Latino Vote: Dispatches from the Battleground

In 2020, Latinos are poised to be the largest ethnicity of voters in the electorate, but wooing constituents based on ethnicity alone may be a losing game plan.

Young and older man registering to vote outside grocery store
NPS Standalone
Premiere Date
October 6, 2020
60 minutes
Funding Initiative
Series and Special Projects
filmmaker Bernardo Ruiz

Bernardo Ruiz

Bernardo Ruiz is a two-time Emmy Award-nominated documentary filmmaker. He has directed and produced four feature documentaries, including The Infinite Race (ESPN’s 30 for 30, 2020), Harvest Season (Independent Lens, 2019), Kingdom of Shadows (Participant Media, 2015) and Reportero (POV, 2013) as well as a host of nonfiction programming. 

Andrea Cordoba

Andrea Cordoba

Andrea Cordoba is a Mexican documentary film producer. She produced Latino Vote: Dispatches for the Battleground (PBS) and co-produced The Infinite Race (ESPN). Previously she worked as the researcher on 500 Years, archival coordinator on Bones of Contention and associate producer on Harvest Season. 

We fund untold stories for public media.

Learn more about funding opportunities with ITVS.

The Film

Voters in Nevada, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania could very well determine the next American president. Inevitably, organizers in both parties are strategizing, mobilizing, and prioritizing; one of the top priorities on both sides of the political divide is to engage Latino voters. Projected to be the largest voting-eligible ethnicity in the country, Latino voters are often sought after by both Republicans and Democrats as if they are a monolith. The reality falls outside of reductive red-blue confines, as illustrated by the Reverend Dr. Gabriel Salguero, who says of Latino Evangelical voters like himself, “We’re politically homeless.” With both younger Latinos and new citizens joining the ranks of registered voters across the country, the growing magnitude of this cross-section of the electorate has clear political implications for the 2020 presidential election. But trying to woo voters based on their cultural similarities without factoring in their complex and varying individual interests could prove to be a losing game plan. Following activists, organizers, and others who are working to maximize Latino turnout in their local communities while simultaneously devoting their efforts to COVID-19 relief as the pandemic surges, Latino Vote: Dispatches from the Battleground delves into the high-stakes fight to activate Latino votes in these battleground states – and gives voice to newly registered Latino voters themselves about what the galvanizing issues are for them.