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State Representative Mary Kunesh-Podein

303 State Office BuildingState Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
651-296-4331

For more information contact: Erik Anderson 651-296-5318

Posted: 2017-05-22
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Press Release

POCI Statement on Inclusion of Anti-Immigrant Language in Budget Deal


St. Paul, MN – On Monday, Minnesota legislative Republicans revealed their latest budget for Public Safety. Buried in the details of that bill, however, was language meant to permanently bar all undocumented immigrants from receiving a non-Real ID-compliant driver’s license, a measure that had been soundly defeated earlier in the session during the Real ID debate after several law enforcement entities opposed the measure. The People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus released the following statement:

“Immigrant communities across the state of Minnesota are powering our economic comeback, and we are lucky to live in a place where people of all faiths, cultures, and backgrounds can work together to build a better future for everyone.

“But the hard work of immigrants from Worthington to Minneapolis to St. Cloud is undermined by the inclusion of anti-immigrant language that Republicans insisted be included in a final budget compromise. Permanently denying undocumented immigrants a driver’s license to get back and forth from work makes our streets less safe and unnecessarily divides communities in every corner of the state. The POCI Caucus stands firmly with Minnesota’s immigrant communities.”

The People of Color & Indigenous (POCI) Caucus is a new caucus first formed in 2017 and includes Reps. Mary Kunesh-Podein (41B), Jamie Becker-Finn (42B), Peggy Flanagan (46A), Erin Maye Quade (57A), Fue Lee (59A), Ilhan Omar (60B), Susan Allen (62B), Rena Moran (65A), and Carlos Mariani (65B).

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