U.S. Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell had harsh words for President Donald Trump Tuesday evening, contrasting his love for family to that of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.
Mucarsel-Powell made the comments as part of a Zoom conference call hosted by the Biden campaign with Biden’s wife, Jill.
“Just look at Vice President Biden, his family, the love that he has for his children, for his wife,” Mucarsel-Powell said in support of Biden.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen that compassion and that love from this President toward his family. I haven’t seen it.”
Mucarsel-Powell was also joined by two of her Latina House colleagues from Texas, U.S. Reps. Veronica Escobar of the 16th Congressional District and Sylvia Garcia of the 29th Congressional District. The event was hosted by Mariá Teresa Kumar, the president of Voto Latino, as part of a campaign to mobilize Latino voters in the fall.
Mucarsel-Powell argued former Vice President Biden would be better for that demographic if elected.
“I think that Latinos need to realize — for us, where family is so important — we’re going to have a President that’s going to put family first,” Mucarsel-Powell said. “And that means all of us Americans, we’re going to be his family once he takes office.”
The freshman Congresswoman, who represents Florida’s 26th Congressional District, also went after Trump’s record regarding the detention of minor immigrants.
“We have been beaten down. Our families have been separated. This Trump administration has detained children in my district,” Mucarsel-Powell explained, referencing a now-shuttered detention center based in Homestead.
“It’s been tearing us apart.”
Later in the call, she accused Trump of mirroring South and Central American autocrats during his time in office.
“He’s stripping away at our Democratic institutions, he’s on the road to becoming a dictator,” Mucarsel-Powell alleged. “Let me tell you, a lot of Latinos in Florida know exactly what that means.”
Team Trump has sought to push back against the framing, arguing a Biden administration will be the true threat.
“Joe Biden’s strategy to win the Hispanic vote is to uphold leftist platforms like defunding the police and returning to the failed, [Barack] Obama-Biden policy of appeasing the Cuban dictatorship,” said Trump Victory Spokesperson Andres Malave.
“Meanwhile, President Trump values the Hispanic community with a foreign policy that stands up for democratic values and human rights, and an economic policy that empowers our community to achieve the American Dream. Under President Trump, America will never become a socialist country, which is why Floridians will vote to re-elect the President come November.”
Tuesday evening’s call also featured a discussion on the novel coronavirus and how it’s impacting Mucarsel-Powell. She said she’s thankful that she has been able to work during the pandemic, unlike many Americans who have lost work.
“Right now, the toughest part for me has been to travel back and forth to Washington, D.C., knowing that I live with my mother,” Mucarsel-Powell said
“She is over 80 years old and she has some health conditions.”
Jill Biden also highlighted her husband’s $700 billion plan to help the nation recover from the virus’s impact.
“Joe has released a bold plan to recover from this crisis, one that will help create millions of job and build an economy where everyone has a chance to get ahead,” Jill Biden said.
“He know it’s not enough to return to the status quo. We need to build back better.”
The former Second Lady made sure to work in kind words for Mucarsel-Powell and her Latina colleagues as well.
“You are leaders,” Jill Biden said. “You’ve shown such courage during your time in the House: demanding accountability, raising up the voices of the unheard, and demonstrating a kind of sisterhood we don’t see enough of in our leadership.”