Dr. Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto

Dr. Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto

About

Victoria is Assistant Dean at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and a contributor to MSNBC and Telemundo. Her areas of expertise in the domestic policy landscape include immigration, Latinos, women and childcare, and economic equity. more→

Research

Victoria brings an interdisciplinary lens to understanding policy development and its intersection with institutional and political contexts. Underlying her academic work is the applicability of rigorous research to on-the-ground policy realities.

Dr. Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto
Dr. Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto

Recent Media

This post originally appeared on NBLatino.

Politics boils down to box checking. It’s not a perfect prediction, but the boxes we check on our Census forms—religion, race, ethnicity, sex, even region—do a pretty good job of describing our political preferences.

Voters and candidates fall into neat categorizations as being Latino, Black, White, Evangelical, Jewish, etc. But as next week’s mayoral race in Los Angeles shows politics has gone outside the box.

The top contenders in the L.A. mayoral race are a melting pot of identities. There’s Eric Garcettiwho is of Italian, Mexican, and Jewish descent. Then there are two women, Jan Perry, who is black and converted to Judaism many years ago and Wendy Greuel who is white but is married to a Jewish man. This race is non-partisan so voters don’t even have the informational short-cut of sorting out the candidates by party.

This race is so fascinating not just because it’s taking place in our nation’s second largest city, but because it’s a microcosm of what is going on in our nation. Identity politics today is more about a mixture than clear boundaries. (more…)