DENVER, CO –(ENEWSPF)–October 17, 2012. During the second presidential debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney, voters saw the first face-to-face encounter over immigration, with Romney proving again why public opinion polls show him badly trailing among Latino voters.
Rather than explain his support for “self deportation” of undocumented immigrants — a stated policy to make life so miserable for them that they would leave — the Republican tried to change the subject. On this question, President Obama showed his understanding and commitment to enacting a sensible and comprehensive immigration reform law.
Eliseo Medina, SEIU International Secretary-Treasurer, issued the following statement following the debate:
“In choosing a president, Latino voters are looking for someone who has the guts to fight for what they believe in. Following tonight’s presidential debate, it is clear that President Obama believes in comprehensive fix to the immigration system, and is committed to enacting the needed reforms.
“With Mitt Romney, however, we do not know what he believes. Nor does he have the guts to do what’s right for our economy, for families and for workers. Ignoring the fact that polls continue to show Republicans out of step with the public on the issue of immigration, Romney blurted out he would pass comprehensive immigration reform in his first year if elected. That is simply unbelievable.
“What we do know about Romney is that he said he would snatch away the dreams of deserving young people by ending President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects undocumented immigrant youths from deportation. We know that Mitt Romney has promised to veto the DREAM Act. We heard him say that he would offer a pathway to citizenship for DREAMers only if they serve in the military — so that in his eyes, they are good enough to sacrifice their lives but not to earn legal status.
“We also know that Romney supports Arizona’s xenophobic immigration laws which were written by his key advisor, Kris Kobach, who also is advising the Republican Party. Mitt Romney has never taken back his preference for ‘self-deportation’ of undocumented immigrants. He has never said what he would do about the 11 million who are now in the country without documents.
“If Mitt Romney believes otherwise, he hasn’t shown the courage of his convictions.”