The mother of a Texas police officer killed in a car accident involving a drunk driver in the country illegally says Democratic hopeful Beto O’Rourke’s proposals for more lenient immigration policies make her “blood boil.”
In a weekend op-ed in USA Today, Mary Ann Mendoza says the policies preferred by O’Rourke and the other Democratic challengers to President Donald Trump are “a slap in the face not just to legal immigrants, but to everyone who has suffered from the sort of weak immigration enforcement that O’Rourke desires.”
Mendoza’s son, Sgt. Brandon Mendoza of the Mesa, Arizona police department, was killed in a head-on collision in 2014 while on his way home from a shift. The other driver, who was also killed in the accident, was drunk and had been driving on the wrong side of the road for nearly 30 miles.
In the article, Mendoza lambasts O’Rourke for his dismissal of a woman’s question about illegal immigration at a recent rally in Phoenix. The woman questioned whether O’Rourke’s proposals to roll back enforcement of immigration laws and champion more open policies toward asylum-seekers was a “slap in the face” to those who came to the United States legally.
O’Rourke later tweeted about the exchange and said immigrants pose no threat to her and that “we need to call people out for saying they do.”
Mendoza writes that the cavalier attitudes toward illegal immigration promoted by O’Rourke are one of the reasons she lost her 32-year-old son.
“My son’s killer had multiple criminal convictions during his 20 years living illegally in America. Employing the same open borders rationale as O’Rourke, judges, policymakers and activists ensured that he was never deported,” she writes.
“Since my son’s death, I’ve fought to change the policies that enabled it — to get our elected officials to secure the border and remove people who have no right to be here, especially convicted criminals,” Mendoza says.