Latinos Barely Represented On Elected Bodies
Across the Northwest, Latinos make up nearly 12 percent of the population. Yet our research estimates only two percent of the region’s elected officials are Hispanic. It’s a disparity that voters like Jose Ramirez in Yakima County want to change.
“If someone can vote and doesn’t, well, that doesn’t do any good," he says. "You’re allowing others to vote in your place, to make different laws than you might like.”
This week, we're looking at why the region's largest minority group has so little clout in the political arena. Our research finds that the number of Latino elected officials in the Northwest is especially low compared to the growing Hispanic population in all three states. We begin by looking at some of the reasons for that gap.