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Filed Under Politics

Letter To Potential Voters

Posted October 24, 2006

Republican congressional candidate Tan Nguyen denies sending a threatening letter to Hispanic voters in his California district, a letter which states that even a legal immigrant can be deported for voting in a federal election. We have reprinted a copy of the actual letter he sent. The Irony Police would like to point out that Mr. Nguyen is himself an immigrant.

Hey Amigo,

We might not know each other, but my name's Sergio. I got a little auto body shop down on Pacifica, and I put in new rims for your cousin. After he got out of jail, remember? So it's like almost November, and some people are telling you that you should get out and vote. As a friend, I would never tell you that you shouldn't vote, but on the down-low, just between you and me: I want to tell you about my experience.

After the election things started falling apart. My girlfriend Maria – you know her? That sweet little Puerto Rican girl – she broke up with me when I told her I voted. Puerto Ricans are very sensitive about voting because they don't live in a state, so they aren't even allowed to vote. And things were going so good with us.

And look at Sammy Sosa. Like only six months after I voted, he's suspected of doing steroids. My uncle's leaf blowing business went bankrupt, and his cousin's nephew got busted for cockfighting. Not to make it a conspiracy theory or anything, but ever since I voted Ricky Martin hasn't recorded a hit single.

And before long there was a knock on my door. Somebody from La Migra decided I was in the country illegally. That next day they ship me off to Mexico, but I'm not even Mexican. Since I don't have a cιdula or anything so they lock me up.

I ain't a legal scholar, but my friend Julio (I'm sure you know Julio) studied criminal defense at Orange County Community College. He say that any 'naturalized' citizen can vote in the upcoming elections. 'Naturalized' means either you're a girl who doesn't shave her legs, or your grandparents' grandparents were born in this country.

The thing about what's different here than where we come from is you can't bribe people. But every once in a while you can trade favors. I don't know for sure, but I heard the Democrat guy used to work for the ACLU, which is the official name of the Minutemen, so you probably shouldn't vote for him. If you have to vote, and I'm definitely not saying you should or shouldn't - you should weigh the facts and think about it. The Republican says he's anti-immigration but you might vote for him anyway, because he'll owe you, and take it from me – you never know when you need it.

I've heard about people's rides being towed from the voter station parking lot. Imagine – they already know where you live, and what you drive – you might as well give them the PIN number to your Western Union account.

Stay away from those electronic voting machines – I hear you can definitely get cancer from them. If you end up at the voting booth, it's a good idea to vote in a different county or state than where you stay, just to make sure that no one can catch you. Ask for a provisional ballot, because those always get counted last, so you have the chance to move.

Another piece of advice – make sure that you can run faster than a pit bull. Security is tight at polling stations, especially after 9/11, and the dogs get real jumpy when they see people with skin like ours.

Did you know that criminals can't vote? That doesn't just mean felons, but anyone with a misdemeanor, or a speeding ticket, or anybody who's sparked a blunt when they thought nobody was looking. Not that I'm saying that's you, but maybe you know someone like that? You might just be an accomplice.

I have to go now – there are like fifty people in my cell but they only bring in enough food for ten of us, so you have to beat your way into dinner. Not like that happens to every Latino voter. But you never know.


Sergio Ramirez



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