Tom Pérez Says Dems are Targeting Latinx With On-The-Ground Efforts -- Will It Work?
DNC Chairman Tom Pérez is pushing back on recent reports that say Democrats may not have done enough or spent enough to get the more than 29 million Latinos who are eligible to vote to the polls for the 2018 midterms. Pérez says that the party has invested in its ground game, helping to pay for 20 organizers in communities, which include the Latino communities in El Paso, TX; Minneapolis, MN; Salt Lake City, UT; Las Cruces, NM; and Oklahoma City, OK. The party has also focused on and invested in engaging the Puerto Ricans who relocated from the island to Florida, Pennsylvania, and other places after Hurricane Maria. The DNC has focused on hiring local organizers from the state where they are working and Pérez said much of the party’s $25 million investment “has gone to people in the field, not Beltway consultants,” because the party had to go directly to communities. Pérez also said he's been deliberate about making stops in Latino-heavy areas. “Folks understand they are not only voting for themselves but also for community," he said. "We are putting hope on the ballot.” Many in the community say the efforts are a good start and are hopeful they are working, since the Latinx community’s political behaviors and preferences -- which are often lumped into one monolith -- are influenced by age, origin, education, and family’s immigration history. “In Texas, for example, Hispanics have not always voted as strongly Democratic. And Cuban-Americans, traditionally, have tended to vote Republican; though that might be shifting for younger Cubans. Protestant and evangelical Hispanics, they also lean Republican,” William Frey, a demographer with the Brookings Institution, told the NYT. We’ll find out in 13 days if the DNC’s efforts have paid off. More here.