Why Juan Vargas Is Fasting

Why Juan Vargas Is Fasting

Photo by Sam Hodgson

Rep. Juan Vargas, whose district includes the entire California/Mexico border, is fasting Wednesday to draw attention to immigration reform.

A group of four protesters, housed in a white tent on the National Mall in Washington D.C., hoped to prompt House Republicans to pass an immigration bill, but instead ended their 21-day fast Tuesday.

But the hunger games will proceed with perhaps even more visibility, thanks to some support from one of San Diego’s own.

Clare Leschin-Hoar LogoFreshman Rep. Joe Kennedy (D-Mass.) joined activists by pledging his own 24-hour fast Tuesday morning. On Wednesday, he’ll pass the fasting baton to Rep. Juan Vargas.

How’d that happen? Vargas’ press secretary Dianna Zamora-Marroquin said the idea sprouted during a conversation Kennedy and Vargas shared while attending a Fast for Families event.

“Tomorrow, Rep. Kennedy will come to our office and pass along the Fast for Families that the protesters had been doing at the National Mall,” said Zamora Marroquin. “The goal is to continue it along.”

At the time of our interview, she was still waiting to confirm the third lawmaker in the fasting-chain.

Vargas has been vocal on the issue of immigration reform. His district includes the southern-most portion of San Diego County, all of Imperial County and the entire California/Mexico border.

“In many faiths, fasting is a fundamental way of demonstrating commitment to one’s beliefs,” said Vargas. “Fasting reminds us that we must look past our personal needs in order to seek the greater good.  Here, the greater good is very clear, passing comprehensive immigration reform will bring hope to the millions of people who currently live in the shadows.”

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Clare Leschin-Hoar

Clare Leschin-Hoar

Clare Leschin-Hoar is a contributor to Voice of San Diego. Follow her on Twitter @c_leschin or email her clare@leschin-hoar.com.

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