Dec 15, 2018

Record number of Latinos gearing up to take office in January

Sylvia Garcia (D-Texas), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D-Fla.) standing with freshman members of Congress. Photo: Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images

A record number of Latinos will be taking public office in January, the Associated Press reports, after a wave of voters turned out in the 2018 midterms.

The big picture: They're "demonstrating the growing clout of the 57 million Latinos" living in the U.S., AP reports. Latinos make up 18% of the U.S. population, but have historically low turnout. Per AP, the the "rhetoric from President Donald Trump about immigrants" spurred voter turnout.

  • It's a year of firsts, AP reports, with the youngest woman ever elected, Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; Rep.-elects Veronica Escobar and Silvia Garcia, the first Latinas to represent Texas; and Rep.-elect Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, the first Ecuadorian native to be elected.
  • In the midterms, 67% of Hispanic voters said they disapproved of how Trump was handling the presidency. One-third of voters approved.

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus, which will be led by Texas Democrat Joaquin Castro, plans to focus on Puerto Rico reconstruction, immigration reform, lowering the cost of health care and more, per AP.

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