I’m going to keep it short today because there’s some buzz at the Democratic convention I want to talk about.
As political conventions go this is the morning that DNC delegates and convention goers are feeling the endorphin hangover. The Democrats put on a good show, began healing their divisions, reclaimed the mantle of unabashed patriotism that had been missing for decades, and launched a campaign for the next 100 days as well as they could have hoped for.
There’s still a lot to unpack, though, but we can safely say that for now Latino voters are solidly on Clinton’s side. But we can also say that there were mixed feelings among some Latinos at the Democratic convention. I’ll get to that, but to set the stage here’re the results of an Economic Values Survey done by the Public Religion Research Institute. The numbers begin to explain how U.S. Latinos can be social conservatives but lean liberal on the economy.
62 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos who think that one of the big problems in this country is that we don’t give everyone an equal chance in life.
69 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos who agree that the government should take care of people who can’t take care of themselves.
75 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos que agree that the government should guarantee health insurance for all citizens.
78 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos que agree that the government should do more to reduce the gap between the rich and poor.
70 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos que prefer to see the government promote economic growth with spending on education and infrastructure.
70 – The percentage of U.S. Latinos who favor increasing the minimum wage to $15 per hour.
Maybe it’s because Donald Trump has been doing the heavy lifting, pushing Latinos farther to the Clinton side with his emphatic intolerance. Maybe it’s because U.S. Latinos, as today’s numbers prove, are naturally inclined to the Democrats’ economic policies and vision of the future. The feeling in the DNC is that Latinos are, by and large, a sure bet. Maybe that’s why some Latinos leave the big party in Philadelphia with a tinge of resentment mixed with their happy peptides.
►It begins with prime time speaker inclusion, or lack of.
“I’m really not trying to stir up trouble. We’ve had enough heckling for one convention already, but please don’t tell me the Clinton campaign thinks having Tim Kaine deliver a few great lines in fluent Spanish substitutes for having any Latino politicians at all with prime time speaking roles? I’m not Latino, but it just really seems like a missed opportunity, if none of the prime time speakers will be Latino. When your opponent is talking about mass genocide, deporting 11 million people, you make that a lot easier for voters to go along with if Latinos are invisible. Out of sight, out of mind.”
By my count there was one.
Rep. Xavier Becerra spoke in the coveted and most visible prime time slot last night. It wasn’t a bad slot given that the evening was a tee-up to the main speech of the convention. Still, I can see where Latinos may have felt slighted.
Then there was LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, who talked about how Latinos fared in the Obama administration: