Hispanic Caucus launches anti-disinformation YouTube channel ‘Ya Tu Sabes’

Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) is seen during a press conference on Thursday, May 19, 2022 to discuss the Puerto Rico Status Act.
Greg Nash
Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) is seen during a press conference on Thursday, May 19, 2022 to discuss the Puerto Rico Status Act.

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus campaign arm on Friday will debut a new YouTube channel with videos about top election issues for young Hispanics in Spanish and English.

The six-figure effort launched by Bold PAC, the Hispanic Caucus campaign group, will feature Los Angeles-born actress and comedian Gabriela Fresquez hosting the series’ English language videos.

The YouTube channel “Ya Tu Sabes” is part of a broader campaign dubbed “Our Lucha” intended to combat disinformation while energizing Latino voters to head to the polls.

In the introduction video, Fresquez makes comedic references to a host of clichés about the U.S. Hispanic community, like the excessive use of Vick’s VapoRub, lighting votive candles – “la velita” – and an unseen character, “Tío Jorge,” who is “still waiting for the Moderna vaccine to turn me into a lizard person.”

The tongue-in-cheek references are politically relevant as Republicans and Democrats compete to demonstrate deeper cultural competency to Hispanic constituencies ahead of the midterm elections.

“The effort to educate and engage the Latino community is ours – it’s our community and it’s our fight. Our Lucha is about our comunidad. It’s about our commitment to advocate for ourselves and to do it by amplifying diverse voices from within with early investments and tactics that will actually resonate with Latinos,” said Bold PAC Chair Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.).

In addition to the English-language videos hosted by Fresquez, the series will have original content in Spanish to extend its reach.

Still, the videos are targeted toward younger Hispanics, many of whom either consume their media in either English or a combination of the two languages.

The debut Spanish-language video essentially reviews Fresquez’s first topical video on the economy and inflation through a comedic exchange between two characters.

But the lighthearted video delivers a political punch, as the two characters’ take on rent and gas prices favorably compares New Mexico’s Democratic administration to Texas’s Republican government.

“Although rent prices are sky high, there are certain states like New Mexico that are doing something about it, unlike Texas that still doesn’t even know what to do,” a character says in Spanish.

“Look, New Mexico is giving me plenty of hope that they still worry about us,” adds the character.

The Spanish-language focus on those southwestern states is key to Bold PAC’s strategy for the midterms, where turnout among Hispanic communities along the border could help decide a handful of House races.

And targeting younger Latinos with political content wrapped in entertainment reflects community-specific media consumption patterns, particularly the widespread use of YouTube and messaging app WhatsApp as key platforms.

“Efforts to engage Latinos need to meet the reality of their daily lives in new and creative ways. Ya Tu Sabes is at the cutting edge of political outreach to our community and will deliver messages in a way that’s relatable and fun ahead of the midterms,” said Bold PAC Executive Director Victoria McGroary.

The project serves as a sort of signal marker that Bold PAC and its allies are setting for other groups in the Democratic Party, following significant tension as many Hispanic Democrats have accused other party structures of making late, insufficient or culturally incompetent investments in the community.

“These aren’t your ordinary political spots. They’re all about meeting Latinos where they are. Latinos are online, on their phones, and on Youtube and Whatsapp. That’s where Democrats need to be too,” said McGroary.

But the ambitious campaigns also show that Bold PAC is changing its fundamental strategy, after two decades of focusing on supporting its incumbents and Hispanic challengers in Democratic primaries.

“While Our Lucha started in earnest this cycle, it builds on over 20 years of us leading the charge to mobilize Latinos. This work has always been led by Hispanics, from Members of Congress and candidates to political operatives. Fighting for more diverse representation is what BOLD PAC does, and it’s something we will keep doing for decades to come,” said Gallego.

Tags 2022 midterms BOLD PAC Gabriela Fresquez Hispanic Caucus Our Lucha Ruben Gallego Ruben Gallego Victoria McGroary
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