U. S. Congress member Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA, District 18) was the keynote speaker at La Raza Roundtable’s monthly meeting on February 22nd at CTC in San Jose.
“I wanted to experience for myself La Raza Roundtable, its leader Victor Garza, and its Board with whom I conferred prior to this meeting. The community leaders present here are the ones who make our communities operate in the interests of its residents. I appreciate what you do and thank you for your public service. This is inspiring and we all want to be inspired,” said Anna G. Eshoo, House of Representatives.
Eshoo talked about her Armenian immigrant heritage. She is a first generation citizen who was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1992. She described her childhood experiences with an extended family which included her grandmother’s bedroom on the first floor. Her father earned his wages as a watch repairman. Her mother was the homemaker who prepared ethnic food at home.
“This past November 2012 Presidential Election, something very important happened. For the first time, Congressional members were a diverse group. African American, Asian Americans, and Hispanics, voted Democratic. The Republican Party has to face the reality that for the first time the U.S. Congress, both House and Senate, were dominated by diverse elected members. Minorities became the majority last November 2012. California’s congressional delegation, whose Chair is Zoe Lofgren, has more women than men. The Republican Party now faces the reality that it will never have national public policy influence unless it changes its stance. Ethnic groups will not vote for a party that does not speak to them with consideration and respect.”
She went on to explain that this November 2012 election event shifted the perspective of the Republicans in a manner that may make it possible to enact the needed Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act during this 2013 Congressional session. “Already some Republican members of Congress, both Senate and House members, are talking about favoring immigration reform. It will not be easy, but with effort it will be done before the 2014 midterm elections.” said Eshoo.
Eshoo informed all that Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-16th District) will do a very good job on immigration reform. Lofgren is the ranking Democratic member of the House Committee on the Judiciary. and is the chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law.
;In April 2011, Lofgren became the first to call for federal investigation into the Secure Communities deportation program. Lofgren is currently the chair of the 34-member California Democratic Congressional Delegation. Lofgren is in contact with the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus as well as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Zoe Lofgren, esq., practiced immigration law and taught that subject at the Law School, Santa Clara University.
“Dreamers are American kids, raised and educated here. America is the only nation they know. We should not be deporting Dreamers whose skills and training are needed by our commerce and industry. Polls reveal that 90% of Californians favor a path to citizenship. The law needs to be fair, to keep families together, to require the undocumented to go to the ‘back of the line’, and to have paid their taxes, etc. “It will take time for all the issues to be resolved, but, now, with bipartisan support, that is possible,” said Eshoo.
Eshoo expressed her hope that during this congression-al session, a comprehensive immigration reform act will be passed with bipartisan support. The facts are that the undocumented, numbering 10 to 12 million are here, have been here, in our American communities, and the broken immigration system and its administration must be fixed. The political tide has turned towards favoring resolution of the immigration issues in this nation.
Congresswoman Eshoo stayed to answer questions and provide photo-ops to the many who desired that.