At Carlos Rosario School, one of our Washington, DC Affiliates, staffers have been working hard to register as many new voters as they can in advance of the 2016 election. Earlier this week, we shared with you responses from one of those newly registered, Jennifer Zoeller. She is also a brand new citizen who will be casting her very first vote in a U.S. election next month!
Now, in a new video, our Affiliate has produced a brand new video highlighting why other new Americans will be voting next month. Watch the video and then let us know why you vote!
While much about this election season has confounded expectations, one electoral forecast is happening as predicted: The Latino electorate continues to grow rapidly, and Latino voters are poised to shape the results of contests up and down the ballot. Parties and candidates that do not seriously compete for Latino voters’ support, or whose engagement is limited and last-minute, do so at their own peril.
Despite some who insist that “Latino” means “immigrant,” we know that more than three out of four Latinos in our country are U.S. citizens. Between the 2000 and 2012 presidential elections, the number of Latinos voting grew by 89%.
Yet there is still much work to do to ensure that the Latino community’s voice at the polls is as big as our numbers and our contributions to this country. We know that in presidential elections, more than 80% of registered Latinos turn out to vote. We need to do more as a country, to reach the estimated 12 million eligible Latinos who are not yet registered. The National Council of La Raza is working with its Affiliate organizations to work on closing that gap.
During an election cycle when many in the Latino community feel scapegoated or ignored, the best response remains to roll up our sleeves and raise the community’s voice. Voting is one of the tools we have. We must use it in this and every election whether it be local, state or national wide. Casting a vote for every position on that ballot because they all affect the lives of our families, our communities, and our country.
By Janet Murguía, President and CEO, NCLR
(Originally posted in Newsweek)
As we embark on Hispanic Heritage Month, and ahead of the first presidential debate, it is no secret how different this election cycle has been for many Latinos in America. None of us anticipated the extent our community would be the face, and in many ways the target, of the most prominent issue of this election season: immigration.
Led by Donald Trump, the tone of 2016’s immigration discussion has managed to cast aspersions well beyond those personally affected by immigration policy to include attacks on the Latino community as a whole. From denigrating Mexican Americans as “criminals, rapists, and drug dealers” to questioning the integrity of an American judge based solely on his Latino heritage, Trump has demonized our community and advanced the dark and baseless notion that Latinos are a threat, and not a strength, to our country.
If you thought Latino voters were only mildly interested in the 2016 election, think again. In a new text message poll of the NCLR Action Network, the vast majority of those who responded said they were “enthusiastic” about voting in this year’s elections.
In the survey of more than 700 people, we found that 653 were registered voters. Of those polled, 74 percent said they were excited to vote this year, compared to 26 percent who said they were not. Continue reading →
By Janet Hernandez, Senior Civic Engagement Project Manager, NCLR
Maya Correa turned 18 in May and can’t wait to vote in her first presidential election on November 8.
“I am so excited vote this year; it will be the first time I’ll be voting to elect a president” said Maya. She is one of about one million Latino citizens who turn 18 every year and become eligible to vote. In Idaho nearly 45 percent of the Latino population is under 19, according to the Census Bureau, showing the potential for the youth vote in the state.
“I registered to vote because I want to have a voice on what’s happening right now,” Maya said when asked what motivated her to register. “I know there are a lot of people who can’t. I want to vote because this is a valuable power you have been granted. I want to elect people who are thinking about issues that are important to me and my community such as immigration reform.”