Nevada Assemblywoman Selena Torres: Latinos Deserve Better Than Trump’s Failed Record

Today, Vice President Biden released his agenda for the Latino community. In contrast, Donald Trump has spent the past four years demonizing immigrants and holding back progress for Latinos. 

Nevada State Assemblywoman Selena Torres released the following statement: 

“From the campaign trail to the White House, Donald Trump has relentlessly attacked the health, safety, and economic security of the Latino community, while using us as little more than a political prop to sow division and spread fear. In 2016, Trump promised Nevadans he would be the ‘greatest champion’ for Latinos. Instead, Trump has fought to put Dreamers in limbo, jeopardize representation for undocumented immigrants in the census, and dismantle the Affordable Care Act, which would strip away health coverage from the most vulnerable among us. Now, his failed pandemic response has left Latinos in the crosshairs of the virus, as we face higher infection rates and staggering job losses. Latinos in Nevada and across the country deserve a president who will invest in our communities and fight to give us a fair shot — and that’s exactly what Joe Biden will do.”

BACKGROUND ON TRUMP’S DISASTROUS RECORD WITH THE LATINO COMMUNITY

Trump promised he would be the “greatest champion” for the Latino community and would “fight to help millions of Latinos trapped in poverty.” [Trump Campaign Rally, Reno NV, 10/5/16] 

In reality, Trump’s failed response to the pandemic made the economic and public health fallout worse, particularly for Latinos who are bearing the brunt of the coronavirus crisis.

  • According to the CDC, Latino residents have been three times as likely to contract COVID-19 as white residents, and twice as likely to die.
  • In June 2020, unemployment for Latino workers hit 14.5%. Meanwhile, the numbers of working Latino business owners dropped over 30% from February to April.  
  • Trump failed to respond to the racial disparities being exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis. Even after Congressional action sought to force the Trump Administration to improve data collection on racial disparities in coronavirus cases, it failed to do so — and its scattershot approach has hampered an effective response to the crisis for communities of color. 

Trump’s policies have undercut efforts to expand the American dream and affordable housing for communities of color, while boosting banks and lenders.

  • As of 2017, Latino individuals represented about 18% of the U.S. population, but made up 20% of all those who received HUD rental assistance and 30% of all low-income renters. Despite this, Trump has called for drastic cuts to subsidized housing, and for changes that could raise rents for low-income families. 
  • Analysis shows that the Trump Administration’s proposal to roll back disparate impact claims will make it harder to fight housing discrimination under the Fair Housing Act, while under Trump’s CFPB, fair lending enforcement orders against mortgage lenders has dropped off. 

Trump’s economic policies have failed to help close the racial wealth gap, protect workers of color, or support businesses owned by Latinos and people of color.

  • Latino Americans were disproportionately left out of the benefits from Trump’s tax law in 2018. The average tax cut for Latino households was less than half that of the average white household. 
  • As president, Trump threatened to veto a minimum wage hike and proposed a tip-pooling rule that could undercut earnings and job opportunities for workers of color. 
  • Trump’s budgets have called for steep cuts or the full elimination of the Minority Business Development Agency, a critical agency that helps promote the growth of businesses owned by people of color.

Despite claiming that he alone could fix immigration, Trump has waged an all-out assault on immigrant rights throughout his presidency, while repeatedly using divisive and dehumanizing language to describe immigrants. 

  • Trump has terrorized immigrants and damaged the United States’ world standing by separating children from their families and locking them in cages. 
  • Meanwhile, Trump’s decision to terminate the DACA program put Dreamers’ future in limbo until the Supreme Court stepped in — including roughly 13,000 Dreamers who call Nevada home.

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