As a first generation Mexican-American, it is tempting to be optimistic seeing a charismatic brown man running for Congress for the only home I’ve ever known. Unfortunately, a cursory look at Abel Maldonado’s career shows that his representation of Latinos lacks substance.
I’ve spoken with friends and family in the Latino community about this, and the response is clear — they know Maldonado shouldn’t be trusted with national office. While there is certainly an argument to be made generally, I’d like to address the perspective of Latinos in particular.
The issues that Latinos consistently prioritize are education, immigration and the economy. In these important avenues for upward mobility, Maldonado has failed to achieve progress. He voted for the infamous Proposition 187, which sought to cut off state services to undocumented immigrants. He voted for cuts at unacceptable levels to teachers, K-12 education and collegiate budgets. He consistently opposed extending disability benefits, family medical leave, raising the minimum wage, and keeping jobs in America.
As someone who keeps both my Latino and Central Coast community in mind, I can only conclude that Maldonado is not the answer. Lois Capps, who — while not sharing my features — is the representative we can all count on.