California State Assemblymember Van Tran appeared on Univisión's Al Punto program today, the Spanish-language version of the major network's Sunday-morning blabberfests. But those who no hablar now probably know it for being the setting where Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez--the OC GOP's Moby Dick, and the person whom Tran is trying to defeat--memorably railed against "Vietnamese" trying to take her seat.
Tran appeared at the invite of host Jorge Ramos, a hell of an interviewer who allowed Tran to ramble on and on about how Loretta has done nothing in her 14 years on Capitol Hill, an assertion I won't debate, but one that hardly qualifies him to replace her. Funnier than that, though, was Tran straining to paint himself as more Mexican than Sanchez--even if that meant him waffling on the question of amnesty for illegal immigrants.
Early in the interview, Ramos asked Tran if he was in favor of amnesty for the nation's illegals. Tran went on to say he "shares much in common" with Latinos and said the issue was one that was pretty big in the United States right now. Ramos asked again, stating his question was "really simple and direct: will you legalize or not 11 million undocumented"?
"Well, we definitely have to address the issue," Tran responded, in his droning voice; watching paint dry is more thrilling than hearing Tran. He also said something about getting both sides of the issue in the "same room," but Al Punto's producers made the unfortunate choice of playing Tran's responses and the Spanish-language translation simultaneously, creating a sometimes-cacophonous dual track (note to producers: subtitles? Also? His name is Tran, not "Tram," the way you currently list him on the Al Punto website. I guess it could've been worse--you didn't label him chinito.)
Ramos wouldn't tolerate Tran's waffling. "The question is, 'Yes or no?'" Ramos interrupted. "Nothing more."
"I don't think it's going to be that simple," Tran replied, before going on to note that Loretta hadn't done anything on the issue in 14 years, that he understands the Univisión audience better than Loretta because he's an immigrant, and someone who grew up here as an immigrant. It's a theme Tran is starting to emphasize in media interviews--he's more wab than the pocha Sanchez.
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That's funny--not so much the quien-es-más-macho? on ties to immigrants bit, but Tran's non-answer lie on amnesty. He told the Orange County Register editorial board he's not in favor of the blanket amnesty about which Ramos asked, and surrounds himself with some of the more-reprehensible Know Nothings in the country. In the past, Tran and his acolytes have emphasized they are LEGAL immigrants, not like those ILLEGAL Mexicans, a distinction Tran didn't make in his interview with Ramos. So what's the frequency, Van? And John and Ken: will you know put his head on a stick for not embracing your deport-'em mentality?
By the way, gentle readers: what's more pandering--Tran trying not to show his Know Nothing colors to the Univisión audience, or Loretta constantly dressing in ao dais? I still vote for the latter, but was quite funny to hear Tran trying to connect with an audience that, if they knew the truth about him, would unanimously vote for Sanchez, supposedly light skin and all.
Anyhoo, the tape!