Interview of President Barack Obama at “El Bueno, La Mala, y El Feo” (The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly):
RM: Hello, how you doing Mr. President?
PBO: I’m doing great.
RM: Thank you so much for this time. And ladies and gentlemen, today we have Mr. President Obama with us on the show. Welcome. Mr. President…
PBO: Now, so do we have everybody on? We got “El Bueno”, we got “La Mala”?
SDV: Yes sir.
AM: And also the ugly which is me, “El Feo”.
PBO: “El Feo”. Now the thing I want to know is why is Sylvia the bad one?
SDV: You don’t want to know.
PBO: I don’t want to know ah?, okay.
SDV: I don’t want to tell you that I have a crush on the President. I’m not going to tell you that.
PBO: Oh well, I appreciate that. I can tell why you’re bad though.
RM: Mr. President, what are the ways in which you can sign up for coverage under Obamacare?
PBO: First of all, everybody who’s listening. If you have health insurance, you don’t have to worry about this. You already have health insurance, that’s great. But there are a lot of people who don’t have health insurance, especially in the Latino community. Latinos are most likely not to have health insurance. And the problem is if you get in an accident, if you get sick, or somebody in your family gets sick, you could end up being bankrupt. You could lose everything you have because you’re trying to pay off the medical bills. So you have until March 31st to get healthcare. You can sign up through a website, cuidadodesalud.gov or you can call a phone number, 1-800-318-2596, that’s 1-800-318-2596 or in person you can typically go to a community health clinic and find out where you can sign up.
RM: Mr. President, should mixed status families be afraid to sign up for coverage?
PBO: And the thing that I’ve really been trying to emphasize is, you are eligible if you are a U.S. citizen, or you’re a person who’s legally here. And just because another family member does not have documents, they cannot sign up for healthcare, but there is no sharing of this data or information with, you know, immigration officials. And so I don’t want people to be discouraged from going ahead and getting health insurance, even if it’s just for some of the members of their family. They need to know that immigration will have nothing to do with this process.
RM: Thank you very much.
RM: Mr. President, a lot of people are telling us to ask about the immigration reform. Also about a very important topic which is separation of families. We would like to come back with you, if you give us a few moments. Everyday approximately 1,000 people are being deported. I mean it’s not a secret that under your administration it’s been more than 2 million. Are you taking any steps to not separate these families anymore?
PBO: Well, the main step I’m trying to take is to make sure that we pass new laws so that we do not have to deport these folks at all. But in fact they can have a path to living here legally, and ultimately becoming citizens. You know, keep in mind that most of these deportations are actually at the border. So it’s people who are just being stopped. The reason that the numbers are high is because Congress doubled the number of ICE agents and custom border patrol. It’s not because this is something that I think is necessarily a kind thing or a helpful thing for many of these families. And that’s why I, knowing how painful it is for many people, want to make sure that we get comprehensive immigration reform done. We’ve gotten a bill passed through the Senate. The next step now is we got to get something through the House. And I know a lot of people sometimes say, well Obama could just do this without Congress. The problem is, is that there’s certain laws that I end up having to deal with coming out of Congress. I need a new law that puts everybody on a new legal footing. And we’ve got to keep the pressure on Congress to get that done.
RM: Thank you very much Mr. President.
SDV: Mr. President, I am a final view. I have voted for you twice. And I’m really afraid of, you’re almost leaving and I was just wondering if before you leave, is it going to be a “Reforma migratoria” (Immigration Reform)? or is it’s really…
PBO: I think we can get it done. Sylvia, I think that we have a chance to get it done. But we’ve got to stay focused on Congress. We’ve got to keep the pressure on. We can’t give up. Because I think sometimes people get so discouraged, the Republicans and Congress sometimes seems so stubborn, so resistant.
SDV: Yeah, we understand.
PBO: That then people say, okay, they’re not going to do it so let’s see if we can get the President to do something. I mean we’re reviewing all our policies to see if we can make some of them less harsh. And try to make sure that we’re, you know, applying the law in the most humane way possible. But as long as you’ve laws that say these folks do not have a chance to become legal, then it’s always going to be a painful thing for them. And families are going to go through difficulties. And the only way we’re going to solve it for all the people that, you know, are our friends and our neighbors and our coworkers and our classmates, the only way we’re going to solve it for all of them is to make sure that Congress gets this done. So, we’ve got to keep on pushing.
RM: Thank you Mr. President.
AM: Mr. President, I just have got two things to tell you. If Mexico and the United States go to Brazil and we win, you’re going to have to do tacos and tequila with us. Okay?
PBO: Let me say, first of all, that that’s not punishment to do tacos and tequila. I should get that if the Americans win. You have to give me tacos and tequila. You’ll have to send them here to the White House.
AM: And another thing, just because you’re cool and you give us a “Reforma Migratoria” (Immigration Reform), I’m going to vote for you in the next elections too.
PBO: Well, you know what? Michelle is not going to let me run anymore. She says, it’s time for me to spend more, give her more attention and take her on nice trips. And…
AM: Give her tequila shots and she’ll be relaxed.
PBO: Yeah, you know, things like that.
RM: Mr. President, what are the websites where you can register for the Affordable Care Act?
AM: Can you give us one last thing like you normally do? “Thank you, thank you very much, that sounds very good.”
PBO: Thank you, thank you very much. Is that how you like it?
RM: Thank you, Mr. Obama.
PBO: We appreciate you guys. Thank you. Make sure that everybody who is listening, make sure to check it out, sign up for healthcare. Otherwise if you don’t do it before the end of the month, you can’t do it ‘till November.
RM: Thank you so much President for your time. Thank you President.
PBO: Gracias. I appreciate you guys. Bye-bye.