Fri. May 24th, 2024

Democrats see recent abortion rulings as an opening to galvanize Latino voters

By 37ci3 Apr13,2024

Democrats see recent state court decisions on abortion as a galvanizing moment to mobilize Latino voters in key states and battleground House districts with a message about personal liberties and access to reproductive health care.

Just this week the Arizona Supreme Court ruled A week after the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the 1864 abortion ban was enforceable is allowed a six-week abortion ban will come into effect. Combined with a Texas state law banning abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, that puts many of the nation’s most heavily Latino House battlegrounds in the middle of a nationwide fight over abortion policy.

Republicans they tried to capture more Latino voters on their side over the years, and since 2020, support for former President Donald Trump among Latinos went up. And for a while Latino voters come from all different backgrounds, some of this change has long been associated with high levels of social conservatism and Catholicism in Hispanic communities.

But Democratic candidates and political strategists who spoke to NBC News argued that perceptions about the impact of Catholicism on Latino communities and how Latino voters view abortion are misconceived.

“Latino voters are not monolithic,” Victoria McGroary, executive director of BOLD PAC, the Democratic-aligned campaign arm of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, told NBC News. He added: “It’s basically freedom. And that’s something that … Latino voters really, really care about.

“Listen, Latino voters may have different personal ideas about what they might do in specific circumstances. But what is extremely clear among them is that they do not want politicians involved in this decision in any way, shape or form,” McGroary added.

Building abortion and health care together

Many Hispanic Americans openly support abortion access and reproductive rights. An Axios/Ipsos poll was conducted in partnership with Telemundo released earlier this week It found that 68% of Latinos in the United States oppose making abortion illegal at any time, under any circumstances.

That’s not what’s on the books in terms of state bans in Arizona, where a law recently upheld by the state Supreme Court bans abortions from the moment of conception but still includes an exception to protect the life of the mother. (Arizona’s law remains pending additional court cases.) Texas and Florida’s six-week bans include a similar exception, while Florida also has a wide window for cases of rape or consanguinity.

But the poll’s findings explain why a number of Democratic activists and candidates see the issue as an opportunity to make their case, framing abortion restrictions not just as bans but as barriers to basic health care.

In Texas’ 15th District, where the district is nearly 80% Latino, Democrat Michelle Vallejo is running for a second term against GOP Rep. Monica De La Cruz after losing by nearly 9 points in 2022. Vallejo told NBC News that “our families and constituents are paying attention to this because it’s affecting people in their own homes.”

“We are a region that lacks basic health services. Here, we’re a heavily insured region, and — I mean, if people have insurance, many, many don’t — it’s a very, very real issue,” Vallejo said.

De La Cruz’s campaign did not respond to NBC News’ request for comment.

Another Democrat in the congressional rematch, former Arizona Sen. Kirsten Engel, echoed Vallejo in accusing her opponent, GOP Rep. Juan Ciscomani, of “allowing your rights to be curtailed … for voting to limit medication abortion. many Latinos and Hispanic women, especially those living in our rural areas with less access to health care, doctors and clinics.

In response to questions from NBC News, Ciscomani’s campaign said the congressman “opposes a total ban at both the state and federal level. That’s why he called for Arizona’s territorial ban to be overturned. Juan is where most Arizonans are – he supports the 15-week law with reasonable exceptions. He believes that we can support women and new life.”

Vallejo often refers to a conversation he had with his grandmother at the beginning of his political career, saying that “growing up in my house, it was something we didn’t talk about. We didn’t talk about reproductive health.”

He added:[My grandmother and I] agreed that only women and doctors should be made [reproductive] decisions. Politicians should not be anywhere participates in making these decisions for us.”

An Axios/Ipsos survey conducted in partnership with Telemundo reinforced this view.

Sixty-seven percent of Hispanic or Latino adults surveyed said laws and policies based on their religious views oppose government policymakers.

McGrory said that Latino families’ origins often play a greater role in shaping their views on reproductive freedom than their personal beliefs or religion.

“Many Latino voters in this country come from backgrounds where freedoms are very limited and regularly under attack. And they know that’s not true in America,” McGroary said.

A major issue in congressional campaigns

Democrats across the country plan to make abortion policy a key part of their campaign again this year, after proving to be a motivating issue in 2022.

An internal poll of House Democrats this week, obtained by NBC News, found an overwhelming majority of respondents in battleground states thought unified Republican control of the House, Senate and White House would lead Republicans to impose significant additional restrictions on abortion. .

One House Republican strategist told NBC News that Republican candidates have been “crystal clear” on their positions on abortion, pushing back on the idea that it will affect the outcome of this fall’s election.

The strategist pointed to statements released this week by Ciscomani and Arizona GOP Rep. David Schweikert, both of whom opposed the state Supreme Court’s decision.

“They are retreating [the ruling]and that’s part of the formula for us to win the issue,” the strategist said, adding, “We have a reasonable position and the Democrats don’t.”

Similarly, Kari Lake, the presumptive GOP Senate candidate in Arizona, said again after the state Supreme Court ruled that she would not uphold the federal abortion ban and Arizona’s ban.

And on Friday, former President Donald Trump rebuked the Arizona Supreme Court, writing on Truth Social: “The Arizona Supreme Court went too far in its Abortion decisions by adopting and upholding an inconsistent 1864 law.”

But Democrats in Arizona say this week’s state Supreme Court decision sent shock waves through the community, which has already sparked more organizing in Latino communities, Democratic candidates and a ballot initiative that would make abortion a basic right in the state.

“There is a lot of shock. It’s unbelievable,” he said Raquel Teran, former chairwoman of the Arizona Democratic Party and current candidate for a Democratic congressional seat in the Phoenix area. “A lot of people are confused. Many people feel. “Many people feel ready to organize.”

For women of all backgrounds in Arizona, the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade in 2022 is no longer hypothetical, Engel added.

“Voters in Arizona are seeing what it means to allow states to have abortions. And if it wasn’t clear what that might mean before, it’s very clear today,” he said.

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By 37ci3

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