Latinos | KNKX

Latinos

Isaac Lopez, 19, right, and his mother, Antonia Zamorano, center, work in a Tacos El Tajin food truck in Seattle's South Lake Union neighborhood. Isaac's father, Thomas Lopez, died from COVID-19 on April 2, 2020.
Ted S. Warren / Associated Press

By the time Thomas Lopez died of COVID-19 on April 2, social distancing had taken hold in Washington. But the disparate effects the disease was having on the state’s Latino population was not yet clear.

The data that have emerged since then are stark. Latinos only make up about 13 percent of Washington's population. But they make up more than a third of the state's COVID-19 cases. 

President Donald Trump’s immigration policies created a sense of urgency at the annual Latino Legislative Day the Washington state Capitol Monday. Several hundred activists converged in Olympia, Washington, with a message for state lawmakers.

Hilda Solis, former U.S. labor secretary, took the stage at a meeting of the Hispanic caucus in Philadelphia this week and immediately launched into Spanish.

Solis, who is the first Latina to have served in a Cabinet position, issued a ringing endorsement of the vice presidential candidate on the Democratic ticket.

"We are here to support Tim Kaine, our next vice president," she said. "Que habla muy bien Español. Mejor que yo!" (Who speaks good Spanish, she said, better than I do.)

They were gathered in a warehouse just outside downtown Cleveland.

Hundreds of feet of canvas was piled on the floor and some of it — painted to look like a brick wall — was hung from the ceiling for it to finish drying.

It's no secret that Donald Trump is struggling to woo Hispanics voters. He's currently polling worse with Latinos than Mitt Romney in 2012 (In that election, Romney captured just 27 percent of the Hispanic vote.).

But on Wednesday night, the Trump campaign might have a chance to shift its messaging ever-so-slightly when three Hispanic Republicans take center stage during prime time. Two of them, former GOP presidential candidates, are familiar faces from the primary season: Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Florida Sen. Marco (who will deliver a video message).

Donald Trump has energized millions of Republican voters this primary season with his tough talk of building a wall along the Mexico border and deporting people who entered the country illegally.

But, that same language could have an unintentional side effect in a general election and energize legal immigrants to become citizens before November so they can vote against Trump.

Jose Lovos moved to the U.S. legally 20 years ago from the war-torn country of El Salvador. These days, he lives in Virginia with his wife and three kids.

What exactly did we learn about the Latino vote this weekend? Take your pick of headlines.

  • "The entrance polls said Nevada's Latinos voted for Bernie Sanders. That's unlikely." (Vox)
  • "Did Bernie Sanders really just win the Hispanic vote in Nevada? There's good reason to think that, yes, he might have." (Washington Post)