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Governor Kasich’s Staff Misleads Press About Previous Encounter with Ohio Families and Advocates

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Group Calls on Governor to Make Good on Meeting Commitment, Articulate Clear Policy

As we reported yesterday, after traveling all the way from Ohio to Iowa to talk to their own Governor, John Kasich, about the President’s immigration executive action programs, 11 year-old U.S. citizen Andrew and his DAPA-eligible mother, Maria, got an encouraging, but partial response.  The Governor said that he didn’t want to separate families like theirs, and agreed to meet with them and other immigrants eligible for DAPA so that he can learn more about their situation.  Ohio’s Voice has been trying to meet with the Governor on this issue and the state’s role in suing its own families since May, but had been rebuffed by the Governor’s office back in Columbus.

Ohio’s Voice was excited to follow-up with the Governor and ask him to take concrete action to protect American families like Andrew’s.  Unfortunately, later that day the Governor’s staff took to the press to try to undermine them, claiming that our group had never requested a meeting.  Ohio’s Voice sent copies of the email exchange proving this false to the Cincinnati Enquirer, which promptly updated their story.   The relevant part is excerpted below.

According to Lynn Tramonte, director of Ohio’s Voice: “Our interaction with Governor Kasich in Iowa was encouraging, but then we were slammed in the face by his staff back home.  The bottom line is, Ohioans shouldn’t have to travel to Iowa to talk to their Governor about a state lawsuit that affects their lives so dramatically.  We expect the Governor to make good on his commitment to meet with us in Ohio soon, and we expect him to articulate a clear policy position that backs up his goal of ‘keeping families together.’

“The state of Ohio should not be suing to prevent immigrants from earning their papers and stabilizing their lives. Governor Kasich has to come clean about where he stands on the deferred action programs and this lawsuit—thousands of Ohioans and voters across the country want to know.”

Here is the excerpt from the Chrissie Thompson/Cincinnati Enquirer piece:

“Kasich instructed an adviser to set up a time to bring Maria and Andrew into the office to share their story.

“But Kasich’s spokesman reacted differently, calling an Enquirer reporter with the administration’s side of the story.

“Three groups of immigration activists came to Kasich’s Columbus office on May 19, spokesman Rob Nichols said, dropping off petitions asking for the governor to withdraw Ohio from the federal suit seeking to stop Obama’s executive action on immigration.

“’They didn’t schedule an appointment. They didn’t ask to meet with the governor,’ Nichols said, disputing Maria’s story.

“(Update: Late Wednesday night, an Ohio’s Voice leader forwarded to The Enquirer a May 12 email from the governor’s office. In it, a staffer acknowledges a request to meet with Kasich, but says: “The Governor will be unable to meet with you.”)”

See video from yesterday’s exchange here.

Ohio’s Voice is a project of America’s Voice.