The Smithsonian Institution acknowledges it mistakenly rented space to an advocacy group that one civil rights organization calls a hate group.
Smithsonian spokeswoman Linda St. Thomas told the Washington Post that allowing the group to use museum space violates a policy that bars partisan, political groups. The Smithsonian did not cancel the event, though. St. Thomas says it would be unfair to cancel because of a museum staffer's mistake.
"They didn't look at the nature of the group. They didn't do the research," St. Thomas said.
"If the Smithsonian deems us unworthy, we are disappointed. But we think that [comes from] what they have read, but not our reputation," Carnevale told the Post.
FAIR is currently holding a two-day lobbying effort in Washington and advocates a temporary moratorium on all immigration.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has called FAIR a hate group. The Anti-Defamation League said on its Web site that FAIR spreads a "xenophobic message," according to the Post.