Midterm elections are upon us. And we guess—at least we hope!—that you have been thinking about that.
So, let’s see:Maybe you consider yourself a progressive Latinx. You care about your community. You know about the issues facing the Latinx community, or at least, you have a good idea of them. But are you showing up to vote? Unfortunately, too many Latinx are still absent at the polls, and too many are misled by misinformation campaigns.
We all know that every election is important, but this one, where the House is hanging by a thread, is especially important. Because, as we have experienced in the past, having a Democratic president with a Republican majority in Congress means an eternal deadlock!
Remember this: The democratic agenda is the only one that has programs with Latinx in mind, and that’s working on legislation that is going to benefit Latinx directly, beyond what it has accomplished in the last months already.
Just to mention a few of these of achievements:
- The unemployment rate for Hispanic workers fell from 8.6 percent in January to 5.9 percent in October.
- The rescue plan’s expansion of the child tax credit; after the first round of such tax credits were distributed in the summer, the monthly poverty rate for Latinx went down from 22.9 percent in June to 16.8 percent in July.
- The infrastructure deal, which will create millions of jobs.
- This administration has appointed a historically diverse cabinet and administration that will help advance the Hispanic agenda.
But we need more, we need a democratic majority in congress to help move plans like these and more forward. We must act. And it’s very easy, we just need to vote.
Over 50 percent of eligible Latinx voters participated in the 2020 election, which is great! But it also means that the other half DID NOT VOTE! And at this point, every single vote count—our community cannot afford to lose even one seat.
So, are you ready to vote? Are you prepared to convince those who say they will skip going to the polls that they need to vote? Or are you still on the fence?
We’re giving you a few good reasons why you should vote in this midterm election. There are more of course, but any of these should be motivating enough. Tell us what you think.
Latinx are, in many cases, drivers of the American economy.
Thanks to the Democratic agenda, a $1 trillion package infrastructure bill that will create 2 million jobs in the next 10 years just passed. Imagine what they can do with 2 more years of a democratic majority?!
Although the Hispanic population is the second-fastest-growing ethnic group in the country, the Latinx community has the lowest rate of health insurance coverage (Forbes). Because of this, they are also one of the ethnic groups least likely to have access to quality healthcare.
Health insurance is one of progressive candidates’ most important issues, as they all know how critical it is in this country. Many Latinx congresspeople are running on platforms that promote Medicare For All, a bill introduced by Pramila Jayapal, which will keep working families from either not getting medical care they need or hosting fundraisers to pay for it.
Let’s help them and do whatever small things we can do, like voting in the midterms!
3- Women’s Rights
The Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA): is a federal legislation that will protect the right to access abortion care throughout the United States.
It would ensure a person’s right to choose an abortion and the authority of healthcare professionals to provide the procedure.
This Act is profoundly important, not just to women but to all Americans who value the right to control their own bodies.
However, Senate Republicans blocked the bill that preserved the right to have an abortion. So today we are still fighting for this right. For women and for men too, because men have mothers, sisters, or daughters that may have to risk their lives because they don’t have the law on their side. Let’s fight for our women!
4 – DACA
DACA is a policy that has been fought for by immigrant youth.Created by the Obama Administration in 2012, it protects eligible undocumented young people who came to the United States when they were children from deportation.
It provides invaluable protection from deportation since even people that lawfully live in the US could be sent to a country they don’t know and whose language they don’t speak. Additionally, DACA recipients may also be eligible for work authorization and a social security number, among other necessary rights.
Now reinstated, nobody knows what will come next for the DACA program. But REMEMBER that on July 16, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas held that the DACA policy is illegal, and some groups would like to see DACA terminated.
DACA is an immigration policy created through executive action. Therefore, the program can be changed again by current or future administrations if they do so lawfully.
These are only a handful of the things that reflect on our daily lives, and we most definitely have the power to shape our future.
As Maria Martinez—who has dedicated her life to Latinx organizing at state and national level—says, “Having control and a majority of Congress is crucial ”.
She had this and many fascinating things to say about the midterm elections and our role in them. Listen to her in the latest episode of our LatinXYZ Podcast and tell us what you think!