Three high-profile Latino politicians are helping to oversee a new super PAC whose aim is to increase the number of Hispanics in elected office and combat the use of inflammatory anti-immigrant rhetoric by numskull politicians.
The Latino Victory Project, a nonpartisan political organization founded by Democratic Party Finance Chair Henry Munoz and actress Eva Longoria, announced that Texas Rep. Joaquin Castro, New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will co-chair the super PAC.
In September, the group released an ad titled “Republicans are talking, #LatinosListen” that criticized the rhetoric used by some Republican presidential candidates. In the video, Latinos recited actual quotes from the candidates.
Latino Victory Project spokesperson Pili Tobar said the super PAC’s main goal is to support Latino candidates.
“A big part is to elect Latinos to different positions from the local to the national level,” she said in an interview. But the super PAC also intends “to aggressively push back on candidates who are bringing up issues that hurt our community. Within that category, obviously is hateful and anti-immigrant rhetoric and demagoguing our community.”
She would not comment on how much money the super PAC plans to raise.
Longoria also recently launched a campaign to underscore the accomplishments of Latino families by urging people to come forward and tell their personal stories.
The “Firsts Campaign” highlights Latinos who were the first members of their families to graduate high school or college, open their own business, or vote in a U.S. election.
The group is planning to join other Latino organizations in a “my country, my vote” rally in Colorado on Wednesday, the day of the third Republican debate in Boulder. The event will kick off a 12-month Latino voter registration in a state where Latinos are a crucial voting bloc.