Both Illinois Democrats and Republicans say they are here to help the Latino community any way they can. Gov. Pat Quinn and Senate Minority Leader, State Sen. Christine Radogno (R-Lemont) spoke at a recent meeting of the Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. On Quinn’s “to do” list, push for immigration reform at the federal level.
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“Many, many people all across our state and across our country understand the importance of immigration reform,” Quinn said. “We’ve got to do it and do it this year and do it right and I think as long as we work together in the same spirit we did here in Illinois on the driver’s license issue, we can make the grade.”
Immigration reform is also a priority of Senate Minority Leader, State Sen. Christine Radogno (R-Lemont). “I want to tell you that I will work for that,” Radogno said. “I will encourage my local congressman to be for that and more importantly try to educate the district that I live in and encourage my other Republican representatives to engage in a productive discussion about that.” She says the issue must be brought “in for a landing.”
Radogno also pointed out to the crowd that it’s tough for Republican lawmakers in Illinois to represent Latinos because of the way the legislative districts are drawn. “I think it’s no secret to anyone that Republicans recognize the importance of the Hispanic community and we want very much to find ways to partner with you to advance not only issues that are important to you but issues that are important to all of us,”Radogno said. “Now that’s a particular challenge for Republicans sometimes but because of the way that the legislative maps are drawn we don’t represent a lot of Hispanic folks, not as many as we would like to. Nor do we have the opportunity always to elect Hispanic folks from Republican districts. We need to work on that and change that.”