Almost 100 people protested against Mitt Romney’s extreme immigration policies outside of a campaign fundraiser the GOP presidential candidate attended at The Club, a private dining club in Birmingham, Alabama. The exclusive, 60-year-old restaurant requires a membership, and applicants must be sponsored by a current member and provide a picture with their application. Attendees at the Romney fundraiser paid as much as $25,000 to share dinner with Romney.
Before the event’s attendees reached the fundraiser, they passed the mostly Hispanic crowd chanting outside of the exclusive restaurant’s gates:
When Romney drove by at 4:45 p.m. only a handful of protestors had gathered and the candidate did not stop, but by 5:15 local protestors and a charter bus load from Decatur had arrived. They called out “No Papers, No Fear” and “Education not Deportation.”
The protest rally preceding Romney’s event was organized by the Immigrant Youth Leadership Initiative of Alabama and was held because Wednesday was the first day that undocumented immigrant youth brought to this country by their parents could apply for Deferred Action from deportation, an Obama administration policy that will allow such youth to obtain permits and work legally in the the U.S.
Romney still has refused to say if he would undo President Obama’s immigration directive protecting DREAM Act-eligible young adults from deportation, although a co-chair of his campaign said Romney would “rescind” the policy. During the GOP primary, Romney often staked out the most extreme immigration positions of any one of the GOP candidates, and his immigration advisers include the anti-immigrant official who wrote Alabama and Arizona’s immigration laws.