Corrupt San Bernardino County Sabotaging Illegal Immigration Initiative

Our effort to ban illegal aliens from attending public schools suffered a setback after the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters, a Democrat operative, ruled that we cannot move forward with our initiative.

The American Children First Initiative was filed on April 3.

Not only would it prohibit illegal aliens from attending public schools in the Yucaipa-Calimesa Joint Unified School District, it would require illegal alien parents to pay a non-resident tuition to enroll their American citizen children.


San Bernardino County and and its elected officials have long been plagued by corruption and a tendency to manipulate and interpret the law so as to fit their agenda. And this letter written by Michael Scarpello, the San Bernardino County Registrar, follows that pattern. Click here to view the letter.

The Redlands Daily Facts reported in 2011 when he was first appointed to the position that "Scarpello worked as a lawyer for First Data Corp., then segued into a political campaign, where he worked in 1998 for the Democratic candidate for governor of Nebraska, Bill Hoppner, who lost."

The letter provides two arguments as to why they refuse to provide American Children First with a ballot title and summary for our initiative:

  1. ​We are only allowed to file initiatives on tax issues/measures
  2. The state has preempted the field when it comes to local schools and determining who can and cannot enroll

Lies & Opinions

It is important to state clearly that this letter is filled with lies and opinions and does not in any way cite any part of the California Constitution or any of its state codes to support its arguments.

Let's address the first point about tax measures.

If the people can only file initiatives concerning tax measures, why does the California Education Code in Division 3 of Title 2 expressly state in Section 35107(c) that the people can place term limit initiatives on the ballot? It reads:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the governing board of a school district may adopt or the residents of the school district may propose, by initiative, a proposal to limit or repeal a limit on the number of terms a member of the governing board of the school district may serve on the governing board of the school district.

​It took me two seconds to easily refute the lies put forth by the county elections official.

The second point about state preemption lacks any reference to any state code or legal opinion and is merely an opinion. It is not the place of the elections official to determine whether or not the subject matter of an initiative is legal or constitutional. That is for the courts to decide after opponents have filed a lawsuit of some kind.

​Political Corruption

​This is a classic example of political corruption and game playing by government officials who want to selectively interpret our laws to advance their agenda. San Bernardino County does not want to be "Ground Zero" in the debate on whether or not American taxpayers should be forced to educate illegal aliens at the expense of their own children.

And because they are the government authority, they realize that they have much of the power and leverage in this equation. They would rather see our organization spend thousands of dollars on a lawsuit because they are hoping that we either lack the funds or would prefer to not divert the funds away from other projects towards a costly legal case.

What's Next?​

So, what are our options?

Well, there are legal and political options.​

American Children First has reached out to the Federation for American Immigration Reform to see if they can assist us by filing a lawsuit on our behalf. We have also reached out to a couple of other resources to see if they might be able to lend a helping hand on the legal side. We hope to have something more concrete to report on this front in the next couple of weeks.​

Of course, there are several political options.

One option would be a citizen led effort to mount a recall of these board members. The community could then run a slate of candidates who are opposed to illegal immigration and willing to change board policies regarding admission requirements. This board action would be immediately challenged and set up an eventual showdown with the United States Supreme Court because it would conflict with the 1982 Plyler v Doe decision.

Another option would be to file illegal immigration initiatives with the cities of Yucaipa and Calimesa. Previously, I authored the Illegal Immigration Relief Act for the City of San Bernardino in 2005. One of the provisions of that initiative included requirements placed on landlords prohibiting them from renting their properties to illegal aliens.

I believe we can revisit this issue and work to circumvent Plyler v Doe utilizing the city initiative process.

Finally, regardless of each option listed above, we must continue to lobby members of Congress to re-introduce the 1996 Elton Gallegly Amendment. And we must continue to reach out to school board members in other states to encourage them to take up the "Plyler v Doe Must Go" banner.​

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Joseph Turner

Joseph Turner is the founder and executive director for American Children First. He is a nationalist hardliner on illegal immigration issues and considered one of the foremost visionary and strategic thinkers in the movement. Previously, he founded the California-based anti-illegal immigration group Save Our State in 2004. He also authored the Illegal Immigration Relief Act (IIRA) in 2005 which served as the model blueprint for dozens of other cities, most notably Hazleton (PA) and Farmers Branch (TX). The IIRA is believed to have represented the first ever attempt to use the local initiative process to combat illegal immigration in the United States.

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Joseph Turner
Founder, American Children First

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