As the Republican National Convention kicked off today, Virginia Democrats held a press call to cover the ways in which President Trump's harmful immigration policies have created a crisis for Virginia families. Delegates Alfonso Lopez, Elizabeth Guzman, and Hala Ayala discussed how the president's actions have affected the immigrant communities they represent and the positive policies they've advanced in the General Assembly to help Virginia's immigrant population. A full recording of the conversation can be streamed here.
"Trump promised that he would give Latinos more opportunities and the chance to succeed. And time and time again he's broken his promises to our communities. We've seen this play out on the national news where he's putting our families and children in cages. He's made it more difficult for us to get ahead in how he's failed with the coronavirus response...The scary part about this is that [Trump's actions] turn into targeting, profiling, violence, and it can be very lethal," said Delegate Ayala.
"As an immigrant myself this is personal to me. This president has emphasized over and over that if you look brown or if your last name is Guzman, you should feel like less of an American...So I'm excited that Joe Biden, for example, is pushing back and selecting Kamala Harris, the daughter of Jamaican and Indian immigrants who, like me, moved to this country to pursue the American dream," said Delegate Guzman.
"The Trump administration's policies have been ugly, divisive, and wrongheaded. The demonization began on the first day of Trump's run for the presidency when he said incredibly ugly things about Latinos. And that ugliness has pervaded almost every aspect of his immigration policy. The fact that Ken Cuccinelli is helping guide immigration policy for this administration should send an incredibly clear signal that they are not on the right side here, they're not on the correct side, they're not on the just side...The idea of taking the approaches that Ken Cuccinelli and Donald Trump want to take [is] so wrongheaded and so shortsighted, and not who we should be as Americans," said Delegate Lopez.