Immigration reform protest held at Devin Nunes' Visalia office

The Fresno BeeMay 13, 2014 

From left, Rebecca Salgado, Louie Campos and Diane Koletzke were among immigration reform advocates who held a protest at the Visalia office of Rep. Devin Nunes on Tuesday, May 13, 2014. The crosses represent people who died in the Arizona desert trying to come to the United States, the protesters said.

LEWIS GRISWOLD — THE FRESNO BEE

Advocates of immigration reform staged a protest Tuesday at the Visalia office of Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Tulare, delivering 684 white crosses on Styrofoam blocks.

Each cross bore the name of a person who died crossing the desert in Arizona, organizers said.

"We are acting on behalf of those people," said Diane Koletzke of Visalia. "People are dying trying to get back to their families."

Organizer Louie Campos said those who died "were trying to build better lives for themselves in the United States."

About 25 to 30 people joined a brief rally organized by Tulare County 4 Families, which supports immigration reform and an end to deportations of undocumented immigrants.

Nunes called the protest "a political stunt" that was publicized by local Democrats.

Nunes said he supports comprehensive immigration reform that includes secure borders, a guest worker program for agriculture and immigration options for highly educated workers.

But because immigration has been politicized, reform legislation can't get through Congress, he said.

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6104, lgriswold@fresnobee.com or @fb_LewGriswold on Twitter.

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