Yesli Vega, a Hispanic and the newly selected Republican nominee to represent Virginia’s 7th Congressional District, says she is frustrated over efforts by the Democratic Party to pander to the Hispanic community and insists Democrats have “lost touch” with voters seeking change.
Vega, a longtime law enforcement officer in the state, spoke to Fox News Digital Wednesday, the day after her primary victory, about her mission heading into the general election and why she believes Hispanics are beginning to side with some ideas being offered by Republican candidates in several races across the country.
“You have a Democrat Party that has completely lost touch with the Hispanic community,” Vega said.
Learn More about Prince William County Supervisor Yesli Vega’s campaign in the Virginia 7th Congressional District by going to her website: https://yeslivega.com
Shifts in the demographics of the two parties’ supporters — taking place before our eyes — are arguably the biggest political story of our time.
The big picture: Republicans are becoming more working class and a little more multiracial. Democrats are becoming more elite and a little more white.
Why it matters: Democrats’ hopes for retaining power rest on nonwhite voters remaining a reliable part of the party’s coalition. Democrats’ theory of the case collapses if Republicans make even incremental gains with those voters.
- Even small inroads with Hispanic voters could tip a number of Democratic-held swing seats to the GOP.
What the data show: Democrats are statistically tied with Republicans among Hispanics on the generic congressional ballot, according to a New York Times-Siena College poll out this week. Dems held a 47-point edge with Hispanics during the 2018 midterms.
- An NBC News poll in April found Democrats held a 38-point lead among women with college degrees — up from 10 points from 2010. Democrats lost ground with nearly every other demographic group tested in the survey.
- Nearly every House pickup in the 2020 election came from a woman or non-white challenger. The GOP’s ability to win back a House majority this year rests on the success of candidates breaking the party’s typical mold.
What’s happening: Democratic strategists say the party’s biggest vulnerability is assuming that the priorities of progressive activists are the same as those of working-class voters.
- Progressive activists led the push to cut police budgets. Communities of color have borne the brunt of higher crime.
- Hispanics living on the U.S.-Mexico border are more likely to favor tougher border security measures that Republicans have championed.
- The recall of liberal school board members and a district attorney in San Francisco was fueled by disillusioned Asian-American Democrats.
About a quarter of voting members (23%) of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate are racial or ethnic minorities, making the 117th Congress the most racially and ethnically diverse in history. There has been a long-running trend toward higher numbers of non-White lawmakers on Capitol Hill: This is the sixth Congress to break the record set by the one before it.
Overall, 124 lawmakers today identify as Black, Hispanic, Asian/Pacific Islander or Native American, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of data from the Congressional Research Service. This represents a 97% increase over the 107th Congress of 2001-03, which had 63 minority members.
Among today’s senators and representatives, the overwhelming majority of racial and ethnic minority members are Democrats (83%), while 17% are Republicans. This represents a shift from the last Congress, when just 10% of non-White lawmakers were Republicans. Our analysis reflects the 532 voting members of Congress seated as of Jan. 26, 2021.
Although recent Congresses have continued to set new highs for racial and ethnic diversity, they have still been disproportionately White when compared with the overall U.S. population. Non-Hispanic White Americans account for 77% of voting members in the new Congress, considerably larger than their 60% share of the U.S. population overall. This gap hasn’t narrowed with time: In 1981, 94% of members of Congress were White, compared with 80% of the U.S. population.
In the House of Representatives, however, representation of some racial and ethnic groups is now on par with their share of the total population. For example, 13% of House members are Black, about equal to the share of Black Americans. And Native Americans now make up about 1% of both the House and the U.S. population.
Other racial and ethnic groups in the House are somewhat less represented relative to their share of the population. The share of Hispanics in the U.S. population (19%) is about twice as high as it is in the House (9%). Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders together account for 6% of the national population and 3% of House members.
This analysis includes four representatives who are counted under more than one racial or ethnic identity: Rep. Robert Scott, D-Va., is counted as Black and Asian. Reps. Antonio Delgado and Ritchie Torres, both New York Democrats, are listed as Black and Hispanic. Rep. Marilyn Strickland, D-Wash., is both the first Black lawmaker to represent the state and one of the first Korean American women to be elected to Congress. Native Hawaiian Rep. Kai Kahele (D-Hawaii) is counted with the Native American lawmakers. Portuguese American members are not included in the Hispanic count. READ MORE
By Katherine Schaeffer | Pew Research Center
(Image credit: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images | Image/article Link: Here)
HELOTES, Texas—Last spring, having just retired from Congress, Will Hurd was feeling adrift. He had agreed to write a book, telling his remarkable life story and diagnosing a malfunctioning political system, all while teasing out a run for the presidency in 2024, but Hurd struggled with an underlying anxiety. For the first time in his adult life, the guy who’d climbed so quickly—from college class president to star CIA operative to lone Black Republican in the House—didn’t know his next move. Finally, Hurd sat down with his nearly 90-year-old father and shared his concerns.
“William, I can’t give any advice on what you should do, because I don’t understand any of these things,” Bob Hurd told his youngest son. “But I know what you shouldn’t do. Don’t be desperate. Because when you’re desperate, you make bad decisions.”
The former congressman tells me this story on the back patio of El Chaparral restaurant, one of his favorite haunts, in suburban San Antonio. We’re drinking Ranch Water—tequila and lime juice over ice, with a splash of mineral seltzer—and comparing notes on his book, American Reboot, which splices together riveting tales that help illuminate his views of a Republican Party that’s rotting from the top down. But the book doesn’t contain the story about this father-son talk. Rather, the anecdote surfaces organically when I ask Hurd about his brutal indictment of the GOP and how that has changed his relationships with the likes of Kevin McCarthy and Elise Stefanik, party leaders whom he once considered close personal friends. READ MORE
(Image credit: LeAnn Mueller | Image/article Link: Here)
Political observers have spent considerable energy discussing the many legislative seats that Republicans flipped in the Virginia and New Jersey elections this month. But few have remarked that women and minorities led the charge, continuing the recent trend toward a more diverse GOP.
Women or racial minorities won 10 of the 15 state legislative seats Republicans captured from Democrats in November. The winning candidates run the gamut of life experiences. New Jersey’s Marilyn Pipierno, a fitness coach who won a seat in New Jersey’s 11th Assembly district, is typical of the new crowd. She and fellow Republican Kimberly Eulner beat two Democratic incumbents in a suburban Monmouth County seat that President Biden had carried by nearly 12 points just the year before. In all, seven of those 10 victors flipped seats that Biden had carried by at least seven points.
A.C. Cordoza is perhaps the most interesting new Republican. Cordoza, who is Black, was a Democrat who backed President Barack Obama’s campaign only to find his “core values” aligned more with Republicans. READ MORE
By Henry Olsen | Washington Post
(Image credit: Al Drago/Bloomberg | Image/article Link: Here)
In this year’s election, Democrats lost big in and around big cities. They weren’t supposed to lose Virginia or South New Jersey, let alone see red waves in places like Long Island, but they did. The exact reasons, and key voters, will be chewed over by strategists for both parties heading into the 2022 and 2024 cycles. Was it white women? Latinos?
For much of this year, I’ve been surveying voters and residents in the country’s growing metropolitan regions and based on my findings, the results of the most recent election did not come as a surprise.
My research suggests analysts should look more broadly at what I call the “metro majority” — a crucial cohort of voters that is both more diverse and more centrist than most political analysts assume. Demographers correctly point out that America is increasingly urban and suburban; the voters who now drive our politics are the 86 percent that live in and around cities, from their centers to the beginning of their exurbs. READ MORE
By Michael Hendrix | Politico
(Image credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images | Image/article Link: Here)
When a caseworker in California Democrat Katie Porter’s House office answers the phone, the constituent on the other end of the line may speak one of a dozen languages.
Porter has had staff translate outreach and congressional materials into Mandarin, Farsi, Korean and Vietnamese, among others. She said her staff draws from the diverse community and speaks several languages, but that’s not always enough.
“My staff people, first and foremost, are people who are experts in government services; they are not trained for translation,” she said.
Over the past decade, Porter’s Irvine-area 45th District in Southern California grew to the largest by population in the state and was 45 percent non-Hispanic white in 2020, down from 55 percent in 2010. The district is more than one quarter Asian, which has shaped how Porter reaches out to her constituents. For example, she often contacts local community groups and ethnic churches in efforts to share more information about federal programs.
Results from the 2020 census show the country had less than 60 percent non-Hispanic white residents for the first time. The Census Bureau changed how it asks race and ethnicity questions, as well as its data processing behind the scenes, making it difficult to say how much the country diversified exactly since the 2010 count. READ MORE
By Michael Macagnone | Roll Call
(Image credit: Mark Rightmire/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images file photo | Image/article Link: Here)