Linda Sanchez, Scott Shaffer, Helen Huntington discussed on All Things Considered


A party. And kind of the remnants of a party. All right. Well, if you're just joining us, I'm Scott Shaffer here with Marisa Lagos. You're listening to political breakdown from KQED, and we're talking with Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren. She represents the city of San Jose and places south like Gilroy and Morgan Hill. We want to ask about your your beginnings. You know, we always like to ask our guests about their childhoods and How they got to where they are. Now. You were born and raised in the bay Area in San Matteo. What was it like back then? So different than it is today, Right? Relieved, actually born in San with you, but my Parents moved to South Palo Alto when I was three years old, so I actually grew up in South Palo Alto and a very different town than it is today. My dad was a truck driver. My mother was a cook at the company, High school cafeteria. And later she was a secretary. The block I grew up on and south power all that was all blue collar. I don't think there was single person who'd gone to college. Everybody. I think everybody was a union member. It was like after World War two. All the G Uys bought these little houses. It was $9000 house with the G I bill. And raise had kids and raise their families and it was a great place of it was kind of difficult for the parents and sometimes, but it was a great place to be a kid and You know, I I have very fond memories of my childhood and on the block I grew up on. Yeah, I mean, you mentioned it was kind of blue collar. I'm curious. It seems like you went pretty headlong into politics at a pretty young age was politics something you all talked about it home. What? Really expected to go to college? Like, what was the vibe around that? My parents and especially, my mother were very political. You know they had they were high school graduates. But you know, no one had gone to college. But my mother really believed in my parent, my father too, but especially my mother that the government belonged to her right. She was responsible for it. And we would walk pretty things. She was a Democrat. And you know, some mothers would go the march of dimes. We did dollars for Democrats awarded the war. And we would go to the Democratic club meetings and a dinner. You know, we would have dinner together every night and we would talk about you know the president and there we would work on campaigns. I'm not everybody did that. I was only later that I found that Not everybody in their dining room was talking about this and so Um Did they expect you to go to college? I don't know. Well, I You know how I went to college. Mrs. Helen Huntington, who just passed away recently was a counselor, Gunn High School and I actually called me in and she said you ought to be thinking about going to college and I said, Well, how am I gonna do that? We don't have any money, and she said, Well, don't worry about that, and I was getting pretty good grades. But, she said get the bees upto A's And, uh, The money will be there, and for some reason I believed her. So I got the beast, The haze and the A's a pluses and I got Noticed that I had won a California state scholarship, and I panicked because I had applied for California state scholars Mrs Huntington had from me, and so I ended up I got into Stanford applied to two colleges Stanford and Berkeley. Because I didn't know where I didn't know. That was the only two colleges I really knew about. And I got into both. But it was cheaper. Go to Stanford because the scholarship didn't cover fees on Lee tuition. And so that's how I ended up doing that. Okay? And when did you start going by so because you were given a Miss Susan, right? I was like 98 and so all my life. I've Yeah, And when and how many people call you, Zoe? Because I've heard you called. So it incorrectly. Someone you don't know me, Um You know, I don't even remember at this point, but it's Zsa long ago. Well, it's stuck, obviously. Yeah, sure did. So go ahead. You know, after law school, I was going to say you we want to talk about when one of your like me and policy areas is immigration on bond, And I'm curious how you came to that was that Did that have anything to do with where you were going to law school and being in California? Or was it just an area of law that interested? You? You know, I think a number of things I was very close to my father's father, who was an immigrant from Sweden. We used to go over to their They lived in San Leandro. We used to go over to their house for dinner like every Sunday and I would just as soon as we got to their house. I'd make a beeline for him, and we would talk until it was time to eat. And he would tell me you know about his life and about being an immigrant and about the old country He loved. America is very proud of being an American citizen. I was very interested in. You know, you just pick up and go to another country and it changed everything. Um, and then I guess I was interested just in the movements of people. I remember when I was, I think it's sixth grade. I did a big well big for 1/6 grader report on the movements of people in Africa. Why was it that you know this group moved here and what you know? And when I worked for Edwards, I did immigration work for him, and I've just always been interested in it. You know, immigration? Made this country I mean, everybody here except the native Americans. Their family came from someplace and recent. I don't have immigrant very close in our family. Yeah, Living something for me. It's my grand parents. Sometimes it might be their great great grand parents. But everybody here came from someplace else. And that's what made the country and made the country great. I think You are one of seven. What are being called closers that Nancy Pelosi Speaker Pelosi has designated do that. That was Linda. Okay. Linda Sanchez okay from Southern California, But nonetheless you are one of seven who are sort of being charged with shepherding through the house. This immigration reform bill that President Biden has sent over..

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