Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) had a lighthearted moment during a radio interview last week when he suggested to the host that he should have personally arrested a 21-year-old girl, Ana Zamora, because she is an undocumented immigrant.
Zamora, a senior at Northwood University who will soon be the first in her family to graduate from college, was brought to the United States by her parents when she was an infant. She worked on the side to help put herself through college and wants to go into real estate after she graduates.
As a beneficiary of President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, which protects so-called “DREAMers” who came to the United States as children from deportation, Zamora was invited to be a guest of Michelle Obama’s at last week’s State of the Union.
But when Congressman Brooks was asked about her presence, rather than praising her accomplishments, he argued that she is a “problem” and should have been arrested.
Brooks discussed the matter with radio host Dale Jackson, who called Zamora’s presence “just an absolute slap in the face to everyone who’s ever lost a job by an illegal alien, everyone who’s ever lost a loved one to an illegal alien that shouldn’t even be here.”
Brooks responded, half-jokingly: “I was a little bit disappointed in you in that regard. You were sitting pretty close to the First Lady’s box. You could’ve walked right over and had a citizen’s arrest and taken care of that problem, right? [Laughter]”
Listen to it:
This isn’t the first time Brooks has had harsh words for immigrants. In 2011, shortly after entering Congress, Brooks assured constituents “that I have an intensity on this subject that we have to address the illegal alien issue.” He went on to say that “As your congressman on the House floor, I will do anything short of shooting them.”
And Brooks wasn’t the only House Republican to attack Zamora. Rep. Steve King (R-IA), the leading anti-immigrant voice in the House, lambasted Obama for inviting a “deportable” to the speech.