John Leguizamo: Trump was more 'aggressive' about courting Latino vote
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Actor and political activist John Leguizamo said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter published Thursday that President TrumpDonald TrumpSenators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House Georgia secretary of state withholds support for 'reactionary' GOP voting bills MORE’s reelection campaign was more “aggressive” about engaging Latino voters this election cycle, adding that the community is “always an afterthought” in presidential elections. 

In response to a question on if the Colombian-American actor thought “Trump did a better job than Biden in courting Latino votes,” Leguizamo said, “Yes, because he was aggressive about it.” 

“He kept saying, even in his debate, he mentioned the word Latinos,” the 56-year-old said, adding that Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenKlain on Manchin's objection to Neera Tanden: He 'doesn't answer to us at the White House' Senators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Overnight Defense: New Senate Armed Services chairman talks Pentagon policy nominee, Afghanistan, more | Biden reads report on Khashoggi killing | Austin stresses vaccine safety in new video MORE "didn't ever want to mention it."

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“I know Biden had a lot of Latin people in his campaign, but he needed to talk about our issues and about us and mention us. And court us. You've got to court us,” Leguizamo continued. “Trump did court us and did go down there and microtarget Latino people in really clever and devious ways.”

Trump performed better than expected among Latino voters, especially in Florida, winning the state and supporting two of his allies who flipped Democratic House seats in Miami-Dade County.

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The Trump campaign reached out to Latino voters early on in the Miami area with Spanish-language television, radio and social media ads, many of which labeled Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden as a socialist candidate, playing into anti-socialist fears among the large Cuban-American population there. 

Leguizamo, who in January endorsed White House Democratic hopeful Andrew YangAndrew YangNYC's largest union endorses Maya Wiley in mayoral race Five things to watch in the New York City mayoral race Yang hits donation requirements to get city funds in NYC mayor's race MORE, added in his interview Thursday that while Trump’s campaign was able to effectively target Latino voters this election cycle, issues concerning the ethnic group are not always brought to the forefront in policy discussions. 

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“With Latino people, we're always an afterthought, and that gets in my craw a little bit,” Leguizamo said. “We're the largest ethnic group in America, the second-oldest ethnic group in America after Native Americans — so it's not like we just got here. It's not like we're not present and we're not doing things.”

“If you don't keep us in mind and put us in the forefront, you're not going to get us,” the actor added. “Nobody comes after us. Nobody knocks on our doors. Nobody's talking about our issues. Nobody has a Latinx vice presidential candidate or is dangling the carrot of Latins as cabinet members.” 

Voting numbers show Biden benefited from grassroots movements among Arizona Latinos and appears set to win the traditionally red state.

Leguizamo has continuously been an outspoken critic of Trump, saying in a 2018 interview, "We're in dark times. We're in troubled times. And our lives are at stake.” 

"I just feel like Trump came out and instantly attacked Latin people,” he added then. “I felt attacked, I felt diminished, and I felt like I got to step up and speak out."