Nevada’s Catherine Cortez Masto triumphed in her closely watched race this past weekend, defeating Big Lie pusher Adam Laxalt and keeping the U.S. Senate in Democratic control for another two years. Cortez Masto, the first and only Latina in the chamber, secured her reelection on Saturday following vote counts in Clark County, a blue stronghold.
The next day, Cortez Masto thanked the many supporters who pushed her across the finish line, speaking at the International Brotherhood of Carpenters Local 1977 in Las Vegas. Labor efforts, like those of UNITE Here and its affiliate Culinary 226, and Latino voters were absolutely critical in this victory.
“We knew this was going to be a tough campaign,” she said in remarks. “But like all of you, I’m a Nevadan. And I know what it takes to deliver for my state. Just know whether you voted for me or not, I will always fight for you, always.”
RELATED STORY: Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto's massive lead among Latino voters could help secure her reelection
“She thanked key voting blocs of police officers and first responders, as well as the workers that compose Nevada’s labor unions for helping deliver her the seat once held by longtime Democratic stalwart Harry Reid,” Las Vegas Sun reported. “When Reid returned, he hand-picked Cortez Masto to run.” It’s this same Reid Machine that has now helped secure her another term, with volunteers knocking on 1 million doors, and in the last few days carrying out the largest “curing” effort in the state, Culinary 226 said.
“In a tight race to the finish line, the Latino vote also proved critical in favor of the incumbent senator,” The Immigration Hub said.
“As you all know, I don’t forget where I come from,” Cortez Masto. “I have a grandfather who came from Chihuahua, Mexico, to this country for a better life. Grandmother from Las Cruces, New Mexico. They worked hard. They worked hard, and my parents worked hard, in this community, growing up here, to support our family. It is the story of so many Latino families, across our state. It’s the story of so many Latino families across the country.”
“I know my family—not only those here today, but those that have passed—would be so proud to see me serving as the first Latina in the U.S. Senate,” she continued. “But even prouder to see me reelected.” Cortez Masto in remarks pledged continue fighting for Nevadans, including those without immigration status. “These Nevadans deserve to feel safe here in their home, and I will work with anyone—anyone—to ensure they are treated with dignity.”
Staying true to her words that she didn’t forget where she came from, Cortez Masto that same day thanked Latino supporters at a local restaurant. “It was wonderful to come back to La Vecindad to celebrate with @SomosVotantes and our Latino community,” she tweeted. “It was wonderful to come back to La Vecindad to celebrate with @SomosVotantes and our Latino community!”
Indeed, the senator and her campaign had in the closing days of the election reiterated that Latinos, particularly Latina voters, would be her pathway to another term in the U.S. senate. Univision polling ahead of Election Day had shown her with a massive lead among Latinos, leading Laxalt by more than 30 points.
Cortez Masto’s win was also a repudiation of the GOP’s full-on embrace of nativism and anti-immigrant hostility, with Laxalt having teamed up with the National Republican Senatorial Committee for an ad that guest starred a pusher of white supremacist “great replacement” conspiracy theory. Laxalt during the general race also boasted of efforts to deport young undocumented immigrants, “touting his opposition to protections for immigrants who were brought to the country as children, commonly known as ‘Dreamers,’” Russell Contreras reported in April.
In one sign of how toxic this rhetoric was, UNLV Immigration Clinic’s Michael Kagan noted that Republican Joe Lombardo had also bragged about wanting to deport people. “But he dropped that talk in the general election.” Laxalt didn’t, he said.
”Meanwhile, Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto maintained a pro-immigrant stance throughout the cycle, touting a balanced approach that endorsed both border security and citizenship for longstanding undocumented immigrants,” immigrant rights advocacy group America’s Voice said, hosting a roundtable for young immigrants and telling them the Republican was “playing politics with your lives.” Her reelection and Laxalt’s defeat are further proof that noted white supremacist Stephen Miller’s $40 million hate campaign was an epic flop. “Laxalt is clearly a student of Stephen Miller—and it served him no good,” said Immigration Hub’s Beatriz Lopez.
“As the first and only Latina in the Senate, Catherine Cortez Masto is a trailblazer with many historical achievements,” said CHC BOLD PAC Chairman Ruben Gallego. “Tonight, she adds another to the list: defending the Democratic majority in the United States Senate.”
“More than 1200 ordinary people—housekeepers, cooks, dishwashers and other hospitality workers who powered UNITE HERE‘s canvass—achieved something extraordinary in this election season,” said UNITE HERE President D. Taylor and Secretary-Treasurer Gwen Mills. “And we’re not done. We are partnering with allies in Georgia to deliver the race for Senator Warnock, building off our general election efforts there to bring the full force of our canvassing program.”
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