STATEMENT FROM SENATOR DAVID LUJAN ON KYRSTEN SINEMA AND NALEOJuly 12, 2012
Phoenix, AZ – Today, State Senator David Lujan offered the following statement regarding recent news that Kyrsten Sinema was mistakenly identified as a Latina elected official in the National Organization of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials’ training documents and directories.
“NALEO is a vital resource for elected officials who believe in strengthening the voice of our Latino and allied communities. Their leadership in expanding political opportunity for our communities is essential for the goal of truly representative government.
“NALEO has acknowledged that while ethnicity is not a criterion for membership, Sinema was mistakenly included in the 2011 Directory of Latino Elected Officials.
“The truth is, Sinema has never misrepresented herself. She has been a strong Anglo ally of the Latino community and has never represented herself as anything other than that. She has identified herself as Anglo and has done so each time that she applied for membership at NALEO, an organization that she has been a long-standing member of.
“It is unfortunate that Sinema’s political opponents chose to initiate a cynical narrative based on an administrative error, an honest mistake made by the organization. Similarly, versions of NALEO’s Profile of Latino Elected Officials showcased both Latino elected officials and strong elected Anglo allies like former Senator Kyrsten Sinema and Senator Linda Lopez.
“Attacks like this are unfair to the organization’s aims and distracts from our goal of broadening civic leadership in our Latino communities; a goal that can only be accomplished by cultivating new Latino leaders and encouraging determined non-Latino allies.”