Tea Party Pol Mistakes YMCA Campers for Immigrants

Adam Kwasman said he saw 'fear' on kids' faces as bus pulled up at protest
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2014 2:03 PM CDT

Well, this is embarrassing. Adam Kwasman, an Arizona state rep and Tea Party member who’s vying for a Republican congressional seat, joined an immigration-related protest Tuesday in the town of Oracle. He was there to protest against a local academy that plans on housing Central American immigrant children who’ve come unaccompanied across the border, but instead he got himself involved in a pretty significant mix-up, reports the Los Angeles Times. As a bus rolled up to the scene, Kwasman tweeted, “Bus coming in. This is not compassion. This is the abrogation of the rule of law.” (The tweet, which was accompanied by a photo of said bus, has since been deleted, but you can view a screen shot of it on Politwoops.) Except, er, the bus didn’t contain the immigrant children he thought it did.

Kwasman also told 12 News KPNX that he could see “the fear” on the kids’ faces ... but the bus was filled with YMCA summer campers from a nearby school district, and according to one 12 News staffer who spotted them, they were actually laughing and taking pictures of the protest with their cellphones. When a 12 News reporter confronted Kwasman and said, “You know that was a bus with YMCA kids?” Kwasman replied, "They were sad, too," before ultimately apologizing. He continued his apology on Twitter later that afternoon, posting, “I apologize for the confusion. That was my error” and “Last tweet not the bus of illegal immigrant children. Thank God.” The Times notes that the Oracle protest was partly inspired by a July 1 protest in California that forced three buses of undocumented immigrants to turn around. (More Central American immigrant children stories.)

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