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LULAC Iowa leads the efforts to get Latinos out to Caucus

The Iowa League of United Latin American Citizens’ Latino Vote Iowa grassroots caucus campaign is the first-ever statewide caucus outreach and education campaign to ensure the Latino community participate in the 2016 Iowa Caucuses on Feb. 1 in record numbers. 

 

Iowa LULAC wants at least 10,000 to 20,000 of Iowa’s registered Latino voters to caucus. About 200,000 Iowans are expected to participate in both the Democratic and Republican caucuses.

“We want to significantly increase our participation in the Iowa Caucuses,” said Joe Enriquez Henry, president of Council 307 and National LULAC Vice President of the Midwest. “We are confident Latinos can be at least 10 percent of the participants on caucus night.”

Latino Vote Iowa has reached out to more than 43,000 registered Latino voters through mailings, phone calls to registered voters and door-to-door canvassing in neighborhoods throughout the state. The campaign focused on the Iowa communities with the highest percentage of Latino voters. Field staff has met with thousands of voters in their neighborhoods. The campaign has included paid phone calling, mailings and door-to-door canvassing. Volunteers and field staff talked to Latinos about the caucuses and issues that were important to them in the presidential race. 

“In those counties we have a larger voice, and we will make an impact,” Enriquez Henry said.

Several thousand Latinos have already indicated they will participate in the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

“While we are pleased with the initial response, there is still more work to do,” Enriquez Henry said. “Our people must attend on caucus night to have our voices heard. We cannot defeat candidates who will set our country back and hurt our people without the help of each and every Latino who is eligible to vote.”

The Latino Vote Iowa grassroots campaign kicked off with a large event that drew more than 300 Latinos from across Iowa to celebrate the achievements of the Latino community and to energize them to become involved in the political process. Special guests included Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, Cook County commissioner; and Lorella Praeli, the national director of Latino outreach for the Hillary Clinton campaign.

The campaign has included caucus trainings and other events where presidential candidates and their campaigns have met with the Latino community to listen to issues that are important to Latinos and explain how they will address those concerns. The trainings were focused on teaching participants about the caucuses, the differences between the Republican and Democratic caucuses, and explaining how to participate. The caucus campaign website, www.LatinoVoteIowa.com, contains this information, as well as links for how caucus-goers can find their caucus precinct site.

Latino Vote Iowa campaign staff also will meet with several hundred Des Moines Public Schools high school students to energize them about becoming involved in the political process at a young age and get them registered to vote. 

The Latino Vote Iowa caucus campaign has had a strong media presence with requests from local, state and national news organizations to cover its caucus campaign work in print, broadcast and online media. The work has been publicized in national news organizations that included ABC, MSNBC, NBC Latino, the New York Times, Univision, Fusion and Telemundo.

For more information about the Latino Vote Iowa campaign or to request a caucus training, contact Enriquez Henry at 515-208-7312 or jhenry@lulac.org, or Melissa Walker at 515-681-7731 or mwmediaconsultants@yahoo.com.

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