Immigrant rights group backs Thongnopnua
The Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition’s voter arm has endorsed Joda Thongnopnua in the House District 30 race.
Thongnopnua, a Democrat, is competing with Republican Esther Helton for the open seat.
The group, which goes by TIRRC Votes, launched the voter organization this year to “build political power for immigrant and refugee communities and create a proimmigrant majority in the state,” according to a news release.
Thongnopnua parents were both from immigrant families — his father from Thailand and his mother’s family from Italy.
He “understands the challenges and opportunities that come with migrating to the U.S. and how immigrants are a part of the fabric of our communities and the character of our country,” the TIRRC Votes release states. “As a state legislator, Thongnopnua will fight for all working families, including immigrants.”
The release said the organization will mobilize naturalized citizens and their U.S.-born children, along with pro-immigrant allies, “to go to the polls in record numbers.”