Southerland Holds Town Hall At FSU


*WCTV would like to make a clarification from our earlier story, Mr. Juan Espinoza is not an undocumented worker. He is legally in the country and in the process of becoming a US citizen.


Tallahassee, FL. 8-16-13

There may be more questions than answers when it comes to immigration reform.

The topic was front and center during U.S. Congressman Steve Southerland's town hall meeting today in Tallahassee. One person in the audience in particular was interested in what the Republican lawmaker had to say.

Juan Espinoza was just four when his parents emigrated from Peru to America. He now has two college degrees and dreams of a future in politics. But life growing up wasn't always smooth.

"It's a scary life at times," said Espinoza. "I remember being younger. You're always going to immigration hearings."

Espinoza was one of about 75 questioning the congressman during a town hall. Southerland took questions covering everything from health care to climate change.

"[Juan's] situation is unique and in a fair society to honor immigration that we have in the past we must also honor immigration present and future," said Southerland.

The congressman however wouldn't go as far as to say he would sign a bill that led to a path to citizenship.

Although Southerland's conversation with Espinoza during the town hall about immigration at FSU was civil, some people in the audience were growing tired of the congressman's answers. At one point a woman started swearing at the lawmaker.

"We are not going to subject those that I represent to such language," said Southerland.

The woman then shouted out 'then you might as well get used to it.'

Espinoza says he appreciated the congressman's time, but isn't too hopeful real immigration reform will pass anytime soon.


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