

"I was raised here in the United States," she replied.

"Right, so don't act like you don't understand English," King said.

The two express frustration with King for his opposition of DACA. Andiola tries to hand him here DACA ID card to rip up. They also mentioned previous name-calling, likely a reference to King's comments that many DREAMers are connected to illegal drug trafficking.

King said that's out of context.

"I spoke of drug smugglers, now you're not going to tell me you're one of them, are you?" he said.

"Do I look like a drug smuggler?" Andiola replied.

"It's alright, you can tell me," King said.

"I'm not a drug smugglers, of course I'm not," she said. "I graduated from Arizona State University ..."

"You're not going to tell me you're one of them, are you?" King asked.

The pair tell King they're looking for a path to citizenship, because they say the U.S. is their home now.

King said there presence in the country is a violation of federal law.

"It troubles me a great deal that you have such disrespect for the laws of the U.S.," he said.

"But this is my country," Vargas said.

"But you're telling me that you don't have to abide by the laws of this country," King said. " ... did you come from a lawless country? ... You came from a lawless country, do not import lawlessness into this country."

King office released a statement on the exchange late Tuesday.

"This situation perfectly illustrates the Leftist model of attack: personalize, polarize, distort facts, ambush, and prey on people's emotions," it read. "I'm willing to engage in thoughtful dialog whenever possible and I'm obligated to educate members of our society, legal or illegal. Iowans and Americans want border security and the Rule of Law. I will stand on those principles whether confronted by professional activists or Harvard lawyers."

View the full video on YouTube here.

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