Kamala Harris lands La Opinión endorsement for Senate

California Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris received the endorsement of the Spanish-language newspaper La Opinión in her bid for the U.S. Senate.

California Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris received the endorsement of the Spanish-language newspaper La Opinión in her bid for the U.S. Senate.

(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

One of the nation’s most influential Spanish-language newspapers, La Opinión in Los Angeles, on Monday endorsed California Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris for the U.S. Senate over Democratic rival Rep. Loretta Sanchez of Garden Grove and their Republican challengers.

The newspaper described both as worthy candidates but said Harris had more potential as a national leader.

The editorial also praised Harris for defending “sanctuary cities,” which in some cases limit local law enforcement’s cooperation with U.S. immigration officials, and for supporting healthcare, education and public safety measures for immigrants in the country illegally.

It also noted her support for gun control and environmental protection.


“I’m honored to receive the endorsement of La Opinión,” Harris said in a prepared statement. “This campaign is about lifting up the voices of every community in California and winning results for real people.”

Many analysts believe Sanchez needs strong support among Latino voters to survive the June primary. The top two finishers in that election, regardless of party affiliation, will face off in November to succeed retiring Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer.

Bill Carrick, a strategist for Sanchez, said he did not consider the endorsement a blow to the congresswoman’s campaign but acknowledged that it would have been nice to have.

“I think Latino voters are going to make their own judgment,” Carrick said. “Loretta has a stronger record of service to California, Southern California and to the Latino community. Loretta has been a leader on immigration reform since Day One.’’

Carrick dismissed La Opinión’s assertion that Harris is better suited to national leadership. He said Sanchez has been a leader on trade and national defense issues — she sits on the influential House Committee on Homeland Security and the House Armed Services Committee — and has spent decades working on matters that will come before the U.S. Senate.

According to a Field Poll released in early October, Harris led the Senate race with 30% support among likely California voters, and Sanchez was second with 17%.

Among Republicans, Oceanside Assemblyman Rocky Chavez was the front-runner, with 9% support. Contra Costa County attorney Tom Del Beccaro had 6% and Silicon Valley attorney George “Duf” Sundheim had 3%, according to the poll.

Among Latinos, 35% supported Sanchez compared with 17% for Harris and 12% for Chavez.


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