America's Voice En Español »
Willard, OH – Today, Jesus Lara’s 14 year-old son, Eric, emailed U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs over 35,000 names in support of cancelling Jesus’ deportation.
A new video shows Eric and his brothers Edwin and Anuar, along with sister Elsiy and Jesus outside the Willard Library after emailing the petition to Rep. Gibbs.
This past Saturday, the children spent all day canvassing in Willard to gather more support from the local community. All told, the petition was signed by 35,654 people, including 609 of Rep. Gibbs’ constituents, and another 1,352 Ohioans.
Perhaps Edwin put it best in the video when he described his pact with his dad, an involved and loving father: “I want my dad to be here, because he is going to pay for our education, and we are going to help him with his vitamins when he is older.”
Although the Lara children are still waiting for a response to their emailed petition, Rep. Gibbs’ office has recently begun giving statements to the media. The Norwalk Reflector reports:
On Tuesday, the Reflector received this statement from Dallas Gerber [Gibbs’ Communications Director]: “We do not comment on our office’s casework. On the issue of illegal immigration in general, Congressman Gibbs has always believed if someone entered the United States illegally, or overstayed their visa, they should be sent home and enter the United States legally.
Also, the office of Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) provided this statement to Reflector: “Yes, we contacted ICE on his case multiple times. Unfortunately, there was nothing we could do to help. He has exhausted all appeals.””
According to Lynn Tramonte, an advocate for the Lara family and director of Ohio’s Voice:
I’m shocked and saddened by the responses from Rep. Gibbs and Senator Portman to this tragedy unfolding in front of them. They know that Jesus Lara has no way to enter the country legally, or he would do so immediately. Rep. Gibbs and Senator Portman have the power to step in and advocate for the four U.S. citizen children at the heart of this matter, but so far they have been unwilling to use it.
The fact is, Jesus Lara has been working in the country legally for years under an Order of Supervision granted to him by the Department of Homeland Security. The Trump Administration could simply choose to renew Jesus’ stay of removal, as the previous Administration did for years, and leave this family alone. Instead, they are choosing to deport a taxpayer and homeowner, and turn a two-parent household into a broken home. This makes no sense at all, and if Rep. Gibbs and Senator Portman have an ounce of political courage, they will make a call to the Trump Administration and write a new ending for this loving Ohio family’s story.