Tags: luis gutierrez | immigration | 2020 election | travel | family

Gutierrez Plans National Travels With Wife to 'Engage in Politics'

Gutierrez Plans National Travels With Wife to 'Engage in Politics'
Rep. Luis Gutierrez (Tom Williams/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 30 November 2017 10:43 AM

Rep. Luis Gutierrez Thursday didn't directly say if he is seeking the presidency in 2020, but he hinted strongly at the possibility, saying does plan to work with his wife, to "engage in politics together" over the first six months of next year while keeping pressure on his party to make sure it remains true to its immigrant causes.

"My wife and I, my family, my daughters, we're going to be able to engage in politics together, not separated by 800 miles, sleeping and living in two different distinct worlds," the Illinois Democrat told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program. "What I want to do is create a parallel structure so we can win in 2020 and defeat Donald Trump, and I want to create that structure in Ohio, in Ohio and Pennsylvania and Michigan."

However, on Wednesday, Gutierrez, who was first elected to Congress in 1992, told Politico that he'll learn if there is enthusiasm for a presidential bid, and that "maybe in six months I'll come back and say 'no.'"

Gutierrez noted there are tens of thousands of immigrants in the four states specified — which also are key states in any presidential election — and he wants to help them become citizens.

"I want to coordinate . . . I can keep pressure on my own party to make sure my party is true to its immigrant causes," he added.

Gutierrez also on Thursday endorsed Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia as his successor.

"His dad crossed that border 50 years ago, and now his son is an American citizen," he said. "I hope he will be a member of Congress, and I hope the voters agree with me. Send him to Congress, what a great counterpoint for Trump."

Gutierrez also said his island of Puerto Rico "calls for me" following its hurricane devastation earlier this year.

"My heart bleeds for her every day," the congressman said. "I want to work tirelessly on that."

He also denied that he's trying to upset "the apple cart," but instead, he wants to strengthen it.

"I've visited 100 cities in the last 10 years," he said. "I have friends, there are fighters out there. I'm going to engage them in a conversation and what's the best way Luis Gutierrez can help defeat Donald Trump in 2020, and I don't want to do it here in Congress."

He also wants to work toward the goal of immigration reform, conceding that it might not be possible that it will happen unless Trump is out of office.

"Unless we have a woman or man in the White House committed to immigration reform, my goal will never be accomplished," he said, while denying he was retiring.

"Because you change your focus and your energy and priorities doesn't mean you're retiring," he said. "I know there's a lot of sad people out there that want me to stay here. You humble me by your calls of sadness, but don't despair. I'm not going anywhere. I'm going to see you in your neighborhood very soon, in your city, in your county, in your village. "

Meanwhile, he said that Democrats are in a good place when it comes to protecting the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, but with the ongoing budget talks, "if you want to have a budget, it has to reflect our deals, our goals, our aspirations. A deal without a Dream Act in it is not one I'm going to vote for."

The congressman also commented on the situation concerning Rep. John Conyers, D-Michigan, and whether he should step down amid numerous allegations of sexual harassment.

"It is the right decision to step down from his Judiciary leadership position to be here, given these allegations," Gutierrez said. "The Ethics Committee is going to continue to investigate. I hope they do it quickly, swiftly, because that's what those women deserve. They deserve a swift, quick answer and conclusion to this."

He said he believes that people are innocent until proven guilty, but he also believes women who have claims on Conyers.

"I think we need to get to this as quickly and as effectively as possible so we're showing respect for those voices that are rising across America," he said.

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Rep. Luis Gutierrez Thursday didn't directly say if he is seeking the presidency in 2020, but he hinted strongly at the possibility, saying does plan to work with his wife, to "engage in politics together" over the first six months of next year while keeping pressure on his...
luis gutierrez, immigration, 2020 election, travel, family
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2017-43-30
Thursday, 30 November 2017 10:43 AM
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