Today, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) announced the unanimous election of its leadership for the 112th Congress. The CHC elected Congressman Charles A. Gonzalez (TX) as Chair, Congressman Rubén Hinojosa (TX) as 1st Vice Chair, Congressman Ben Ray Lujan (NM) as 2nd Vice Chair, and Congressman Dennis Cardoza (CA) as Whip.
Gonzalez succeeds Rep. Nydia Velazquez a Democrat from New York. High on the to-do list for the Caucus is immigration, health care and education. Rep. Luis Gutierrez of Illinois will remain the point person on immigration reform.
The CHC was instrumental in the House passage of health care reform, which Republicans have vowed to repeal when they return to majority status. In addition both the Hispanic and black caucuses support immigration reform that includes a pathway to citizenship for an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants.
Gonzalez said as caucus chairman he would reach out to Republican Latinos in the House to see if there is consensus on some issues that would allow members from both parties to work together for the good of the minority community.