“Latinos might have differences amongst each other, but we’re also united as one,” said Angel Marin, a retired Army sergeant of Puerto Rican descent who said he’s voted for both Democrats and Republicans. He said he resented Rubio for his endorsement of Trump.
“And when we have someone like Trump, who hits our Mexican brothers, our Latino brothers, then you jump on that bandwagon after all that stuff he says not only about you personally … as a Latino, you’re a freaking sellout. I would not vote for him if they paid me.”
“He’s from the party of Trump,” Gretchen Valentin, who lives in Orlando, said in Spanish. She characterized her feelings toward Rubio as more distaste than dislike. Valentin moved to Florida from Puerto Rico 15 years ago, but said this election would be her first time voting. “I’ve never belonged to any political party, but this year, I’m inclined toward the Democrats. The little I’ve seen of Trump and the Republicans and how hard they’ve made it for immigrants has left me unconvinced with them.”
To a certain extent, the tough crowd may have been a function of the fact that unlike in Rubio’s hometown of Miami, home to the state’s largest number of Republican Hispanics, Latino voters in the Orlando area – who are overwhelmingly Puerto Rican — trend heavily Democratic.