Anti-Immigrant Activists in D.C. Exurbs Undaunted

The anti-immigrant sentiment that swept across the country in 2006—leaving in its wake hard-line activist groups and anti-immigrant ordinances in a handful of localities—seemed to hit the wealthy Northern Virginia exurbs a year late. But efforts by Virginia’s Republican Party to ride the anti-immigrant wave to last month’s off-year elections did not pan out, as the party lost control of the state Senate. Nevertheless, the suburban vigilantes persist, and they’re now forming a statewide lobbying group and political action committee:

Greg Letiecq, president of the group Help Save Manassas and a co-founder of Save the Old Dominion, said … “What is missing is the engagement of regular citizens in legislative process[.] The only people who showed up last year [to lobby the General Assembly] was the illegal alien lobby.” …

Corey A. Stewart, chairman of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors, has said the grass-roots efforts of Help Save Manassas were instrumental in drumming up support for a resolution adopted by county officials on July 10 that restricts public services for illegal aliens. Mr. Letiecq said organizers hope to replicate their success on a statewide level.

“Hopefully, we can do that in Richmond and make sure they are listening to citizens as much as special interests,” he said.

Unfortunately for Stewart, the Prince William County supervisor, he’s also finding out that his immigrant-fighting plan is going to cost a fortune and require a property-tax hike. (Via Ryan Avent.)