Thursday, November 30, 2006

CNN Lou Dobbs - video:ACLU and Anonymous Donors Prepared to Kill Off Entire Towns with Hefty WarchestCities and towns that have passed measures aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration are facing big challenges, bigger than many realized at first. Well-funded groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union are challenging those measures in court, forcing small towns to find ways in which to raise money to fight those challenges by activist groups. Richly-endowed groups like the American Civil Liberties Union are taking the cities to court, challenging the ordinances that those cities and others like them are proving. It's become a fight of the Davids versus the Goliaths. Mayor Lou Barletta in Hazleton, Pennsylvania said: "Unfortunately, the cost of attorneys' fees can be very substantial, particularly if the case goes to trial. I think it's very reasonable to assume a minimum of $100,000, and likely as much as $2 million or $3 million." The three groups most active in challenging the cities laws are the ACLU, the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, and the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund. The combined assets of those groups, $270 million, with undisclosed pro bono legal help available for member law firms. And while the towns have to answer to taxpayers, those groups have to answer to donors who usually remain anonymous. And there is a financial incentive for these groups to challenge the laws. Win or lose, their legal fees are usually included in the settlement.