Plan would start with $5 million, then double funding
Tens of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars soon could be flowing into the National Council of La Raza, an organization that advocates for civil rights for Hispanics and has connections to groups that advocate the separation of several southwestern states from the rest of the nation.
The proposal has been made by U.S. Rep. Ruben Hinojosa, and it would give the organization that describes itself as "the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States – [working] to improve opportunities for Hispanic Americans" $5 million annually starting in 2008, with the funding to double the next year and then continue at that level "for each fiscal year thereafter."
As WND reported earlier, La Raza was condemned last year by Rep. Charles Norwood, R-Ga., as a radical "pro-illegal immigration lobbying organization that supports racist groups calling for the secession of the western United States as a Hispanic-only homeland."
Norwood has called on La Raza to renounce its support of the Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan – which sees "The Race" as part of an ethnic group that one day will reclaim Aztlan, the mythical birthplace of the Aztecs. In Chicano folklore, Aztlan includes California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and parts of Colorado and Texas.
The new plan, H.R. 1999, was introduced in April and already has been referred to a committee for action.
The attempt to divert federal funding is being publicized by several groups, including Americans for Legal Immigration Political Action Committee as well as The Federal Observer.
"Contact your HOUSE MEMBER to vote against this American largess for organizations working for the benefit of foreign nations," the websites said.
The legislation specifically authorizes money "for assistance for the National Council of La Raza and the Raza Development Fund."
"This Act may be cited as the 'Hope Fund Act of 2007,'" the legislation said. It calls for the money to be used for "community development" as well as "affordable housing" for neighborhoods "of Hispanic origin."
The organization's latest available financial report confirms that it already gets $5 million a year in federal grants, and nearly another $14 million a year in other grants, making up a majority of its $30 million annual budget. The future $10 million annual grants would provide a substantial boost to its budget.
The legislation allows the money to be spent by the National Council of La Raza or its development fund and leaves the door open for funding "such other activities as may be determined by the Secretary and the National Council of La Raza."