Washington Post: In WA, illegal immigrants canvassing for votes!!!

Since an employer cannot knowingly hire an illegal immigrant, why is 'One America Votes' not being shut down and it's "community organixers" and leaders being arrested?!!!  -Brian

In WA, illegal immigrants canvassing for votes!!!

The Associated Press
Friday, October 22, 2010; 5:01 AM

In this photograph taken Sunday, Oct. 16, 2010, Maria Gianni, right, embraces community organizer Elsa Batris-Boni at a phone bank in Seattle being used by One America Votes, an organization that has launched a vote drive to get naturalized citizen voters to vote Democrat. Gianni is one of several illegal immigrants who are volunteering in the vote drive. (AP Photo/Manuel Valdes) (Manuel Valdes - AP)
 SEATTLE -- When Maria Gianni is knocking on voters' doors, she's not bashful about telling people she is in the country illegally. She knows it's a risk to advertise to strangers that she's here illegally - but one worth taking in what she sees as a crucial election.

The 42-year-old is one of dozens of volunteers - many of them illegal immigrants - canvassing neighborhoods in the Seattle area trying to get naturalized citizens to cast a ballot for candidates like Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, who is in a neck-to-neck race with Republican Dino Rossi.

Pramila Jayapal, head of OneAmerica Votes, says the campaign is about empowering immigrants who may not feel like they can contribute to a campaign because they can't vote.

"Immigrants really do matter," Jayapal said. "If we can't vote ourselves, we're gonna knock on doors, or get family members to vote."

So far the illegal immigrants going door-to-door aren't meeting opposition. Craig Keller, an organizer for Respect WA, a group pushing for stricter immigration law in the Washington, said he doesn't mind illegal immigrants volunteering for vote drives, he just wants to make sure mistakes on the voter rolls don't allow them to vote.

"Anybody can go out and wave a sign, but when it comes to who's making the choices, there's no question they need to be citizens," Keller said.

In close elections across the country, the immigrant and minority vote is considered key for candidates, especially Democrats.

Earlier this week in Nevada, a television ad urging Latinos not to vote sparked outcry from Democrats, who called it a dirty trick meant to keep Hispanics home and boost Republican candidates. Univision and Telemundo - the nation's two largest Spanish-language networks - canceled the ad, which the Republican group Latinos for Reform had planned to eventually run in Nevada, Florida, California, Texas and Colorado through the Nov. 2 election.

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