On January 3rd, the 116th United States Congress was sworn in. The youngest congresswoman to ever be elected is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a 29-year-old Latina representing New York’s 14th congressional district. She has grabbed national attention for being outspoken about her chosen issues. It is clear that she is eager to represent her constituents. Her ideas are bold and are molded by her experiences as a Latina.
The Pew Research Center claims that young Latinos are one of the fastest growing populations in the nation. Our local and federal governments should reflect this growth. With more Latino community leaders serving in all levels of political office, we can create a more inclusive and attentive government.
Latinos are in the midst of some of our country’s most topical issues. We, or our families, are regularly experiencing the impact stemming from issues such as immigration, education, and healthcare. These lived experiences will allow for unique perspectives when creating and passing legislation.
While there is no statewide election in Alaska in 2019, there are opportunities for local seats. On the April 2nd Regular Municipal Election, Anchorage voters will elect 5 Assembly and 2 School Board members.
It is never too early to start planting the seeds for 2020 elections, where Alaska will see U.S Senate, State Senate, and State House seats on the ballot. The 2018 Midterms showed us that political office in the United States is no longer only attainable by the wealthy and powerful. We need to find, campaign for, and elect Latino leaders to our government.