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Immigrant children "pawns" in political struggle

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Immigrant children "pawns" in political struggle

By Simone Del Rosario. CREATED Jul 19, 2014

ORACLE, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - The nation is speaking out against the rush of undocumented immigrants into the U.S., and Southern Arizona is no exception. 

Protests, like the one held earlier this week in Oracle, were duplicated across the country on a "national day of protest."

The goal: To turn the tide on immigration and turn away buses full of immigrants, even unaccompanied children. 

But there was no sign of buses in Oracle on Saturday. Still, the group of protestors is far from standing down. Bus or not, they told 9OYS they will continue to rally while others in the community are begging them to stop.

From sea to shining sea -- California to Texas to North Carolina -- Americans protested the busloads of immigrants coming into their communities. 

"We would stop the bus only to force the government to sit down and talk to us," said protest organizer Bob Skiba, longtime Oracle resident.

But several Oracle residents tell 9OYS these actions come at the expense of children and make Oracle seem like an unwelcoming community. 

Some people even hung welcome signs in case these unaccompanied children travel down Mt. Lemmon Road. 

Leading the charge at the rallies, however, Skiba said after several unanswered calls and emails to government agencies, this is his only option. 

"The kids are just pawns in this whole political struggle across the width and breadth of the United States of America," Skiba said. 

He said they will continue to protest what they say is a lack of transparency from the government -- continue to rise up until the government speaks up.

Simone Del Rosario

Simone Del Rosario

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Simone is the KGUN 9 On Your Side resident cowgirl. She has spent most of her life on the back of a horse, and spent all of her high school and college years traveling from rodeo to rodeo with her horses and her dog, Roper.