Jun 6, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Ex-DACA recipient wins New Mexico primary

Cindy Nava.

Courtesy of Cindy Nava.

One of the first former DACA recipients to receive a White House presidential appointment won the Democratic primary on Tuesday for a New Mexico state senate seat.

The big picture: Cindy Nava was one of many Latinas to win legislative primaries in New Mexico, where the statehouse is set to become majority women.

  • She is part of the Democrats' progressive wing that is emphasizing abortion rights and paid family leave.
  • Nava could become one of the first former DACA recipients to win an election.

Zoom in: Once an undocumented immigrant from Mexico who worked without pay in the New Mexico Legislature for a decade, Nava stepped down from her position as the senior policy adviser to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development secretary.

  • She got involved in politics immediately after high school and worked in the New Mexico Statehouse on behalf of Democratic lawmakers. She couldn't get paid because she was undocumented.
  • She eventually enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and became a U.S. citizen through marriage.

What we're watching: Nava will face off against Republican Audrey Trujillo in the November general election.

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