Wednesday, September 23, 2020

The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Backs Clinton

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The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, giving the presumptive Democratic nominee the 38-year-old chamber’s first-ever official backing of a presidential candidate. Javier Palomarez, chamber president and CEO, told NBC News Latino in an exclusive interview that the chamber chose the Democrats’ presumptive nominee Clinton over Donald Trump, who officially became the GOP nominee at the party’s convention Tuesday night.

He said the chamber broke its 38-year tradition of neutrality in the elections because “these are extraordinary times.” “We are at the Republican convention to announce that we proudly endorse Hillary Clinton for president of the United States,” Palomarez said. “We believe she’s the best person for the job. She’s got experience. She’s got the temperament and track record.”

He said the decision to break with history and back one of the candidates “is an unprecedented step for our organization and not one we took lightly.” The chamber’s board leans Republican, and debate over endorsing Clinton was “lively, robust.” The board also is 50 percent men and 50 percent women.

“We believe they call for extraordinary measures,” Palomarez said. “We believed Hillary Clinton was the right person for this job.”The chamber represents 4.1 million Hispanic-owned firms that Palomarez said contribute more than $661 billion to the economy annually. It includes more than 200 local chambers and business associations in its network. Also, the chamber advocates for over 272 corporations.

“They were all viable candidates at time and the only one who unscripted, unprompted said of her own accord that she wanted to be America’s small business president was Hillary Clinton,” Palomarez told NBC Latino. He said Clinton’s father owned a small business and the fact that “she knows the challenge of small business, of mortgaging a house, of risking everything is critically important to us.” Palomarez publicly announced the endorsement the morning after the Republican convention theme had been dedicated to emphasizing Trump policies on business and the economy under the banner of “Make America Work Again.”

NBC News