FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 1, 2007
Contact: John Rankin
Brownback Launches Iowa Vietnamese Coalition
Community leader cites Brownback's record on human rights and religious freedom
DES MOINES – The Brownback for President campaign today announced that Vietnamese community leader Toan Tran will chair the newly-formed Iowa Vietnamese for Brownback Coalition.
"Senator Brownback has tirelessly fought for religious liberty and freedom
for those suffering in Vietnam and authoritarian regimes across the world,"
said Tran. "The Vietnamese community in Iowa shares Senator Brownback's
commitment to the dignity of every human being and the right to freedom
of expression and religion."
Tran, an auto mechanic in Des Moines, emigrated from Vietnam to the U.S. and serves as president of the Vietnamese Catholic Association at St. Ambrose Cathedral in Des Moines.
Brownback authored the Vietnam Human Rights Act and has chaired the East Asia Subcommittee of the Foreign Relations Committee. Brownback played an influential role in bringing Vietnamese refugees to the U.S. after they had been stuck in legal and diplomatic limbo in the Philippines for more than a decade after fleeing Vietnam.
"I am deeply humbled to receive the support of the Vietnamese community,
many of whom were imprisoned in gulags after fighting with America against
the communist forces in their country," said Brownback. "We all have something
to learn from the Vietnamese community in Iowa, who fought and paid dearly
for the freedom they enjoy in America today. America must have the moral
leadership to stand for freedom, human rights and the dignity of the individual
at home and abroad."
Brownback has chaired the Helsinki Commission, which works to promote
human rights around the world, and he co-founded the Religious Liberty
Task Force in Congress.
Brownback recently launched several coalitions: Faith and Values, Catholics, Taxpayers, Pastors, and Moms for Brownback to build grassroots support for the Ames Straw Poll on August 11.