Comedian sarcastically Testifies before US congress on Immigration Issue

American political satirist, writer, comedian and television host Stephen Colbert has appeared before a Congress committee discussing immigrant farm workers. He appeared in character as the conservative commentator he plays on his show on Comedy Central.

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It is said that House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers asked Colbert to leave before his testimony even started. But in his own way the comedian went on to speak about his recent experience working as a farm labourer in New York state, and he made a series of jokes throughout.

Few of his jokes in the house is quoted below:

He suggested one of the few ways to avoid the need for immigrant labour would be the invention of "vegetables that pick themselves".

Colbert described his ordeal of stooping to pick beans as "really, really hard".

"It turns out, and I did not know this, most soil is at ground level."
 "I certainly hope that my star power can bump this hearing all the way up to C-SPAN 1,"

"America's farms are presently far too dependent on immigrant labor to pick our fruits and vegetables,"

"Now, the obvious answer is for all of us to stop eating fruits and vegetables. And if you look at the recent obesity statistics, many Americans have already started."

"After all," he said, "it was the ancient Israelites who built the first food pyramids. But this is America. I don't want a tomato picked by a Mexican. I want it picked by an American, then sliced by a Guatemalan, and served by a Venezuelan in a spa where a Chilean gives me a Brazilian." 

"My great-grandfather did not travel across four thousand miles of the Atlantic Ocean to see this nation overrun by immigrants," he declared. "He did it because he killed a man back in Ireland. That's the rumor."

"I'll admit I started my work day with preconceived notions of migrant labor," Colbert said. "But after working with these men and women ... side by side in the unforgiving sun I have to say -- and I do mean this sincerely -- please don't make me do this again. It is really, really hard."

Colbert appeared alongside, among others, United Farm Workers President Arturo Rodriguez, whose group over the summer launched "Take Our Jobs," a campaign that challenged U.S. citizens to replace immigrants in farm work.

The group, which says only seven citizens or legal residents have taken it up on the offer, argues that immigrant workers aren't taking citizens' jobs, and is pushing for a bill that would give undocumented farm workers currently in the United States the right to earn legal status.

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