Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Janesville, may offer hope for the protection of young immigrants brought to the United States illegally as children, said state Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa.
The Milwaukee Dem, who represents a majority Latino district, said the Trump administration’s move to rescind DACA — the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program — is “a huge slight to the Latino community.”
“It’s devastating for us,” she said Sunday on “UpFront with Mike Gousha,” produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com.
DACA is an Obama-era program that protects children brought to the U.S. illegally from deportation.
“We’re fearful for our DACA dreamers,” Zamarripa said. “We’re fearful for our families, and we realize what a mistake that has been made, that Trump has made.”
The Trump administration said last week that it would rescind the DACA program, but give Congress six months to fix it.
“Congress just does not have the valor to address the broken immigration system in our country,” she said.
“What we have though, is Speaker Paul Ryan, who has said some promising things in support of DACA dreamers,” Zamarripa said.
One of the so-called “dreamers” appeared on the program with Zamarripa.
Laura Patricia Minero, 26, is originally from Mexico and is now working on a doctorate at UW-Madison.
Minero said she came to the United States when she 5 years old. She said the U.S. is the only home she knows, and that she knows “nothing about my native country anymore.”
“I don’t know where I would go,” she said of the possibility of being sent back to Mexico. “I don’t know what I would do with my life there. Everything I have ever known has been here.”
Also on the program, Leah Vukmir emphasized she is the “clear, consistent conservative” in next year’s race for U.S. Senate.
The state senator from Brookfield hopes to win the GOP nomination and challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin in 2018.
Gousha asked her about her primary opponent, Delafield businessman and Marine veteran Kevin Nicholson.
Nicholson was once president of the College Democrats of America and spoke at the Democratic National Convention in 2000, before he said life experiences made him a conservative.
“I appreciate Kevin’s service to our country,” Vukmir said. “I don’t know his record as a conservative.”
Gousha also asked Vukmir about criticism from Democrats that she served as “national leader of a billionaires special interest group,” a reference to the American Legislative Exchange Council.
“They know that I am a strong candidate, that I am a person who stands up for what she believes in, and I actually get things done,” Vukmir said.
“I’m not afraid to stand up against my own leadership,” Vukmir said. “Tammy Baldwin is a member of leadership and she continues to push her leadership to the left. She’s never going to stand up to Chuck Schumer or Elizabeth Warren or any of the others.”
Vukmir, who is the state Senate assistant majority leader, also said the Foxconn deal will get “strong support” when it comes up for a vote later this week.
The Foxconn bill offers the Taiwanese tech giant nearly $3 billion in taxpayer incentives to locate a plant in southeastern Wisconsin, employing 3,000 people to start, and possibly 13,000 in years to come.
“There are enough checks and balances in the legislation to make me comfortable to vote for it,” Vukmir said.
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