Julián Castro calls Latinos to action as he moves toward 2020 run

first_imgJulian Castro The hints of a 2020 run keep coming. This week, he and his twin brother Joaquín Castro, a US congressman, are stopping by Stephen Colbert’s Late Show for a chat. And after meeting with potential supporters in New York, Castro spoke at the first-ever Hispanic leadership summit at the UN on Monday.If his words did not yet sound like a stump speech, they were at least a call to action.“In the last couple of years, I can’t think of another community that has been used as a punching bag as much as the Latino community has,” Castro said. “We must be more intentional than ever when it comes to supporting public policy that could dismantle those barriers that still exist to our full democratic participation, and helping to elect folks – both Latino and non-Latino – that will represent well communities of color.” Share on Facebook Share on Pinterest Share on Facebook Cory Booker tests 2020 waters with early dip into New Hampshire Support The Guardian The relaxed tempo and casual nature of Castro’s delivery – he uses the word “folks” too many times to count – is familiar to an American public which often likes its politicians homespun. And much like his onetime boss Obama, Castro’s run would represent another attempt to break a glass ceiling – this time for American Latinos.The Hispanic leadership summit – organised by the We Are All Human foundation – gathered together leaders of US business, media and politics to discuss Hispanic representation across all these fields – and the need for greater and more varied voices at every level of US society. Attendees listened to debates about Hispanic business power, and their growing force as a voting demographic across the States.Castro’s presidential candidacy would give political representation to an estimated 58.9 million Hispanics who together constitute the largest racial or ethnic minority in the US. Of that population, the Pew Research Center estimates that 29 million were able to vote in 2018, comprising 12.8% of eligible voters.Historically, Latinos have a low turnout rate at the polls; in 2014, just over a quarter of eligible Latino voters cast a ballot. But that changed in 2018, when approximately 11% of Americans who went to the polls on election day were Latino. In US congressional races, more than two-thirds of Latinos voted Democratic.“These midterms showed that if Latinos are reached out to and if there are issues on the table that they feel passionately about, they will respond by voting,” Castro told the Guardian. “The Latino community in some ways could be more important than ever.”That doesn’t mean Castro is resting on his racial identity to mobilize a support base. He believes that political representation is not enough, and it is the policies that matter. US politics Democrats Read more This article is more than 7 months old Julián Castro speaks at the Hispanic leadership summit on Monday at the UN.Photograph: Courtesy We Are All Human / Eddie Tyler of Pilgramers.com Alexandra Villarreal Share on Twitter Wed 12 Dec 2018 11.19 EST Share via Email Sign up for the new US morning briefing Julián Castro calls Latinos to action as he moves toward 2020 run Share on LinkedIn First published on Wed 12 Dec 2018 06.00 EST US elections 2020center_img Texas news Since you’re here… … we have a small favour to ask. The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. 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Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Reuse this content It is no secret Castro has been acting a lot like someone who plans to seek the the White House. On Wednesday he announced the formation of an exploratory presidential committee – a technical step that allows him to begin raising funds.The former San Antonio mayor and secretary of housing and urban development (Hud) under Barack Obama has already held events with prospective donors for a 2020 campaign. He told Rolling Stone in October that he is “likely” to run.Among all of the speculated contenders in the 2020 presidential race, Castro will probably be the only prominent Latino Democrat. The 44-year-old has been a rising star in the Democratic party since he became mayor of one of the country’s largest cities in 2009. Three years later, he was the first Latino to give a keynote speech at the Democratic national convention. In 2016 the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, vetted him as a potential running mate. Shares232232 Julian Castro Democrat says the community needs people who will ‘produce good policies’ as he announces an exploratory committee Share on Messenger Read more Julián Castro may have the worst poker face in American politics as the Democratic party prepares for an intense contest to pick someone to try to defeat Donald Trump. Is he leaning one way on whether to announce a presidential bid in coming months? “Well, yeah,” he chuckled when asked the question at a UN gathering this week. Topics Share on Twitter The Latino community in some ways could be more important than everJulián Castro “We need more representation, but more than anything else, we need people who are going to produce good policies that benefit the Latino community,” Castro said.Already, he has ideas on which policies need to take precedence to help the US’s growing Latino demographic.“I believe that the number one thing that we need to focus on is education,” said Castro, who expanded pre-K and opened a college access center in San Antonio as mayor, and who at Hud worked to bring broadband to communities so that students would not fall behind without internet access. Castro said he will decide whether to run by the end of the year and announce his decision by early 2019. Regardless of his choice, he seems optimistic about 2020, when a “whole new generation of Democrats” will compete for their party’s nomination.“You’re going to have probably the most talented field that we’ve had in generations,” Castro said. “And that’s going to be fantastic for the Democratic party and for the country.” ‘The party could explode’: Democrats prepare for wild 2020 ride Share on WhatsApp This article is more than 7 months old Share via Emaillast_img read more