Antonio Villaraigosa: Latino Politician in the US

Subject: Politics & Government
Pages: 3
Words: 601
Reading time:
3 min
Study level: College

The history of Latinos in the political scene of the United States has remained uncovered for a long time. There has been a continued struggle by the Latinos to gain access and recognition in the political scene of the United States. The Latin politicians have worked out their way. Beginning with influencing and changing politics in the local scenes, they have managed to influence the national politics of the United States. (Geron 1). One such politician is Antonio Villaraigosa.

Villaraigosa has managed to sail through the Anglo-dominated politics to become the mayor of Los Angeles. Villaraigosa is the current major of the city of Los Angeles, the United States. He was born in the year 1953 in the City Terrace which neighbors Los Angeles. He attended both public and Catholic schools. At the age of 5, his father abandoned the family. Later at 16, he suffered from a benign tumor which hindered him from engaging in physical activities. He attended the University of California in Los Angeles where he attained a Bachelor of Arts degree in History in the year 1977.

His political leadership can be traced back from the time he was in the University of California. He later enrolled to study law at Peoples College of Law which was an unaccredited institution that enhances labor unionism in Los Angeles. His dream of becoming a lawyer had several setbacks. He repeatedly failed the California Bar Exam, to be more precise, it happened four times. He then joined unionism where he served in different capacities (Cummings and Reddy 185). Villaraigosa joined politics in the year 1990 where he served at the Los Angeles Transport Board for four years. He was then elected to the State Assembly of California in the year 1994 (Halle 336). He later became more active and involved in politics and won the Los Angeles mayoral seat in the year 2005. He was later re-elected for a second term in the year 2009.

His political strategies

The Latin politicians in the United States use two main strategies in gaining popularity in the politics of the country. The first strategy is the use of a vast amount of resources in their campaigns. The second factor that helps the Latin in gaining a mileage in the US politics is the issue of seeking a strong support from their communities (Samovar, Porter and McDaniel 233).

The politics of the United States are often marred with ideologies. The fame of the political contestants is derived from their ideologies. However, this is not what is always done in the United States politics, especially in the case of Latin politicians. These politicians are said to spend enormous sums of money on campaigning. In the 2009 elections, Villaraigosa was forced to spend a lot of money nearly fifteen times more funds than his political opponents. This happened at the time when it was claimed that he was facing weak opponents (“Politics” 24). This means that he would have lost the elections if he had had strong opposition. The politics of money is undesirable since it kills creativity in terms of devising a solution to problems a given region or political boundary is facing. Issues are left untouched as people are swayed and influenced by the economic might of the politicians but not by what the politicians can offer to the region.

Objectivity is lost in politics as a result of the deployment of economic might or resources in winning political positions. Therefore, I cannot vote for Latin politicians who use economic power as the main tools of campaigning and influencing people to vote for them.

Works Cited

Cummings, Stephen D, and Patrick B. Reddy. California After Arnold. New York: Algora Pub, 2009. Print.

Geron, Kim. Latino Political Power. 2005. Web.

Halle, David. New York & Los Angeles: Politics, Society, and Culture : a Comparative View. Chicago: University of Chicago press, 2003. Print.

Politics. Plainsboro, N.J: Political World Communications, 2008. Print.

Samovar, Larry A, Richard E. Porter, and Edwin R. McDaniel. Intercultural Communication: A Reader. Boston, MA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning, 2012. Print.