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Senate Election 2014: New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen Criticized for 'Appearing Anti-Immigrant,' Missing Senate Hearings

First Posted: Sep 27, 2014 03:08 PM EDT
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Immigration and terrorism continue to be issues used to attack Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., due to inaction in Congress.

A petition was filed against several U.S. senators including Shaheen for not supporting President Barack Obama's potential immigration executive action. Congressional Republicans, such as Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, have voiced their opposition to Obama's executive action.

"In siding with Senator Cruz, Senator Shaheen has relayed the message that she is willing to throw Latinos and other immigrant communities under the bus for votes," said Presente Action Executive Director Arturo Carmona, in a statement to Latin Post.

According to Carmona, Shaheen re-election bid has made her evaluate political efforts to "appear more socially conservative and anti-immigrant."

"We have voting power and we're going to use it in the upcoming elections to illustrate that we will not support political candidates who continue to stand in the way of executive action and the continued suffering of 11 million people. Utilizing the Latino population as a means for political gain cannot be tolerated," Carmona said.

Shaheen reportedly supported Senate Republicans on potential action to block Obama from issuing an immigration executive order. The Cruz bill, "S.2666 - Protect Children and Families Through the Rule of Law Act," would "prevent President Obama from expanding amnesty to millions of more immigrants who come to the U.S. illegally."

Shaheen did vote in favor of the bipartisan Senate bill "S.744 - Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act" in June 2013, which was supported by Republican senators such as Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. The bill does not mention amnesty for undocumented immigrants. The House of Representatives has yet to debate the Senate bill.

Shaheen's Republican challenger for her U.S. Senate seat is former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown. According to Brown, Shaheen should have voted for troops at the southern U.S. border. Shaheen has also been questioned on her handling of the Islamic State militant group. As Latin Post reported, Brown wrote a letter to Shaheen to address the issues regarding the Islamic State and its potential threats to the U.S. borders. Brown stated a member of the extremist militant group could cross the border "at any time."

A new report from the Boston Herald revealed Shaheen missed 14 out of 30 Foreign Relations Committee meetings during the 113th congressional season. Democrats, however, claimed Brown missed 44 percent of his Homeland Security Committee meetings between 2010 and 2012 as Massachusetts senator. Shaheen and Brown have not commented on the Herald's report.

Based on the latest New England College poll conducted between Sept. 19 and Sept. 20, Shaheen leads against Brown with 50.1 percent to 42.8 percent.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, New Hampshire's population is 3.2 percent Latino.

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