He cannot vote, but an illegal immigrant granted deferred status has joined the presidential campaign of Democrat socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
Cesar Vargas—an activist and undocumented immigrant able to work in the U.S. due to President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program—accepted a job with the Sanders campaign last week, according to multiple reports.
“I joined the campaign because the senator believes not only that we should meet DREAMers but that DREAMers should be part of the conversation to champion policies for the Latino community,” Vargas said in a statement to BuzzFeed News.
Vargas is a well-known immigration advocate and co-founder of the Dream Action Coalition, an advocacy group for undocumented immigrants. In a statement, the organization praised Sanders as a champion for immigrants.
“We respect the work that Secretary Clinton has done, and appreciate her discussion with Dreamers earlier this year,” Ryan Campbell, Communications Director for Dream Action Coalition, said in a statement Friday. “When we think of who is in our corner the most, and who will reform the legislative process to actually make immigration reform possible, Sanders is the obvious choice.”
Earlier in the cycle Hillary Clinton also brought an former illegal immigrant on her campaign, in an appeal to the Latino vote.
Lorella Praeli, a immigration activist and illegal immigrant who was able to obtain a green card via marriage three years ago, joined the Clinton campaign in June as its Latino outreach director.
“Bringing Lorella into our campaign is the next step in making sure families aren’t living in fear of deportation, all students have the chance to go to college, and that any comprehensive immigration reform ensures full and equal citizenship,” Hillary for America’s National Political Director Amanda Renteria said at the time.
The Sanders campaign did not respond to request for comment.