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Latino Democrats say Spanish-language campaign needed on gun control

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Some Latino Democrats say their party needs a Spanish-language campaign to counter GOP messaging and misinformation around guns, mass shootings and other threats to democracy.

Driving the news: The killing last week of 19 children and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas, renewed calls for gun control measures.

Meanwhile, right-wing conspiracy theories about the shooting immediately spread from the online fringes to the mainstream.The intrigue: Rep. Norma Torres (D-CA) told Axios that Democrats should “absolutely” develop Spanish-language outreach countering anti-gun control messaging and other GOP policies she thinks go too far, like misinformation about elections and the January 6 insurrection.

Torres also said the campaign needs to highlight how Republicans in power often refuse to give voices to Mexican Americans and Central Americans who are victims of violence.”At that (Uvalde) press conference, I didn’t see myself, I didn’t see the faces of those parents. The majority of them were Latinos,” Torres said, referring to a press conference held by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott with predominantly white male speakers. Other authorities dealing with the shooting have provided public updates only in English, prompting criticism that the many Spanish speakers are being excluded.What they’re saying: Democratic strategist Kristian Ramos questioned whether Democrats are telling “a clear story to voters that highlights what we’ve done for Latinos contrasted with the extremism of the Republican Party.”

“If Republicans can go on WhatsApp and call us socialists for the last three years in Spanish, we can certainly go on WhatsApp, we can certainly go on Spanish language radio, and just tell the truth.”The other side: The Republican National Committee dismissed the idea of a campaign around gun control and Democrats’ accusations that GOP policies are extreme, pointing to an Axios-Ipsos Latino Poll that found inflation and crime were the top concerns for Latinos.

“Democrats should focus on addressing the problems they created. Latino voters know (President) Biden and Democrats are responsible for historic inflation, record-high gas prices, surging crime, and a raging border crisis,” RNC communications director Danielle Alvarez told Axios. “Republicans are on the ground engaging with Hispanic communities every day, and we know that Latino voters reject Biden and Democrats’ out-of-touch policies.”But, but, but: The Democratic National Committee last month launched Adelante, an outreach program targeting Latino voters ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.

The DNC also said it would start a seven-figure investment in paid media, kicking off with a round of Spanish-language print and radio ads. Before the NRA convention in Houston last week, the DNC held a press conference to denounce Republican resistance against control. Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX), a BOLD PAC board member, took part in the event and has spoken to Spanish-language media.Don’t forget: Democrats also have faced criticism for failing to engage Latino voters enough or for running superficial Spanish-language commercials late in elections.

In April, the campaign arm of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus rebuked the political action committee connected to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi over its plan to spend just a sliver of its 2022 midterm campaign budget on Spanish-language ads.This story has been updated to clarify that the RNC was responding to several of Democrats’ accusations, not just on gun control.

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Source : Axios

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