Politics
3:16 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Listen and Decide if Alex Sink's Immigration Reform Answer Is 'Shocking'

The question to the three candidates running for Congressional Distrcit 13, Congressman C.W. "Bill" Young’s former seat, was straightforward:

“The Senate has passed a comprehensive immigration bill. If it’s brought to a vote in the house, would you support it? And, why? And if not, why?” asked moderator Susan MacManus, a University of South Florida political science professor.

Tuesday's Congressional D-13 debate from left to right: USF professor Susan MacManus, Libertarian Lucas Overby, Republican David Jolly and Democrat Alex Sink.
Credit Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

The candidates answered in order.

First, Libertarian Lucas Overby who said he would support the Senate immigration bill.

Republican David Jolly objected to the senate bill because it offers a “pathway” to citizenship for undocumented residents.

Democrat Alex Sink supported the Senate immigration bill and gave examples.

“It’s one of the main agenda items of the Beaches Chamber of Commerce for obvious reasons because we have a lot of employers over on the beaches that rely upon workers and especially in this high growth environment, where are you going to get people to work to clean our hotel rooms or do our landscaping? And we don’t need to put those employers in a position of hiring undocumented and illegal workers,” Sink said.

Sink’s opponents were quick to seize on that reference.

Lenny Curry, Chairman of the Republican Party of Florida,  sent out an email calling Sink’s comments “as shocking as they are narrow-minded.”

The Tampa Bay Times characterized Sink’s example as a “potential stumble” adding that “Republicans took to Twitter to skewer her.”

But, instead of relying on bits and pieces, you can listen to the full audio of all three candidates to decide.

This is the full, unedited, audio of the "immigration reform" question and all three candidates' answers from Tuesday's debate sponsored by the three chambers of commerce in Pinellas County.