Ted Cruz & Marco Rubio Try To Ban An Inclusive Term & Get Zero Formal Backers

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Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio are on it… whatever exactly “it” is.

With Cruz sponsoring, the Senators from Texas and Florida have introduced a bill in the Senate that, if approved, would prohibit the use of the term “Latinx” in official communications or forms. “Latinx” is meant to be inclusive and is distinguished in its usage from familiar terms including “Latino” and “Latina,” which in the Spanish language often carry specific connotations of gender.

Cruz and Rubio are the only Senators who’ve formally backed their new measure so far. The level of support for a given measure seen through how many sponsors are onboard is not a perfect measurement for its eventual success, but there is a well established precedent of popular initiatives enjoying cosponsor totals significantly higher than, well, one at an early stage.

“Latinx” is, in fact, currently used in some government communications, though the Senators’ focus on the issue seems poised to garner criticisms alleging that they’re focusing on largely hollow issues.

On a related note, the House recently rejected an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for the next fiscal year that had been proposed by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) and would have cut off federal support for programs in diversity, equity, and inclusion, as it’s known. Such efforts have been a consistent target of Republicans in elected office, like Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Elsewhere in Congress, Republicans have also sharply questioned the need — regardless of the monikers for the initiatives — to be proactive in prioritizing diversity during the hiring process for security-related roles.

“If you have the same people sitting at the table with similar backgrounds, similar experiences, you are going to have a very narrow range of options,” the State Department’s Gina Abercrombie-Winstanley told Rep. Cory Mills (R-Fla.) in a recent hearing, defending the Biden administration’s position.