Young People and Students

Governor Dean Writes a Letter

Posted by on September 12, 2006 at 05:36 PM

College Republicans are at it again, this time with some help from the RNC:

Morgan Wilkins, the intern hired by the Republican National Committee to win the hearts and minds of Michigan 20-somethings, is planning events that some may find odd. To others, they may be offensive.

One such idea is "Catch an Illegal Immigrant Day," in which a volunteer would play the part of an illegal immigrant and hide somewhere on campus while others try to find him. The winner would receive a prize.

Her other ideas include an event called "Fun with Guns," in which young Republicans would use a BB gun or paintball gun to shoot cardboard cut-outs of Democratic leaders such as Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.)

Well this isn't the first time College Republicans have used such hate-filled tactics to try and win the hearts and minds of their peers. They've tried to do it before, at Penn State and at the University of Texas, and we think it has got to stop. So does Governor Dean, and today, he wrote a letter Republican National Committee Chairman, Ken Mehlman, telling him so.

The letter was hand delivered by James, a senior at Iona College and an intern for the DNC's American Majority Partnership (The AMP is a division of the Chairman's office which coordinates constituency-related activities across all DNC departments).

James, on his way to deliver the Governor's letter.

Signing in the letter

Read Governor Dean's full letter, below.

Ken Mehlman, Chairman Republican National Committee 310 First Street, SE Washington, D.C. 20003

September 12, 2006

Dear Ken,

A troubling article today reported that a Republican National Committee-hired intern is planning events that can only be described as divisive, potentially dangerous, and discriminatory to promote the Republican Party's agenda at the University of Michigan.

Promoting "Catch an Illegal Immigrant Day," which has been used by the Republican Party in other states including Pennsylvania and Texas, is not only offensive, it promotes discrimination for political gain. And an event titled "Fun with Guns" that encourages young Republicans to shoot cardboard cut-outs of Democratic leaders further promotes intolerance and violence. These un-American activities cannot go unchallenged.

We'd read that the RNC would use its funds to engage in negative campaigning in a desperate attempt to hold on to power and mobilize Republican voters in November, but these un-American attacks and violent, inflammatory campaign tactics are beyond the pale. As Chairmen of America's two major political parties, we have a responsibility to elevate the political discourse in America. Whether this is directly an RNC funded activity or not, I ask that you not only order such events ceased but also denounce these types of campaign tactics that breed only hatred, division and fear.

You said yourself to a gathering of Hispanic elected officials that America is a "nation of immigrants.a nation united by ideas, not race, creed or place of origin." That same day you also acknowledged that "we are all held to account by a common rule of law," and that "respect for this basic concept is critical to an America where we are all treated the same." To demonstrate your commitment to these words and ideals you must immediately act to have these desperate, inappropriate attacks stopped. America's democracy can only continue to work if we respect each other, and uphold the values that have made our country great. I hope to hear back from you on this important matter promptly.

Best regards,

Howard Dean, Chairman
Democratic National Committee

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