Immigrant Rights Group targets Mel Martinez

05/09/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday | Listen to this entire show:


This afternoon immigrant rights activists held a prayer vigil in front of Florida Senator Mel Martinez Tampa Congressional office.


They’re calling on the GOP Senator to support comprehensive immigration reform.


It was the 2nd such event in recent days in Florida where Martinez was targeted by immigration supporters.


Yesterday in Miami, a new coalition of activists held a news conference, where they called on Martinez to lead, and not retreat on immigration reform.


The Coalition for Comprehensive Immigration Reform) is running print advertisements and radio spots in Martinez’s home state. The ads press the Senator, a Cuban-American immigrant himself, to move the Senate away from a White House-floated proposal that immigrant-rights groups consider draconian.


WMNF spoke yesterday with Clarissa Martinez, the campaign manager for the Coalition for Comprehensive Immigration Reform.  (roll tape#1 o.q.” we need action”)


That’s Clarissa Martinez, from the Coalition on Comprehensive Immigration Reform.


Mel Martinez did not exactly welcome the call for him to become more involved.

In a statement,  Martinez lashed out, saying, “"I've been working since Day One on this matter and for clearly partisan groups to design a national campaign and put out advertisements signals to me that they're more interested in creating a divide than working toward a solution”.Mel Martinez is also the Chairman of the National Republican Committee.  But it was his support of comprehensive immigration legislation last year that prompted many Republicans to oppose his ascension to that title.The Senate is expected to debate the issue next week.

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