Things That Matter

The Presidential Election Is Still Too Close To Call But Here Is How Latinos Voted

The 2020 presidential election is days from being projected. Millions of mail-in ballots are left to be counted in the key states of Nevada, Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. However, states with large Latino populations have been called and Latino voters were all over the map. Here’s a quick breakdown of the Latino vote in Florida, Texas, and Arizona.

First, it is important to note that the Latino vote is not a monolith.

There is no unified message to give to the larger Latino community. Latinos if different states and from different background have different issues they care about. Cuban-American voters in Florida are much more conservative than other Latino voters in the rest of the country. There is also a generational divide and gender divide that further separates Latino voters on party line. That was clear last night.

Cuban voters in Florida turned out for President Trump.

In Florida, 55 percent of Cuban voters went for President Trump, according to NBC News. Thirty percent of Puerto Ricans and 48 percent of “other Latinos” also voted for President Trump in the battleground state. President Trump improved on his numbers in Miami-Dade County with almost 200,000 more votes than in 2016. Meanwhile, Joe Biden lost support in Miami-Dade County shedding almost 11,000 votes from Hillary Clinton’s total for the county four years ago.

There are multiple factors at play here. First, President Trump aggressively chased the Latin American voters in South Florida. Venezuelans were proud to see President Trump pictured with Lilian Tintori. Tintori is the wife of the Venezuelan opposition folk hero Leopoldo López. Second, President Trump stoked fears within the Cuban-American community that a Biden administration would usher in a Socialist government similar to Cuba.

President Trump’s efforts were amplified and assisted with a disinformation campaign that turned Cuban voters further from Democrats. There was an infamous moment when an insert in the Miami Herald featured anti-Semitic and racist language during the Black Lives Matter protests. These moments offered the Trump campaign a perfect storm to court Cuban and Venezuelan voters in South Florida. The president’s relentless rally schedule in South Florida further drove Latinos of all backgrounds closer to Trump with different margins. However, the Cuban-American community is the only group where the majority support President Trump.

In Texas, fewer Latinos voted for Biden than did for Clinton in 2016.

Latinos voted for Biden with a 19 point spread, 59-40. However, that number is way down from the 27-point lead that Hillary Clinton had with Latino voters in Texas in 2016. President Trump managed to improve on his number of Latino voters in Texas substantially.

The trend of lost Democratic support was visible in different counties as well. Beto O’Rourke ran a wildly popular campaign against Ted Cruz in the 2018 midterms. However, Biden was unable to capitalize on O’Rourke’s gains and lost counties O’Rourke carried in 2018.

The stunning exception to last night’s trends was Arizona.

Latinos showed up at the polls in Arizona and came together to flip the state for the Democrats. President Trump won the state in 2016 by less than 4 points. Maricopa County, which elected Joe Arpaio as sheriff, flipped from Republican to Democrat to help deliver Biden a win in The Copper State.

Clinton won 61 percent of the Latino vote in Arizona in 2016. Biden, according to early numbers, ran up the count with Latino Arizonans and secured 70 percent of that vote. Arizona is a Latino and immigrant state and the stunning victory shows the discontent within the state where the Latino community has been attacked and Covid-19 has been devastating.

Arizona was home to Sheriff Arpaio who implemented racial profiling against Latino Arizonans. The policies and practices by Sheriff Arpaio and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office terrorized Latinos and they remembered. President Trump made a show of pardoning former Sheriff Arpaio after being found guilty of criminal contempt. Former Sheriff Arpaio violated a court order to cease and desist his crackdown on undocumented immigrants because of racial profiling.

READ: Politicians Need To Stop Assuming That The Latino Vote Is A Monolith Because It Is Not The Truth

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Racists Threatened To Call ICE On This Mexican Restaurant After They Kept Their Mask Rule

Things That Matter

Racists Threatened To Call ICE On This Mexican Restaurant After They Kept Their Mask Rule

Felix Aguilar / Getty Images

Several states across the country (mostly governed by Republican leaders) have decided to repeal their mask mandates despite their own health officials urging against such moves.

Yes, the vaccine roll out has improved under the Biden administration – with nearly 2 million people getting vaccinated each day – but that is still not enough for the United States to reach herd immunity over night.

Now, thanks to these irresponsible moves by Republican governors, Americans are left to fend for themselves against anti-makers. In fact, a Mexican restaurant in Texas that decided to keep its mask mandate for diners is now facing racist attacks with people threatening to call ICE on its workers.

Texas Mexican restaurant is facing a backlash for sticking to its mask rules.

Houston’s Picos Restaurant, a small family-owned Mexican restaurant, is facing racist threatening comments after deciding to prioritize public health amid an ongoing pandemic. Several people sent hateful messages through social media and called the restaurant, threatening to report staffers to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

“It was just horrific,” co-owner Monica Richards told the Washington Post. “People don’t understand unless you’re in our business what it felt like, how hard it was to go through everything we went through during covid. For people to be negative toward us for trying to remain safe, so that this doesn’t continue to happen, just makes zero sense to us.”

Picos decided to maintain their mask mandate as the governor lifted the state-wide one.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) rescind the statewide mask mandate despite the fact that a vast majority of his state’s residents remain vulnerable to COVID-19. The governor has ignored the advice of his own public health officials who say the state should wait on lifting these mandates until their is a greater incidence of vaccination in communities.

With Abbotts order, Texas will become the largest state in the nation to no longer require masks, which has not come easily for many businesses that are navigating enforcement mask rules to protect employees and customers while facing backlash.

Experts agree that masks are among the most effective way to curb the spread of COVID-19, but they’ve also become a partisan symbol. Masks have become so symbolic that one conservative group is set to hold a mask burning party the day the order is lifted, according to the Washington Post.

Picos hasn’t been the only restaurant facing such a backlash.

In fact, another Mexican restaurant in Houston, Cantina Bar, has been the victim of similar threatening messages, while several staff have been intimidated by screaming customers who refuse to wear masks even while it was required by a state order. Another Houston Mexican restaurant, Cantina Barba, received similar intimidating messages, and staff have been bullied by some screaming customers who refused to wear masks while it was required statewide, co-owner Steven O’Sullivan said.

“This has been ongoing through covid,” co-owner Steven O’Sullivan told the Post. “We’ve had threats of calling ICE. I had one guy just stand there and berate one of my bartenders and tell her ‘you’re an absolute idiot, you don’t know what you’re doing. If you think these masks are going to save your life, you’re stupid’ blah, blah, blah. Nobody wants to deal with that stuff.”

Another employee at a separate restaurant had to get stitches after he was hit in the head with a glass by a maskless customer he approached, Houston Police said. Hopefully, the governor will still encourage his constituents to do what’s right and continue to wear masks when asked to do.

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Daisy Ridley Claps Back at Ted Cruz After He Subtly Insulted Her ‘Star Wars’ Character

Entertainment

Daisy Ridley Claps Back at Ted Cruz After He Subtly Insulted Her ‘Star Wars’ Character

Photos via Getty Images

It seems like Ted Cruz can’t stay away from the spotlight. On the heels of a very public* scandal, Cruz is now drumming up some more controversy for himself. But now he’s inserting himself into some pre-existing drama.

This time, Rafael Cruz decided to share his opinion on a recent dispute in the Star Wars universe. Yes, you read that right.

Ted Cruz–who has had his fair share of celebrity feuds— decided to pick a fight with Star Wars actress, Daisy Ridley.

The drama started when Cruz tweeted about the ongoing conflict between Disney and “The Mandalorian” actress, Gina Carano.

As background, Disney fired Carano from the hit show after she shared various controversial, far-right opinions on social media. Her posts included anti-mask rhetoric, Q-Anon conspiracies, and promoting false election fraud rumors. Oh, and she also compared being a conservative in Hollywood to being a Jew in Nazi Germany.

Since Carano’s firing, many conservative figures have publicly come to her defense. One of them being Ted Cruz.

Recently, Rafael tweeted out: “Texan Gina Carano broke barriers in the Star Wars universe: not a princess, not a victim, not some emotionally tortured Jedi. She played a woman who kicked ass & who girls looked up to. She was instrumental in making Star Wars fun again. Of course Disney canceled her.”

For those who aren’t well versed in the Star Wars universe, Cruz’s tweet seemed to be throwing subtle shade at the character of Rey–a female Jedi in the most recent Star Wars trilogy. Sure, you could call Rey “emotionally tortured”…or you could call her a normal person who expresses normal feelings. *Shrug*

Anyway, Daisy Ridley–the actress who played Rey–soon caught wind of the diss when an interviewer brought it to her attention.

The interviewer than asked if Ridley had any response to her character being classified as an “emotionally tortured Jedi”.At first, Ridley seemed visibly surprised that Cruz shaded her character. But she quickly regained her composure–as well as her wit.

“I am very happy to be an emotionally tortured Jedi who doesn’t leave their state when it’s having a terrible time,” she quipped.

Looks like Cruz had to learn the hard way not to mess with the Force.

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