First Indian-American Congresswoman Asked Live On C-SPAN If She’s a US Citizen

REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein - RC1A767CC5B0

Virginia Kruta Associate Editor
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Democratic Washington Rep. Pramila Jayapal was forced to defend her own citizenship during a Thursday morning appearance on the daily call-in show “C-SPAN Washington Journal.” Jayapal, who was born in India, was on the show to talk about immigration reform.

To Jayapal’s credit, she didn’t miss a beat in her response. After explaining that one has to be an American citizen in order to serve in Congress, she went on to talk about her own history as an immigrant.

“I am a proud U.S. citizen. I became a citizen in 2000. I’ve actually lived in this country for… since I was 16 years old, and I’m not going to tell my age, but I can assure you, it’s a very long time.”

Citing her own experience, Jayapal then called for a fix — not just to DACA, but to the entire visa and immigration system, which she said was broken.