In a new ad, State Representative David Stringer is doubling down on his inflammatory statements about immigration and demographic change as he campaigns for a second term.
“The truth is that too much of a good thing can be a bad thing," the Republican lawmaker says of immigration in the 60-second radio spot.
"Adding new people to our country faster than they can be assimilated is bad for us, and bad for the new arrivals," Stringer continues. "It creates a permanent underclass and traps people in poverty."
The Republican from Prescott faced calls for his resignation this summer after a video surfaced of Stringer's racist remarks made at the Yavapai County Republican Men's Forum on June 11.
At the forum, Stringer said that "there aren't enough white kids to go around" in Arizona schools. "Immigration today represents an existential threat to the United States," he added, describing an increasingly diverse country as "politically destabilizing."
In the ad, Stringer frames himself as the victim of liberal attacks merely for speaking the truth about immigration. And he restates the core of his comments from the June forum, reiterating that he's not a racist.
"These days, the establishment swamp in Phoenix is spending tens of thousands of dollars to try to punish me for saying out loud that too much immigration is bad for America," Stringer says in the ad. "That's hardly a new idea, but every group out there that wants amnesty and unlimited immigration is claiming that I'm a racist just for speaking the truth."
Republicans from Governor Doug Ducey to Arizona GOP Chairman Jonathan Lines called on Stringer to step down after Phoenix New Times and other news outlets across the country covered his remarks earlier this summer.
Stringer "disqualified himself," Ducey said at the time.
“These words have no place in our party, or in our state," Lines said in a statement.
Yet Stringer forges on, one of several disgraced Arizona politicians angling to maintain their grip on power in the face of scandal and baggage.
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Stringer and fellow incumbent Representative Noel Campbell face challenger Jodi Rooney in the upcoming August 28 primary. Only two candidates will move on to the general election.
At the height of the firestorm, Stringer went to the south Phoenix staple Lo-Lo's Chicken & Waffles to offer something of a non-apology, accompanied by the polarizing activist Rev. Jarrett Maupin.
At the restaurant, Stringer told the cameras, "If there are people in this room who were offended, I am going to apologize for making statements that allowed someone else to excerpt them, misrepresent them to the community."
Stringer's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.