Tancredo's one-track mind

Even when questioning Gen. Petraeus, at least one Republican would rather talk about illegal immigration than the war in Iraq.

Published April 10, 2008 12:46AM (EDT)

Today's House hearings with Gen. David Petraeus and Amb. Ryan Crocker didn't generate quite as much attention as yesterday's theatrics in the Senate, and in a way, that's a shame. A lot of people missed out on the unique questions that only Tom Tancredo could ask.

Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.) is absolutely obsessed with illegal immigration, so much so that he ran for president on that issue. That didn't work out, but he is still obsessed with tracking down illegal aliens everywhere.

Tancredo, shockingly, even worked into today's hearing on Iraq. Tancredo said he had read media reports that illegal aliens who were gang members from groups like MS-13, joined the Army, served in Iraq, and then returned home "using military tactics in order to advance their own lawless activities here."

Petraeus responded that he "was not aware of a problem with gangs" inside the Army or military services and said he would look into the matter.

Tancredo then pressed Crocker over the fact that Iraq will not accept the return of Iraqi citizens deported from the United States. Crocker said he hadn't heard of that issue either.

If every sentence uttered by Rudy Giuliani featured a noun, a verb, and "9/11," Tancredo is well on his way to similar notoriety, replacing 9/11 with "illegal immigration."

By Steve Benen

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