On the campaign trail, deported veterans advocate to bring their ‘brothers’ homeAlthough the exact number is unknown, the American Civil Liberties Union has documented almost 250 cases of deported veterans living in 34 countries
The Nevada Independent
July 28th, 2019
“We’re asking the presidential candidates if they’re willing to support the repatriation of the veterans they have been deporting and to stop the deportation of those who already have been deported,” Lopez explained.Presidential candidate Kamala Harris speaks to a large crowd of potential voters during a June campaign stop at the Doolittle Community Center in Las Vegas.
But her speech is interrupted by Las Vegas resident Cesar Lopez, who once lived in Harris’ home state of California. His voice grows louder from the middle of the crowd.
Veteran Cesar Lopez talks with presidential hopeful Sen. Kamala Harris during a campaign event at the Doolittle Community Center in Las Vegas on Saturday, June 15, 2019. (Daniel Clark/The Nevada Independent)
“We need someone who will bring our veterans back,” he shouts, before quickly explaining that several hundred deported veterans are unable to enter the country that they risked their lives defending. The crowd breaks into applause, and Lopez continues: “Are you going to bring them back?”
This isn’t his first stop on the campaign trail. Just this year, 45-year-old Lopez has approached Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Rep. Seth Moulton, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, ex-HUD Secretary Julián Castro and entrepreneur Andrew Yang. He usually starts by calling out to them from the crowd and then aims for a one-on-one conversation after the event. His goal is to hold them accountable to one promise: Bring his brothers home.
Although the exact number is unknown, the American Civil Liberties Union has documented almost 250 cases of deported veterans living in 34 countries. A study done by the ACLU highlights the lives and experiences of many of them. (People who aren’t United States citizens can enlist in the military, but they must have a permanent resident card, live in the United States and speak, read and write English fluently.)
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