Delia Ramirez

Candidate for US House - 3rd District

Candidate Q&A

Why are you running?

Two years ago when I won my first Congressional election, I became the first Latina Congresswoman from the Midwest and the only member of Congress in a mixed-status household. After a year serving in this role, it is more clear to me than ever why my voice is so badly needed in the halls of Congress. I ran for Congress because I knew the newly drawn IL-3 needed to be represented by someone who was deeply rooted in the issues most deeply impacting working people. We needed representation that would be responsive and accountable to the needs of our communities and that is what I have strived to do during this first year.

I made a commitment to the residents of the IL-3 district to champion affordable housing, comprehensive immigration reform, and to stand up to protect our democracy from right wing attacks. That’s exactly what I’ve done over the past year as I have worked to overcome Republican chaos in Congress. Despite Republicans’ inability to govern, I’ve been proud to introduce the Tenants Right to Organize Act, and co-sponsor Medicare for All, the Lift the Wage Act, an Assault Weapons Ban, and the Green New Deal for Health Act.

I have also been able to pass my first bill out of committee, a bipartisan bill to restore the education benefits of veterans who were defrauded by for profit colleges. This is work I will seek to build on during my second year and beyond. The Federal government has a critical role in helping solve many of the issues we are facing at the local level, and we need strong advocates in Washington making sure Illinois is getting the resources it needs for our communities to thrive. I am firmly committed to this and that is why I am ready to seek a second term and continue to build on what we’ve started.

How has your district been impacted by the migrant crisis and what do you think should be done?

The recent arrival of more than 20,000 asylum seekers in Chicago reveals the cracks in our broken immigration system that have been there for decades. These migrants have legally crossed the border through official ports of entry, applied for asylum, and are lawfully entitled to an asylum hearing. While many challenges remain, I have been heartened to see the communities in my district step up to help our new neighbors and coordinate mutual aid efforts to welcome them.

One thing must be clear–we need the federal government to respond appropriately by allocating sufficient federal funds to meet the moment. Immigration is inherently a federal issue, and our state and local municipalities will continue to struggle in their response so long as they bear the brunt of the financial obligation. I have written a letter to President Biden calling for no less than $5 billion in federal funds to support welcoming cities nationwide.

Chicago has been able to welcome and house more than 30,000 Ukrainian refugees with less duress because of the resources available through the federal government. We need these same resources and programs to be extended to all asylum seekers.

What do you think immigration reform in Congress should look like?

As the first Latina Congresswoman from the Midwest and the only member of Congress in a mixed-status household, immigration reform is deeply personal to me. As I’ve shared before, my mother crossed the border while pregnant with me so that she could secure a brighter future for my siblings and I. My family’s story is one that many across this country share, but unfortunately they face an unnecessarily complicated and outdated process that bars them from becoming full-fledged citizens.

Immigrants contribute significantly to the United States’ economy, workforce, and culture, and by reforming our immigration system we can address many problems that our country faces, such as hiring shortages.

We can start by passing the Dream and Promise Act to provide DACA recipients with a pathway to citizenship. We must also make the necessary staffing investments to address the case backlog in immigration court, the consequences of which we can see play out with the backlog of asylum seekers waiting for their hearing. We should also expand work permits for all so that migrants are able to provide for their families and achieve economic stability without fear of legal repercussions.

The federal government also has a responsibility to support sanctuary cities like Chicago and welcoming states like Illinois who are taking the lead in sheltering new arrivals.

How important is bipartisanship to you and what issues have you worked on across the aisle or with people who don't uniformly share your beliefs?

I believe that there are many common-sense solutions that Congress can and should lead on with bipartisan support. Three months after being sworn into Congress, I introduced the Student Veterans Benefits Restoration Act to the Veteran Affairs Committee on which I serve. This bill would reinstate veterans GI Bill benefits after being defrauded by for-profit college or university, and helping thousands of veterans secure their degree. I’m proud that by reaching out to my Republican colleagues, I was able to pass the bill out of committee with bipartisan support. It now awaits a full vote on the House Floor, where I am working to make sure it gains further bipartisan support for its passage.

What action, if any, do you want to see next on abortion access after the Dobbs decision?

In the absence of judicial protections for abortion access, Congress must act legislatively. I’m proud to co-sponsor the EACH Act, which would abolish the Hyde Amendment that denies low-income individuals the opportunity to access reproductive healthcare and abortion access. I’ve also co-sponsored the Reproductive Health Travel Fund Act to approve grants for patients who must travel to access reproductive health care.

In order to take further action to codify Roe v. Wade, we need Democrats to win a majority in the House and keep the Senate in 2024. I worked in the IL State Legislature to pass legislation that codified Roe v. Wade in our state, and I will continue fighting to do so federally.

Did Joe Biden legitimately win the 2020 presidential race?


Should the United States provide Ukraine with money in its fight against Russia?


Should the United States provide Ukraine with aid in the form of military supplies?


Should the U.S. provide Israel with money in its fight against Hamas?


Should the United States provide Israel with aid in the form of military supplies in its fight against Hamas?


Should there be a law requiring background checks on all gun sales?


Should Congress pass a federal law banning semi-automatic assault-style weapons and large-capacity magazines to help address gun violence?