Appearing on “America’s Newsroom,” McDaniel told host Sandra Smith that the GOP is talking to Hispanic voters about the record of the administration and that they believe the Hispanic community sees the progress made by the president.
“We get to talk to the Hispanic voters about the record of this administration. Hispanic unemployment is at a record low. They see that wages are up, that jobs are coming back, that they’re able to start businesses because loans are more available,” she said.
She also took a jab at Democratic socialists like Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.: “The other factor is, you’ve got a lot of people from Venezuela and Cuba in Florida. And, they recognize that that Democratic Party is proposing socialism and they know firsthand how dangerous that is. And, that’s why they fled those countries to come to America.”
Meanwhile, Democratic candidates have come out swinging against the administration’s position with the Hispanic community.
In Columbia, South Carolina on Sunday, Representative Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., said: “Latino families in America are under assault by this president right now.”
Speaking elsewhere in the state, Sanders said the president is divisive: “He’s trying to divide us up, our campaign brings us together…black, and white and Latino, Native American, Asian American—it brings us together.”
Florida is, unsurprisingly, a key swing state for campaigns in the 2020 election. The first of a dozen Democratic presidential debates kicks off Wednesday in Miami. Florida is home to more two million Hispanic voters. The central part of the state has seen an increase in Puerto Ricans -- who tend to support Democrats -- who've relocated from their traditional base in places like New York and from the island territory in the wake of a devastating blow by Hurricane Maria in 2017.
The president won Florida in 2016 with 25 percent of the Hispanic vote.
"We are acutely aware that the Republicans will not simply roll over and concede the Latino vote,” Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez told NBC News.
However, the president’s efforts could be met with barriers. He’s drawn harsh criticism for many of his previous comments and policies that largely impact Hispanics.
More than 144,000 migrants were apprehended at the border in May. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) says the money to address humanitarian concerns at the border and in detention facilities runs out at the end of the month.
House lawmakers traded accusations Tuesday over a troubled $4.5 billion funding bill to combat the escalating humanitarian crisis. Republicans are accusing Democrats of “playing games” with the crisis, and Democrats urging their GOP counterparts to “show some decency.”
“I think a lot of Hispanic voters recognize that they’ve come here illegally, that they’re working hard, and they recognize the importance of a good legal immigration system,” McDaniel said.
“We have to stop this influx of people coming in at our borders. Not just because it’s not great for our country, but it’s not good for these families making these dangerous journeys.”
“So, why don’t we fix our immigration system, make it easier to come in, create a merit-based system…They want certainty in our immigration system, and they’re seeing Democrats continue to hold that up.”