Eva Longoria, actress, activist, and Co-Founder of Latino Victory, speaks before Democratic Presidential Candidate Joe Biden as they participate in a Hispanic Heritage Month event at the Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, Florida on September 15, 2020. (Photo by JIM WATSON / AFP) (Photo by JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)
After days of uncertainty following the US election, former Vice President Joe Biden was officially elected as the 46th President of the United States. The win was cinched by a (blue) wave of votes from states like Nevada, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Georgia, where efforts led by Black women overwhelmingly led to Biden’s victory. So why did Eva Longoria try to change the narrative?
During an appearance on MSNBC, the actress discussed the massive impact of voter registration and voter turnout in the 2020 election. Host Ari Melber asked Longoria about the impact that she felt Latinx voters had on the outcome. Rather than simply answering the question, Longoria brought Black women into it, and not in a good way.
Eva Longoria to @AriMelber on the impact of Latina women: “That spirit and perseverance that Latinas use in their daily life, the struggle to pay their bills and the struggle to show up to their jobs … that’s the same perseverance and spirit they used to show up to the polls,” pic.twitter.com/BiATbXbaeG
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) November 9, 2020
“Women of colour showed up in big ways!” she told Melber during the interview. “Of course, you saw in Georgia what Black women have done, but Latina women were the real heroines here, beating men in turnout in every state and voting for Biden-Harris at an average rate of 3:1.”
It didn’t take long before the internet caught wind of Longoria’s Gina Rodriguez-esque (if you know, you know) comments, and they made haste to her Twitter mentions and Instagram comments, pressing her to clarify what she meant. And rightfully so.
To be clear, Black women did a significant amount of the heavy lifting when it came down to many of the swing states that have been historically red for decades. We need look no further than Georgia to see an example of Black women once again saving the day. After Stacey Abrams lost her gubernatorial bid in 2018 (largely due to voter suppression in the area), she channeled her energy into collaborating with local activists to make sure that the tide would turn two years later. Partnering with a number of grassroots organisations in Georgia, Abrams and other Black women helped register more than 800,000 people to vote, a move that put Biden more than 10,000 votes ahead of Trump and ultimately helped win him the electoral college. She and Black women (including Afro-Latinas) across the country didn’t didn’t do alone, but we did it — and trying to downplay that is nothing short of misogynoir.
After the wave of backlash, Longoria jumped online in an attempt to explain exactly what she was trying to say MSNBC.