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Public Statements


Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

(Mr. BACA asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute.)

Mr. BACA. Mr. Speaker, we have heard a lot of hateful rhetoric surrounding the immigration debate on this floor. Some of my colleagues stand here and compare immigrants to terrorists and say that immigrants are lazy and are looking for a free ride, when in fact they have made many contributions to this country, positive contributions.

Let me tell you about an honorable immigrant family from Rialto. Corporal Jorge Gonzalez was one of the first soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq, and I say in Iraq, for this country. The wife and infant son were left behind to apply for special permission just so that their United States flag could be draped over his coffin. Jorge was willing to die to protect this country, willing to die to protect this country; but since he was an immigrant, there are some in this body who would call him a criminal. Immigrants are not criminals. They are soldiers. They are our friends. They are our students. They are our doctors.

It is time for Congress to recognize what is right. Stop this hateful rhetoric, stop the lies. Honor the sacrifices made by men like Jorge.

Lord, help us understand and pass real immigration.

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