Republican Sen. Conrad Burns, whose re-election campaign is pressing for tighter immigration controls, referred to his house painter as "a nice little Guatemalan man" and suggested that worker as well as employees of a roofing company he hired might be in the country illegally.
"The other day, the little fella who does our maintenance work around the house, he's from Guatemala, and I said, 'Could I see your green card?'" Burns said at a June meeting recorded by Democrats. "And Hugo says, 'No.' I said, 'Oh gosh.'"
Burns spokesman Jason Klindt said the worker, Hugo Reyes, is legally in the United States, owns a painting company and the senator "never had any doubt" that Reyes is