Democratic Rep Calls GOP ‘Anti-Latino’

Rep. Vicente Gonzalez
Rep. Vicente Gonzalez | Image by U.S. Congressman Vicente Gonzalez 2024/Facebook

Rep. Vicente Gonzalez said on Sunday that Republicans are “anti-Latino,” regardless of immigration status.

The comments came during a press conference in response to Republican plans to increase border security — efforts Gonzalez (D-TX) has consistently opposed, even as unlawful crossings into the United States from the southern border hit all-time highs last year.

“Clearly, without a doubt, these proposals that are coming from the Republican Party are anti-immigrant but also anti-Latino, anti-American Latino,” Gonzalez said. “It impacts our rights and liberties in this country.”

“It is important, and it is urgent that every Latino sees this,” he continued. “And don’t think because you’re a U.S. citizen, you’re ok. They’re targeting our people, and the way we respond is by going to the ballot box and voting them out.”

The congressman is facing a tight reelection race against former Rep. Mayra Flores (R-TX), according to polling from the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC). Flores raised nearly three times more in campaign donations than Gonzalez in the final quarter of 2023.

Flores said Gonzalez’s time in Congress has hurt the Latino community.

“Vicente Gonzalez has consistently voted for higher taxes, higher costs at the gas pump and grocery store, less funding for our border patrol and law enforcement, and has prioritized mass illegal immigration over the Latino community who is here legally,” she told The Dallas Express. “He is what we call hipócrita — and it’s why he will be voted out of office by the people in TX-34 come November.”

Gonzalez opened his remarks on Sunday by claiming his district in the Rio Grande Valley was under control. He then criticized Gov. Greg Abbott’s calls for out-of-state help to control the surge of unlawful migrants coming across the southern border.

“We don’t need help from around the country,” Gonzalez said. “Abbott is clearly embarrassing himself and the whole state by inviting people from around the country to come down to the border to look at problems we have solutions for, and there’s nothing he can do.”

Gonzalez insisted last year that the Biden administration was handling the border properly.

“When they lifted Title 42 and implemented Title 7, which I advocated against … I’ll be the first to admit that I was wrong,” he said in July, per the Rio Grande Guardian. “What the President did, what Secretary Mayorkas has done, has positively impacted our border, and that’s a fact.”

Legislative efforts in the House of Representatives to increase border security have been met with opposition from Gonzalez and other Democrats.

The congressman voted against a bill last week that made fatal high-speed car chases involving U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) within 100 miles of the border a federal crime. The bill was named after Border Patrol Agent Raul Gonzalez, who died in a car chase in Gonzalez’s district. His vote stood apart from the 56 years submitted by fellow House Democrats.

He also voted against a second immigration bill that passed with bipartisan support last week. If enacted, the bill would establish drunk driving as grounds for the deportation of unlawful migrants. A third immigration bill passed with bipartisan support last week — despite a nay from Gonzalez. The bill similarly seeks to qualify Social Security fraud as a crime that can result in deportation.

Gonzalez did not respond to a request for comment.

Delanie Bomar, a spokeswoman for the NRCC, said Gonzalez was untrustworthy and not representing Texans concerned with the record-high levels of unlawful migration.

“Vicente Gonzalez is actively working against his own constituents,” Bomar told The Dallas Express. “Securing the border is in South Texans’ best interest, but Vicente won’t do it because he can’t break away from his Democrat Party bosses.”

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