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Demographer Predicts Latino Voting Power Will Influence Key Northeast Elections

Latino Voters Supporting Trump (Credits: Vox)

Ness Sandoval, a native Latino and sociology professor at St. Louis University, reflects on his journey from western Nebraska to academia and the lack of interest Nebraska has shown in utilizing his expertise. At 55, with a growing family, he’s hesitant to uproot despite potential job opportunities elsewhere.

Sandoval emphasizes the importance of younger Latinos staying connected to their communities in Nebraska, as this impacts the state’s Latino voting power and ability to influence elections. He stresses the need for increased engagement in civic activities, including voting.

Latino Voters (Credits: Dissent Magazine)

To address these issues, Sandoval participates in a virtual summit hosted by Las Voces Nebraska. The summit focuses on boosting Latino civic engagement and voting and includes speakers like Rosie Castro, a civil rights activist, and political figures like State Sen. Ray Aguilar and former Lincoln City Council member Michelle Suarez.

The discussion touches on the vast growth of eligible Latino voters in Nebraska, highlighting the demographic shift and its potential impact on future elections. However, Sandoval notes that substantial change in voting power won’t occur until more young immigrants come of age to vote, likely around 2050.

Rosie Castro, Event Speaker (Credits: San Antonio Report)

The summit also addresses challenges within the Latino community, such as differing political views and the struggle to organize immigrant leaders for voter education. Rebecca Gonzales of Las Voces emphasizes the expense and complexity of these efforts, citing past work in building immigrant infrastructure across the state.

Despite progress in immigrant rights and community initiatives, there’s concern about political backlash impacting established and newer immigrants. Rosie Castro highlights the current challenges reminiscent of past struggles for civil rights, urging increased activism and engagement, particularly through voting, as a means to effect change.

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