CLEVELAND, OHIO (WTVQ/AP) – Republican State Senator Ralph Alvarado of Winchester switched briefly to Spanish during his speech to the Republican convention Wednesday night and urged voters to back Donald Trump.
Senator Alvarado, who is considered a rising star in the party by many, says people came to the U.S. from countries that are full of corruption and dishonesty. He’s pleading with Americans not to let that happen in the U.S.
He says in America, there’s opportunity and freedom.
It’s the first time at this convention that a speaker has tried to appeal directly to Spanish-speaking voters.
Alvarado’s speech comes after many Latino groups have labeled Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump as racist for saying a federal judge would not treat him fairly because the judge’s family was from Mexico. Alvarado called Trump’s comments “dumb” but said he is more disturbed by the prospect of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton becoming president.
Alvarado’s father is from Costa Rica and his mother is from Argentina.
Alvarado is a medical doctor who, in 2014, became the first Hispanic elected to the Kentucky state Senate. He says Latinos are naturally drawn to the Republican party for its socially and fiscally conservative platform.