Latinos Who Vote
The Chron has a lengthy piece on the Latino vote and the upcoming City of H-Town elections. Here is a part:
Councilmember (Robert) Gallegos and former Metro Chair (Gilbert) Garcia both jumped into the crowded mayoral race earlier this year. So far, however, they have faced challenges with name recognition, according to recent polling, lagging behind longtime officeholders state Sen. John Whitmire and U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee.
A poll conducted by the University of Houston’s Hobby School of Public Affairs showed that by July, more than half of likely voters were unfamiliar with Gallegos and Garcia, compared to 6 percent for Jackson Lee and 23 percent for Whitmire.
The early polling results indicated strong leads for Whitmire and Jackson Lee, with 34 percent and 32 percent of likely voters favoring them, respectively. Garcia and Gallegos trailed significantly, with only 3 percent and 2 percent. Even among Hispanic likely voters, Whitmire leads with 39 percent, followed by Jackson Lee at 16 percent, with all other 12 candidates garnering a combined 24 percent.
Meanwhile, several prominent local Hispanic officials have thrown their support behind the two frontrunners, prompting Gallegos and Garcia to express frustration with the lack of cohesion within the Hispanic political community.
Whitmire secured endorsements from Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia, state Sen. Carol Alvarado, and state Rep. Ana Hernandez, to name a few, while Jackson Lee received the backing of Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo.
“You have two Latino candidates running for mayor, but not one of us has gotten Latino elected officials to endorse us,” Gallegos said. “When they’re on their campaign trail, they all said we need more Latinos and Latinas elected, but when it comes down to this mayor’s race with two Latinos running for mayor, where are they?”
Garcia said Hispanic officials should at least have waited longer to see if strong Hispanic candidates would enter the race before making endorsement decisions.
“That is a tremendous disservice to the Latino community because it’s incumbent upon them to look and try to recruit good Hispanic candidates to support for mayor,” Garcia said. “Ultimately, we will have a Hispanic mayor because the numbers are going to become overwhelming. It’s better to start grooming those leaders and working with them now.”
Here is the entire article: Houston elections: Hispanic residents short on representation, turnout (houstonchronicle.com).
Commentary is not going to get into how Latino elected officials make their decisions on who to endorse. I am sure working and personal relationships, records, positions on the issues, pathways to victory, campaign budgets, and electability are factors that are considered. Maybe they believe their endorsed candidate would be a very good mayor. Not just the spelling of one’s last name.
Everyone knows Commentary is working for the John Whitmire for Mayor campaign.
The featured photo is Sen. Alvarado with Team Whitmire.
From the Chron:
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