The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee lays out his Latino agenda.
Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, this week released his plan to address issues in the Latino community.
Biden’s Latino agenda, available in full on his campaign’s website, addresses a swath of topics from immigration reform to expanded health care access. The release comes after recent polls have shown Biden has wavering support in the Latino community and as President Donald Trump appears likely to garner a larger share of the Latino vote than in 2016.
A June NPR/PBS/NewsHour poll found Biden is underperforming in the Latino community. Trump, who received 28 percent of the Latino vote in 2016, had 39 percent support in the poll. A July New York Times/Siena College poll found Biden performing more favorably among Latinos, up 39 percent over Trump.
Trump has not presented a plan for Latinos.
Here’s what’s in Biden’s plan:
Expanded Health Care Access: Biden pledges to maintain and expand the Affordable Care Act,
commonly known as Obamacare, adding a public option that would offer coverage to five million people. Biden’s campaign says this will serve as an alternative to Medicaid in states that have not expanded the program. In Wisconsin, Republicans have refused to accept federal funding for BadgerCare, even though 70 percent of state residents support the expansion. Biden also wants to double funding for community health centers.
Economy: Biden plans to bolster the middle class and help Latinos move into higher-paying jobs by increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour and strengthening unions. As of the 2010 Census, the median Latino household income in Wisconsin was just 72 percent that of the state average, a University of Wisconsin Applied Population Laboratory report found.
K-12 Education: Biden wants to make pre-K available for every child, triple funding to schools with 40 percent or more low-income students, expand community schools, and provide funding to double school psychologists, nurses, counselors, and social workers.
Higher Education: Schools that serve Latinos and students of color would receive a $70 billion investment under Biden, the Pell Grant maximum would be doubled, two years of community college would be free, and student loan payment maximums would be halved. DACA recipients, or DREAMers, would be eligible for all of those benefits. In Wisconsin, just 33 percent of Latinos have education past high school, and 40 percent did not graduate high school.
Immigration Reform: Biden wants to streamline the citizenship process for the country’s 11 million undocumented immigrants as well as the asylum system by hiring more immigration judges and asylum officers. He also vowed to overturn all temporary protection status decisions made by the Trump administration “that do not appropriately consider the facts on the ground.”