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Perlmutter Invites Daughter of Deported Immigrant to State of the Union
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) invited Viviana Andazola Marquez to be his guest at the 2018 State of the Union. Her father, Melecio Andazola-Morales, was deported in December after living in the U.S. since 1998.
“The case of Viviana’s father is devastating. Their family’s situation exemplifies the indiscriminate, unjustified and cruel immigration policies being pursued by this President and his administration. Folks like Melecio are positive, contributing members of society and are often the only source of financial support for their family. In Viviana’s case, her father will no longer be able to see her graduate from college and is no longer able to support his family here in the U.S.”
On October 12, 2017, Melecio had an appointment with USCIS in Aurora, CO. It was supposed to be one of the last steps in the 15-year process for Melecio to get a green card. Instead he was detained at the appointment. Immediately following his detention, Perlmutter worked with ICE officials and others to try and delay or defer action on Melecio’s case, including introducing a private bill on Melecio’s behalf on November 9, 2017. However, due to ICE policy changes regarding private bills, deferred action requests are no longer accepted.
“We can never forget that when we talk about immigration policy, we are talking about real people and families who are our neighbors, friends and members of our community. We are a nation of immigrants – it’s what makes our country great – and President Trump’s policies of targeting people with no criminal records and breaking up families is disgraceful. I’m proud of Viviana’s strength and courage to share her story and her determination to continue fighting for her father and other families in similar situations.”
Viviana is from Thornton, CO and is currently a senior at Yale University. She is set to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in ethnicity, race and migration in May. She hopes to go to law school and become an attorney. She shared some of her struggles in her college essay to Yale and again after her father was deported. Viviana also served on Perlmutter’s Youth Advisory Council in 2013.