Rep. Jesus ‘Chuy’ Garcia endorses Bernie Sanders, will rally Latino voters in Nevada

Garcia, an Illinois Democrat, will campaign for Sanders in a state where Latino support is a key to victory.

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U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders headlines a campaign rally for then-Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia when he was a candidate for Illinois’ 4th Congressional District, in February 2018. | Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

U.S. Rep. Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, shown at a campaign rally in 2018, has endorsed Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Sun-Times file photo

WASHINGTON – Rep. Jesus “Chuy’ Garcia, D-Ill., who was a leading national surrogate for Bernie Sanders in 2016 endorsed the Vermont senator on Thursday and will head to Nevada to campaign for him in a state where Latino voters are a key to victory.

Garcia will stump for Sanders in Nevada on Friday, in advance of the Feb. 22 caucus.

“I stand with Bernie Sanders because we need a president who is consistent, who has the courage to pursue real change, and who will always choose the people over political gain or expediency,” Garcia said in a statement.

“For me and for a majority of communities across our country, defeating Donald Trump and reversing his inhumane immigration policies is not only urgent, it is personal. Bernie Sanders is the only person who can unite a coalition capable of defeating Donald Trump and can ensure that our country never again rips children from the arms of their families,” Garcia said.

The Sanders-Garcia relationship stretches to 2015, when Sanders backed Garcia’s Chicago mayoral bid against Rahm Emanuel. With the help of Garcia, Sanders almost beat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Illinois primary.

Sanders announced his 2020 bid in February 2019, and Garcia, a progressive, held back an immediate endorsement. As a freshman member of Congress in 2019, Garcia was in no rush to commit since so many of the 2020 presidential rivals were in the House or Senate.

“At a time when Donald Trump continues to use hateful rhetoric and the power of the federal government to divide up our country and terrorize immigrants at the border and in our communities, we need more leaders like Chuy. I am proud to have his support as we say no more to Donald Trump’s cruel and inhumane agenda and look forward to working with him to build a government that works for all,” Sanders said in a statement.

Garcia’s announcement comes after Sanders’ strong showing in Iowa and win in New Hampshire, the states with the first two 2020 votes.

Last Thursday, Sanders endorsed Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx in her Illinois March primary battle.

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