Progressive Latinx group Mijente on Tuesday announced its first ever presidential endorsement, for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, just days before Nevadans caucus in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary on Saturday.
"Something that's very appealing to people is his consistency and the concept of palabra," Mijente's director and cofounder Marisa Franco told Politico. "And what that means in our community is giving people your 'word.'"
Sanders took to Twitter to thank the group for backing the campaign, calling the endorsement an "honor."
"Together we will build a multiracial, multigenerational movement to sweep him out of office and transform this country so it works for all," said Sanders.
It’s an honor to receive @ConMijente’s first presidential endorsement. They’ve mobilized a powerful grassroots network to stand up to Trump. Together we will build a multiracial, multigenerational movement to sweep him out of office and transform this country so it works for all. https://t.co/8cuUgaLh57— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) February 18, 2020
The decision was based on the need for radical action to address the problems of the Trump era, said Mijente in its official statement announcing the endorsement.
As the group explained:
We need urgent change on a whole host of issues—climate change, deportations, education, health care. To get that change, first things first, we gotta get Donald Trump out and make him a one term president. We need a candidate who can assemble a vibrant, diverse coalition that presents a clear alternative. Today it's official—we believe that candidate is Senator Bernie Sanders.
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Mijente, founded in December 2015, focuses on get-out-the-vote efforts among Latinx and Chicanx Americans. The group declined to back a candidate in 2016 but decided to support Sanders in the 2020 primary because of his consistent efforts to promote the interests of the working class.
"Sen. Bernie Sanders has a long history of progressive stances and consistently remains on the side of working people," the group tweeted Tuesday morning.
Trump’s re-election is a direct threat to our communities. Sen. @BernieSanders has a long history of progressive stances + consistently remains on side of working people. That's why we're proud to endorse Sanders for president.https://t.co/beYMtIksNj #VamosConBernie #FueraTrump— Mijente (@ConMijente) February 18, 2020
The group asked members to endorse one, more, or no candidates in January after months of discussion and analysis. Over 70% of members backed a Sanders endorsement.
"We need a president who will fight like hell for change that is long overdue and who will not quickly return to pre-Trump, quasi-progressive policies," Mijente said on Twitter. "With over 70% of the vote, a majority of Mijente members agree that Sanders is the best path to mobilize Latinxs and beat Trump."
Saturday's Nevada caucuses are expected to turn out high numbers of Hispanic voters in the state. Sanders leads the demographic with 64% in Nevada, according to Data for Progress polling released Monday.
Franco told Politico that the group's endorsement did not mean Mijente would not push to hold Sanders accountable for campaign promises.
"We're not picking a savior, we're picking our target," said Franco. "We didn't pick him to be the fixer of all things."