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Hispanic Voters Also Oppose Illegal Immigration, Dan Patrick Tells GOP Delegates

Bob Daemmrich
Texas Tribune
State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican nominee for lieutenant governor, addressed convention delegates Saturday.

Texas Republicans have abandoned a guest-worker program and taken a harder position on illegal immigration in their party platform.

The platform adopted Saturday also borrows from some positions State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican lieutenant governor nominee, has listed on his website.

The platform, like Patrick, calls for repealing in-state tuition for undocumented students who graduated from Texas high schools. It would ban sanctuary cities and increase the number of border security officers.

Patrick, the party nominee for lieutenant governor, told delegates the platform won’t keep Hispanics from voting Republican as Democrats have claimed.

“Mexican-Americans, all Hispanics want the same things you want. They want a secure border,” Patrick told some 8,000 Republicans gathered at the convention in Fort Worth.

“We’re not against legal immigration; we’re against illegal immigration and so are millions of Hispanic Americans,” he said.

Patrick called his Democratic opponent, Leticia Van de Putte, a San Antonio state senator, “a nice lady who’s wrong on the issues.”

Van de Putte, a Latina, has called Patrick’s immigration message “toxic.”

Former KERA staffer Shelley Kofler was news director, managing editor and senior reporter. She is an award-winning reporter and television producer who previously served as the Austin bureau chief and legislative reporter for North Texas ABC affiliate WFAA-TV.