The following release came in this morning from the Loretta Sanchez campaign.
SANTA ANA, CA â€“ During an interview on Univisionâ€™s â€œAl Puntoâ€ program, Assemblyman Van Tran repeatedly refused to answer host Jorge Ramosâ€™ clear, yes-or-no questions regarding comprehensive immigration reform. Van Tran was asked three separate times whether he would support a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants who are currently living in the U.S. Each time, he gave a waffling non-response to the question.
â€œVan Tran wants to represent Orange County families in Washington, but he canâ€™t even give a clear answer to a straightforward policy question,â€ said Jessica Mejia, the campaign manager for Rep. Sanchezâ€™s campaign. â€œOrange County families deserve a leader who can give direct answers to tough questions â€“ especially something as critical and straightforward as immigration reform.â€
Perhaps Van Tran didnâ€™t want to give a straight answer on immigration reform because of his record on the issue:Â
- In July 2010, Tran said that he opposed both amnesty for illegal immigrants and the Justice Departmentâ€™s lawsuit against Arizona over the recently-passed law that required state and local police to check individualsâ€™ legal status when they stop them for other reasons. (Orange County Register, Poll Shows U.S. Torn Over Arizona Law,â€ July 11, 2010)
- In September 2007, Tran voted against allowing newly sworn-in citizens to register and vote on Election Day. (Roll Call votes on SB 382, September 4, 2007, www.leginfo.ca.gov)
- In July 2004, Tran was criticized for being willing to limit the number of immigrants who would have an opportunity such as Tranâ€™s to leave an oppressive homeland. Tran said that immigration had a â€œtremendousâ€ drain on the state. Â (The Associated Press & Local Wire, â€œOrange County Candidate Blazes Trail for Vietnamese-Americans,â€ July 29, 2004)
Unlike Van Tran, Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez has a clear vision for how to fix our nationâ€™s broken immigration system. As Vice Chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rep. Sanchez hasÂ been an advocate for comprehensive immigration reform that would: strengthen and protect our air, land and maritime borders; create a fair system that would put non-criminalÂ immigrants on a path to naturalization; reunite families that have been separated because of a lack of documents; and create a temporary worker program that would help fill critical jobs that Americans cannot perform. She has worked toÂ stem the flow of drugs and weapons along the southwest border, as well as unwanted air entry caused by visa overstays. Furthermore, she has made it a priority to see that Customs and Border Patrol agents are trained vigorously and have the resources they need to secure our nation’s borders.
Jorge Ramos (JR): Your district is really interesting about 15% of the population is Vietnamese, 69 % are Hispanics. Are you for immigration reform? In other words, would you support the legalization of 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country?
Van Tran (VT): You know, it’s interesting that we mentioned about the diversity of this district, because I share Jorge, so much in common with the Latino community in the 47 Congressional District in Central Orange County. The Vietnamese American community are very good neighbors with our Latino neighbors here in Orange County, and we are working very hard to make sure that our relations are good. In terms of the immigration policies, obviously it is a big issue right now in the United States, and I can tell you right now, to our viewers, to you as well, that I will work very hard to make sure that we have a policy that is going to address all the issues and the concerns from all the shareholders, the law enforcement community, the business community as well as the immigration community as well.
Â JR: But the question is really simple and direct. Would you support the legalization of 11 million undocumented immigrants?
Â VT: Well, we definitely have to address the issue, and we’re going to have to get everybody to come together in the same room, to make sure that their issues are addressed and also talked about.Â Because right now Jorge, you know as well as…
JR: But I guess is just a yes or no Mr. Van Tran. I guess is simply a yes or no question.
VT: I don’t think is going to be that simple [â€¦]. What I’m trying to tell you, and I think your viewers also understand that is, that I understand as a former immigrant, as an immigrant myself, a first generation immigrant, that we’re gonna have to resolve this issue by coming together and stop talking about polemics, taking political positions and talking past each other. We need a humane and dignified policy for all parties concerned.