According to the most recent polling and census data, roughly one-quarter of New York City's electorate is Latino.
And as the race for New York City’s next mayor begins to heat up, the Democratic mayoral candidates already are coveting the endorsements of key Latino officials in the fierce battle for the Latino vote, reported the Wall Street Journal.
All of the campaigners have begun to focus squarely on education and the economy, policy issues that resonate with Latino voters. And last week at City Hall, mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio read Spanish from a cue card to his Latino audience, a sign he is in serious courtship mode.
On Tuesday, de Blasio had lunch with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., the city's highest-ranking Latino official, who already has spoken twice with John Liu, another candidate for mayor.
Other highly coveted endorsements include those of Rep. Nydia Velázquez, the first Puerto Rican woman to be elected to Congress, and state Sen. Adriano Espaillat, reported the paper.
Diaz and other Latino leaders point to President Barack Obama’s 44 percentage-point-edge with Latinos over Romney as proof of the power of the Latino vote,
Diaz called it a “giant awakening,” but warned, “No one has a lock on it.”
Adolfo Carrión Jr., a former Bronx borough president, officially announced his bid for mayor on Tuesday at the Bronx Museum. As he finished his remarks, he led the crowd in a chant in Spanish, "Es Nuestra Ciudad!" (It's our city!)