Young Latino voters in Texas name health care for all as their top priority, a groundbreaking survey of more than 1,000 young Texans finds. Permanent protections for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients—Texas is home to the second-largest population of beneficiaries in the nation—rank a close second.
“The Latinos we interviewed,” says the report from Jolt Initiative, Ethnifacts, and US-ness, “demonstrated a deep understanding of the issues they cared about and were most motivated by liberal issues, including universal healthcare, protection for DREAMers, racial and ethnic equality and justice, economic prosperity, and raising the minimum wage.”
And these issues are personal. In a state where one in three Latinos do not have health insurance, state Attorney General Ken Paxton (indicted on state securities-fraud charges) is leading the latest Republican effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. “We’re being taxed but we don’t have healthcare,” survey recipient Jose said. “I’m a server in a restaurant … how do you expect me to pay $400 per month? Meet us halfway.”
Others expressed support for putting young immigrants facing deportation onto a path to citizenship. “I have friends who depended on DACA and one friend was going to college and had dreams of doing what they wanted, and now they can’t,” 28-year-old David said. “They are now working at some manual labor job so they can save money and prepare to get deported. It’s saddening that something like this can happen.”