This is a partial transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," August 17, 2006, that has been edited for clarity.
SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: A Chicago church is now the focal point of the national debate over immigration. Thirty-one-year-old Elvira Arellano, who is an illegal Mexican immigrant, took refuge inside a United Methodist church with her son, rather than face deportation.
Joining us now, the church's pastor, Walter Coleman. And executive director of Centro Sin Fronteras, which is an immigrant rights group, Emma Lozano is with us.
Pastor, let me first begin with you. She's in this country illegally. She didn't respect the American laws of sovereignty. Is that correct, sir?
WALTER COLEMAN, PASTOR, ADALBERTO UNITED METHODIST: Good evening, how are you?
HANNITY: I'm good, sir.
COLEMAN: OK. Elvira has been a member of my congregation for three years. And she is one of 12 million people that crossed the border without papers and were invited by U.S. companies to work for them and to pay taxes.
HANNITY: Pastor, wait a minute. Wait a minute. You know what? You can make all these excuses. I asked you a very simple question. She was not invited to come. She entered this country freely, illegally. She didn't respect America's laws or America's sovereignty. Isn't that true, sir?
COLEMAN: She walked through a turnstile, because she knew there was work here.
COLEMAN: And as soon as she got here she was invited to work. And she was given work and she paid taxes. And she...
HANNITY: And she broke the law.
COLEMAN: ... has done that nine years.
HANNITY: And now, rather than face the consequences of the law, you are helping her and assisting her and abetting her in her future breaking of the law, aren't you?
COLEMAN: I want to talk about that. But first, let me say this — that everybody in this country has broken that law. Every company that hired somebody...
HANNITY: That's not true, sir. Sir, that's not true.
COLEMAN: It absolutely is.
HANNITY: Hang on. Let me go to Emma. Emma, look, I understand...
COLEMAN: No, no, you're going to listen to me now.
HANNITY: No, no, no, no. I'm going to finish my question.
COLEMAN: The bank broke the law. Every company broke the law. The IRS broke the law when they took her taxes.
HANNITY: Sir let me correct you, with all due respect...
COLEMAN: She is the least culpable of all those people.
HANNITY: There are a lot of people that came to this country legally. A lot of people went through the process properly. A lot of people respect our borders, our laws, and our sovereignty.
Now, Emma, I have a question for you. You know what? I understand why she came here, Elvira did. I understand that she wants what we all take for granted. The problem is she did it illegally. And the problem is, is that you're asking and you're supporting her in her law breaking here.
While I have sympathy for her on a personal level, shouldn't she, now that she's broken the law, have to go back to where she came from?
EMMA LOZANO, CENTRO SIN FRONTERAS: You know, the president of the United States says that this law is broken and needs to be fixed. Right now there's a debate going on about fixing these laws. The Senate just passed a bill that would legalize nine million people. But at the same time they're ordering the deportation of the very same people that will be legalized when this bill is passed.
HANNITY: But the point of is, if she broke the law and she didn't respect — you seem to care not even in the least bit about American immigration laws.
LOZANO: The immigration law is broken. You need to understand that every year they invite immigrants to come in to pick the fields of produce. They don't have enough workers to pick the produce in the fields. And these people come to do that.
Now, what we want is justice. People that come here to work and pay taxes should be able to have the right to stay in this country and a pathway to citizenship.
ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: I understand. Emma, it's Alan Colmes. Pastor Coleman, welcome. I'm very conflicted about this, pastor, because I understand that she was arrested, deported, re-entered illegally again, had a child here. The child is 7. On one side of the ledger.
On the other side of the ledger, this law renders families asunder. And it causes families to be split, and that is really what the issue is here, Pastor. It's a bad law. Go ahead, sir.
COLEMAN: And when she came to us and after she had really exhausted all other possibilities, she said, look, I can run and hide. I can go and start all over again in another state and change my name. But I want my son to know that he's a child of God and should be respected.
And so she decided to take a position of conscience and protest what we think is the law that is dividing families.
COLMES: And this law, which split up her family. But legally at the same time, Pastor Coleman, you can't use a church to evade the law, correct?
COLEMAN: Well, let me tell you what we're doing. We feel that she's really not a fugitive, because she's informed them formally where she is, and obviously, she's told everybody in America where she is. And she is not running from anybody. She's not looking for the one-armed man.
What she's doing is an act of civil disobedience to protest a law that is inhumane, that separates families, that takes a child that's 7 1/2 years old, who's a U.S. citizen. She's doing this out of conscience and out of her faith.
COLMES: Keeping her family together.
COLEMAN: In her particular case, I think it's very important.
COLEMAN: Because of the principle that she's been fighting on and the principled way and the faithful way she's been fighting openly on this issue and organizing people on the issue of family units...
COLMES: Let me jump back in here, Pastor...
COLEMAN: Two private bills have been introduced in Congress.
COLMES: Pastor, let me get back in here in a second. I know you're very passionate about this. Emma, the irony here is that if George W. Bush has his way and there is the McCain-Kennedy bill and there's a pathway for people like Emma, this would be a moot point long enough from now. If we were to wait, we might find out that she would be granted a pathway — maybe that's not the right word, but a pathway to citizenship, right?
COLEMAN: That's right.
LOZANO: That's public opinion. Seventy-eight percent of all America is saying do not separate these families, because they're our neighbors. They're the people in our churches. They're already here, and they have nothing absolutely to do with the terrorist acts that happened with the Twin Towers or the Pentagon. So we need to give them an opportunity to stay here.
Elvira has a message. What would you do if they wanted you to leave your child behind? She can't do that. So she chose to stand up. Similarly what Rosa Parks did, from not getting up anymore to give her seat to someone. And she's saying this is wrong, fix it. And everybody's trying to fix it. So why deport her now?
HANNITY: She was deported, Emma. Wait a minute. She was deported. She came back to the country...
LOZANO: Why should she be deported when she would be eligible for legalization in a matter of months? Why would you do that? It's unbelievable to us that you would be that vindictive and...
HANNITY: Not vindictiveness. It was nothing — she didn't respect American laws on multiple occasions here.
LOZANO: Laws are supposed to create order, not chaos.
HANNITY: Thank you both for being with us.
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