WASHINGTON (AP) — Hillary Clinton is receiving the endorsement of the United Farm Workers, the largest farmworkers union in the country.
The union, active in 10 states, has a largely Latino membership, a key voting bloc for Clinton in both the primary and general elections. She received their endorsement over then-Illinois Sen. Barack Obama in the 2008 primary.
United Farm Workers President Arturo S. Rodriguez says the group spent a year discussing the race and recently interviewed Clinton for an hour on her positions.
Clinton, says Rodriguez in a statement, is “the strong, most respectful leader our country needs now.”
“Hillary Clinton has the strong resolve needed to make change happen,” he says. “And she is the best equipped to defeat the nativist, hateful forces of the current Republican front-runner.”
The Latino vote has split between Clinton and rival Bernie Sanders in recent primary contests. Her team sees galvanizing Latino support as a key part of their strategy to defeat GOP front-runner Donald Trump.
The United Farm Workers was founded in 1962 by Cesar E. Chavez and Dolores Huerta — a strong Clinton backer— and works to increase wages and improve working conditions for members.