Students and immigration reform advocates protested yesterday outside one of Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-Wis.) district offices after he appeared at an event held by a controversial anti-illegal immigration group.

The Federation of American Immigration Reform (FAIR) has been designated by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a nonprofit civil rights group, as a hate group. FAIR has been accused of holding extreme views on immigration and accepting funds from white supremacist groups.

FAIR dismisses the SPLC's designation, saying the organization is using the "hate label" for political purposes.

Ryan said that he did not know FAIR was a sponsor of the event and asked the organization to take his name off a list of attendees. The congressman claimed he attended the event in response to a request from a local radio host

The host invited Ryan "radio-thon" called "Hold Their Feet to the Fire" that was organized by FAIR to advocate for tougher immigration restrictions.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel originally reported the story.