A CABINET WITH SOME COLOR?

José López Zamorano | La Red Hispana 
Photo Credit: La Red Hispana

More than two weeks after the November 3 elections, President-elect Joe Biden remains unrecognized as such by President Trump, or by the majority of Republicans, despite the serious impact that the lack of recognition of reality could be on public health, amid a runaway COVID-19 pandemic, and on national security.

But the Republican rebellion has not prevented Biden from doing what every responsible adult must do under the circumstances: arming his transition team to face the great challenges that his administration will inherit as of January 20 at noon, and fulfill the long list of electoral promises; starting with eliminating some of Trump’s most draconian executive actions against vulnerable minorities.

His first circle of collaborators list includes a group of seasoned policy makers, starting with former Ebola pandemic czar Ron Klain, who will serve as his chief of staff. Julie Chávez Rodríguez, granddaughter of our legendary civil rights champion Cesar Chávez and a veteran of the Obama administration, will be the head of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

Other Hispanics will belong to the close circle of White House collaborators, such as Julissa Reynoso Pantaleón, a former US ambassador to Uruguay, who will be the chief of staff to Jill Biden and Anthony Bernal, who will be a senior adviser to the first lady.

However, a coalition of the main advocacy organizations for Hispanic causes in the United States believes that it is necessary for the new Biden administration to achieve the goal of parity for Latinas and Latinos throughout the federal administration, that is, a proportion of 20% of Hispanics in the 4,000 federal designations.

The so-called “20% Project” is promoted by UnidosUS, Hispanic Federation, Mi Familia Vota, and NALEO and they plan to carry out a national campaign to involve political analysts, the media, elected officials, non-profit organizations and non-governmental leaders to request a maximum presence of Hispanic Americans as political appointees in the Biden government.

“Representation matters and is an essential step toward improving government to better serve and protect everyone in our country. The diversity of our nation is its greatest strength,” said UNIDOSUS president, Janet Murguía.

I must admit that I am interested, rather than reaching a “quota”, that the next President Biden fulfill his campaign promises to the Latino community, starting with approving an ambitious comprehensive immigration reform, with a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the country.

Because meeting a quota of appointments cannot be a substitute for the new government allocating enough political capital to meet a group of voters that was key to its electoral triumph.

It is an outstanding debt at a time when millions of immigrants are risking their lives as essential workers for our collective survival.

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