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Immigration activist criticizes Pence remark

Las Vegas immigration advocate Astrid Silva weighed in Wednesday about a comment Mike Pence made during the Tuesday debate for vice presidential candidates.

In the debate, the Indiana governor and Donald Trump’s running mate said: “You whipped out that Mexican thing again.”

Pence’s comment came in response to Hillary Clinton running mate U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine’s criticism of Trump calling immigrants rapists and criminals.

“I spent most of my adult life fighting to become an American citizen, so when Governor Pence talks about ‘that Mexican thing,’ he’s really talking about me,” said Silva, a DREAMer who entered the U.S. at age 4. “He’s talking about my dad who is a Mexican immigrant and works 8, 9, 10 hours every day in 120 degree Vegas heat. He’s talking about my mom who left everything she had and sacrificed her entire life to give her 4-year-old a better life. That’s what he’s talking about.”

Silva, who backs Hillary Clinton, also spoke at the Democratic National Convention in July.

Silva received a work permit through President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration program, aka DACA. In 2014, in a speech at Del Sol High School in Las Vegas, Obama highlighted Silva as an example of someone who can benefit from reforms.

— Ben Botkin/Las Vegas Review-Journal

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