Aunt must be deported if violating laws: Obama (Dura Lex...)
- November 4, 2008
DEMOCRATIC presidential hopeful Barack Obama has suggested in a television interview that his Boston-based Kenyan aunt, found to be living illegally in the United States, should be deported if she broke the law.
CBS News has released an advance transcript of the interview to be broadcast today.
"If she is violating laws, those laws have to be obeyed," Senator Obama told CBS when asked if he would support deporting his late father's sister, Zeituni Onyango, to Kenya.
News that Ms Onyango, 56, was living illegally in Boston broke at the weekend, just days before the election in which Senator Obama faces off against Republican John McCain.
"We're a nation of laws," Senator Obama told CBS. "Obviously that doesn't lessen my concern for her; I haven't been able to be in touch with her. But I'm a strong believer you have to obey the law," he said.
Aides said Senator Obama, 47, had not been in touch with his aunt since his Senate inauguration ceremony in 2004.
The aides questioned the timing of the leak, and said the campaign was returning $US265 ($A395) that Ms Onyango donated to her nephew's White House bid. Foreigners who are not US residents cannot donate to US political campaigns.
Ms Onyango — part of an extended family on Senator Obama's father's side spread across Kenya, the US and Europe — lives in Boston even though an immigration judge reportedly rejected her asylum request four years ago.
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