Biden’s campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez wants to stop Trump

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — President Biden’s campaign manager was picking at the last of her egg-white omelet and thinking about what it would mean for the November election to go wrong. In a word, what does she think would happen if Trump won?

“In one word. Wow. It’s hard,” said Julie Chavez Rodriguez. She mulled it for a while. “For me, it’s like, either damage or devastation. Those are the two that I kind of go back and forth on. I think it would be devastating for our communities. And I think it would be damaging for our politics and for the policies that we have enacted.”

Chávez Rodríguez was sitting for breakfast at the resort where Biden and his entourage were staying, a tony stucco palace where the cheapest of its 750 rooms went for $800 a night. The Biden campaign was here, in the fiercely contested state that the president won by only 10,457 votes four years ago, as part of a Western swing through Nevada, Arizona and Texas. The previous night, President Biden had stood in front of a crowd of about 50 supporters at a modest Mexican restaurant in a barrio near the Phoenix airport, for the launch of a campaign arm called “Latinos con Biden-Harris.”

“I need you,” Biden told his supporters at the event. “I need you badly. I need the help. Kamala and I desperately need your help.”

He touted three of the Latinos in his Cabinet and the policies that, in his view, his administration was enacting for the community: abating prescription-drug costs, easing student debt, lowering unemployment rates.

He had also recognized his campaign manager. The Organizer.

“It’s a little bit in her blood. Cesar Chavez is her grandfather,” he said, raising his eyebrows as he alluded to the venerated labor and civil rights leader — who was also here, sort of, staring at the president from a large, framed print of a mail stamp bearing his portrait on the opposite wall.

Chavez Rodriguez is here in part because Black and Brown voters are essential ingredients in the victory recipe, and they’ve been souring on Biden. In 2020, Black voters chose Biden by 81 percentage points, according to an average of exit polls and other voter surveys; in a Post average of recent polls, Biden was up by 49 points among Black registered voters. Biden won Latino voters by 29 points, but recent polls find Trump running about even with Biden among this group, though there are fewer high-quality polls of Latino voters.

Chavez Rodriguez hopes to remind Latino voters that Trump, in the last year of his term, presided over a pandemic economy that saw high Latino unemployment and small businesses struggling. But Trump’s persistent image among some Latinos as “a successful businessman” makes him a unique challenge as an opponent. “I think that there’s some sense and affinity to someone who is, kind of, in their minds, they see a self-made man,” Chavez Rodriguez said at the resort.

“Which we know is not the case,” she added, alluding to Trump’s not-so-humble origins as the son of a New York real estate tycoon.

She is the heir to a much different American legacy. She grew up partly at Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz, a 187-acre warren of buildings and homes Cesar Chavez chose to serve as the headquarters for United Farm Workers. Chavez lived next door to her family’s small house. Her father, Arturo Rodríguez, who almost missed her birth because Chavez had dispatched his son-in-law 150 miles away from home to organize citrus and strawberry farmers, went on to become head of UFW. From an early age, Chavez Rodriguez’s life was surrounded by protests, boycotts, marches, meetings. She’d later recall being in the back of meetings, going on rides to Los Angeles, getting arrested at age 9 for leafleting in New Jersey.

These days, Chavez Rodriguez, now 45, speaks more like a Washington operative than an activist — an effect, perhaps, of an adult life spent working for professional Democrats (a Colorado senator, the Obama…

This article was originally published by a . Read the Original article here. .

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