Ocasio-Cortez: Lack of Latino representation ‘really disgraceful’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) addresses reporters during a press conference on Wednesday, December 8, 2021 about a resolution condemning Rep. Lauren Boebert's (R-Colo.) use of Islamaphobic rhetoric and removing her from her current committees.
Greg Nash

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) criticized the lack of Latino representation in leadership in an interview published Tuesday.

“I think it’s really disgraceful, frankly, the lack of Latino representation,” Ocasio-Cortez said to New York Magazine’s Intelligencer. “And the thing is that this isn’t just about identity representation, it’s also about issue representation. 

“Frankly, even with the mayor, some of his Latino appointments have been homophobic and have been unrepresentative of the interests of our broader community. Even on the state level, there is an enormous dearth of real representation of people fighting for Latinos,” she added.

“I have endorsed and invested in, I believe, 19 city council candidates that won their races this past cycle. So a lot of the work that I’m investing in is building our bench and also organizing our voters and our communities around the issues that are important to us,” she also said.

The progressive lawmaker’s comments come after a recent poll indicated more Hispanic Democrats are considering leaving their political party than Hispanic Republicans.

In July, Latina lawmakers gathered to discuss efforts about increasing representation in both the federal government and the private sector.

“When I was first entered into politics, it was dominated by white males in my party,” Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), who was the first Hispanic Republican in New York City to hold elected office, said at the time. “Because I was sort of an outsider, you could say I always had to work harder and take on the harder seats.”

In the 117th Congress, there are a record-breaking 54 Latino lawmakers, including 14 women. 

Tags Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

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