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Kansas GOP congressman's ad has softer tone on immigration

AP  |  Topeka (US) 

Rep. launched a new television ad Tuesday with a testimonial from the widow of an Indian murdered in a City-area bar about the Republican's efforts to help her remain in the US afterward.

The 30-second spot featuring praising Yoder comes with the four-term locked in a tough race against Democrat

Yoder, of a on homeland security, received Donald Trump's full endorsement in July, after the GOP unveiled a plan that included $5 billion that could help build a wall along the US-border.

Yoder's new ad began three days after Trump had a campaign rally in Topeka in a neighboring district that Yoder didn't attend.

The new ad also highlights how immigration is a tricky issue in the City-area 3rd District, which Trump narrowly lost. Bob Beatty, a of Topeka political scientist, said many anti-Trump voters view the as "anti-immigrant," and the ad allows Yoder to "put some distance" between them.

"In a way, an ad like this has to come out after the Trump visit," Beatty said. "This ad is for a relatively small group of moderate that are thinking of voting Democratic this time." Yoder is one of 25 GOP incumbents seeking re-election in a district Trump lost in 2016. Davids has received national attention for her unusual profile as an LGBT and Native American who has fought mixed martial arts bouts.

Dumala's husband, Srinivas Kuchibhotla, was an Indian immigrant working for Device-maker He was shot to death in February 2017 at a bar in the suburb of Olathe and witnesses said the man convicted of the killing yelled "Get out of my country!" before opening fire.

With her husband's death, Dumala's own visa expired, and Yoder helped her get one allowing her to stay in the U.S. She's since formed a group advocating tolerance, and in the ad, she calls Yoder a friend.

Yoder also is working on legislation aimed at clearing a backlog in the processing of work visas, and he's faced some criticism on the right over immigration issues.

"This is a positive story that shows how effective Kevin has been for this community as a and how are to him, but more importantly it shows how much he cares about the people of this community," Yoder said in an email.

Kelly Arnold, the Kansas GOP's chairman, said the spot is an effective one because it reminds voters of Yoder's work for his constituents, "especially when it's making sure justice is being done."

But Davids said Yoder "continues to hide his dangerous voting record behind political grandstanding." "He's in Trump's pocket," said Christ Reeves, a member from Kansas. "So he's trying to get away from it by using one example and saying, 'See, but I'm not always this way.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, October 10 2018. 15:45 IST