A 9/11 Family Member Confronts Sen. McCain [R-AZ] On Immigration Control
I first met
Bruce DeCell in December 2002. Peter Brimelow and I
had gathered in New York with stunned
9/11 family members. DeCell is a retired New York
police officer whose son-in-law,
Mark Petrocelli, was
killed at the
World Trade Center.
Incredulous at the extent of immigration abuses, the
group would soon form
9/11 Families for a Secure America.
DeCell has more reason than most to
rejoice that at the
stunning victory of Proposition 200—the heroic
grass-roots Arizona effort to stop illegal aliens
voting in elections etc.
In one of life`s curious twists,
DeCell had a chance
October 20th encounter on a New York-bound
Metroliner with one of Prop 200`s most
vocal and powerful foes, Arizona Senator
As DeCell recounted the incident to me, he had been in
Washington DC to attend the House-Senate Conference
Committee meeting to support the immigration provisions
recommended by the
9/11 Commission and written into H.R. 10.
On his way home DeCell, to his great surprise, found
himself sitting across from McCain, one of the driving
forces behind S.2845—the Senate bill that
attempted to strip most of the immigration safety
measures from H. R. 10. (The stronger version eventually
prevailed—another significant victory for immigration
Eventually, DeCell introduced himself to McCain as a
9/11 FSA member. Sensing early where their conversation
was headed, McCain cut DeCell off by insisting that
H.R. 10 would never pass because it contained
provisions not in the
9/11 Commission`s report.
"McCain`s eyes glazed over as soon as I mentioned
H.R. 10," recalled DeCell.
But DeCell was not put off. He challenged McCain to
compare the Commission`s report—which he had with
him—with H.R. 10. McCain refused.
Again, DeCell pressed McCain. DeCell pointed out that
that S.2845 does not address the need for tighter border
McCain insisted—"three or four times,"
according to DeCell—that the Senate version would provide
As for illegal aliens, McCain was adamant that they
come only to work at jobs
Americans will not take.
For emphasis, Mc Cain added that in his opinion OTM`s
(Other Than Mexicans) crossing into America from Mexico
no security threat.
Growing increasingly frustrated, DeCell told McCain
that S. 2845 failed adequately to address the threat of
driver`s licenses given to illegal aliens. The 9/11
Commission had emphasized the
ease with which terrorists obtained driver`s licenses
prior to the attacks.
McCain advised DeCell that he had written the driver`s
license language in the Senate bill. Then, he abruptly
ended their conversation.
When the train pulled into the station McCain rose
from his seat and turned to DeCell.
"Good-bye. It was nice meeting you," he said.
Replied De Cell: "Shame on you, Senator."
Just a few days later, McCain shifted his focus from
gutting H.R. 10 to going on the warpath against Prop 200.
On October 24th, the Arizona Republic
published McCain`s Op-ed titled
"Prop 200 Less than Worthless to Arizona,"
continuing his assault on the truth about illegal
Shamelessly describing himself as the "leader"
in the "search for solutions" to illegal
immigration, Mc Cain complained that Prop 200 would be a
costly nuisance to enforce. McCain`s answer to illegal
immigration crisis is—naturally—amnesty!
Just prior to Election Day, DeCell traveled to Arizona
to make radio and television appearances in support of
When the final votes were tallied, I asked DeCell if
he felt any special sense of vindication that he had
contributed to the victory of Prop 200 and had in the
also prevailed over McCain, the
Wall Street Journal, the Chamber of Commerce,
Hispanic advocacy groups and the Arizona Republic.
"The Arizona voters have
sent a clear message that they are disgusted with illegal
aliens ruining the state."
But he went on:
"I can`t believe that
people vote for McCain. Illegal aliens have made a
shambles out of Arizona."
(McCain was re-elected with 77 percent of the vote
over his Democratic opponent, Stuart Starkey, an eighth
grade mathematics teacher.)
Continuing, DeCell said,
"As I traveled around, I
ranchers who reported that over the last few years
caught 9,000 aliens and seized two to three tons of
drugs. In Phoenix, all the money transfer stations
bulletproof booths. Aliens can get their photos for
matricula consular cards right next to the Mexican
consulate office. In ten minutes, we saw about 20 people
go into the consulate with their pictures in hand."
Finally, DeCell said that as far as McCain and other
Congressional open borders enthusiasts, he considers
them all "creeps."
Looking back on his train ride with McCain, De Cell
minced no words:
"I don`t care if they are
rude to me or not. When I get the chance to confront
them, I`m not going to pull any punches."
The Prop 200 victory is the biggest triumph grassroots
Americans have enjoyed since California`s Proposition
187. Immigration reform is coming to America—even if John
McCain won`t get on the train.
Joe Guzzardi [email
him], an instructor in English at the Lodi
Adult School, has been writing a weekly newspaper column
since 1988. This column is exclusive to VDARE.COM.