Press Statement: Representatives Vargas, Honda and Pocan Urge State Department to Remain Neutral in Upcoming Salvadoran Election

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Dianna Zamora Marroquin, office of Rep. Juan Vargas Tel.: 202-809-0649 | Email: [email protected]

Representatives Vargas, Honda and Pocan Urge State Department to Remain Neutral in Upcoming Salvadoran Election

Washington, DC—Rep. Vargas (CA-51), Rep. Honda (CA-17), and Rep. Pocan (WI-2) were joined by forty eight other Members of Congress in sending a letter to the State Department urging for impartiality in the upcoming presidential elections in El Salvador. “I believe is it essential for the United States to support a free, fair and transparent electoral process in El Salvador,” said Rep. Vargas. “El Salvador has made positive strides in strengthening its voting process and a position of neutrality by the State Department will be an affirmation of El Salvador’s efforts to enfranchise voters and strengthen its democracy.” In the 2009 El Salvador presidential election, the Administration not only vocally supported a free and fair election, but also provided neutral, third party observers, and supported the Organization of American States’ mission to ensure a free and fair electoral process. "Having served as a Peace Corps volunteer in El Salvador, I have a particular affinity with the Salvadoran people," said Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.). "That is why I support the positive efforts the government of El Salvador has made to advance a free, fair, and inclusive democratic process. I am glad to join my colleagues in urging the State Department to support impartiality in the upcoming elections and to stand by the ultimate decision of the Salvadoran people." “I look forward to the State Department cultivating a fruitful relationship with the Salvadoran people’s freely elected government,” said Rep. Vargas. Vargas represents California’s 51st Congressional District which includes the southern portion of San Diego County, all of Imperial County and California’s entire US/Mexico border. Vargas is currently serving his first term in Congress. He represented the 40th California State Senate District from 2010-2012, the 79th California State Assembly District from 2000 – 2006 and served on the San Diego City Council from 1993 – 2000.

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Dianna Zamora-Marroquin Press Secretary Office of Representative Juan Vargas 51st District, California 1605 Longworth House Office Building Washington, DC 20515 Office (202) 225-8045 | Fax (202) 225-9073 http://vargas.house.gov/ Read the Congressional letter to Sec. Kerry, including the names of all 51 signers. Read the CISPES press statement on the Congressional letter.

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