Audio from raw interview leading to bigger backlash for El Cajon Mayor Mark Lewis

Lewis issued apology, refuses to resign
EL CAJON, Calif. – In an interview with a national magazine, El Cajon Mayor Mark Lewis appears to paint various minorities with a wide brush, characterizing groups of people as drug dealers and moochers.

According to audio obtained by, Lewis holds nothing back in his interview with The Progressive when it comes to his opinions of Chaldeans, Iraqi-Americans of Christian faith.

“The Chaldeans, being like the sands of the desert, you know. They’re very … If there’s a way to make a buck, they will do it. I mean, it’s just amazing,” Lewis said in the recording.

But Lewis said money is a problem when it comes to recent immigrants draining city resources.

“When they come over here, or flown over here, quit telling them to call 911, you know, because that’s why we have to have interpreters,” said Lewis.

Lewis offered his take on the main obstacle when it comes to Chaldeans succeeding, saying, “Well, they don’t understand English. The best thing that could ever happen to a Chaldean is to learn how to write and spell English.”

Lewis went on to express concerns about Chaldeans and driving safety.

“… People who drive cars with veils; Yeah, try to figure that one out. They want the driver’s license, pictures with their veil across there …,” said Lewis.

While Iraqi-Americans are the main focus of the interview, Lewis is also not shy when it comes to his opinion on other minority groups and the drug trade.

“The Mexican community feels intimidated, in regards to Chaldeans trying to get into their turf, in regards to selling drugs, same as the Black Africans, Black Americans,” Lewis said.

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