“Biden needs to be accountable,” said Joe Enriquez Henry, vice president of the Midwestern region of League of United Latin American Citizens, which is meeting for its annual convention here this week. “Biden needs to make it clear, if he wants to be president, that he has compassion and understanding and he needs to ask for forgiveness.”

Enriquez Henry, who is mobilizing Latinos to influence the Iowa caucuses, called the “major deportations” under Obama’s presidency a “terrible time” for Latinos and that Biden “needs to do his penance.”

How Biden navigates the policies that Obama — and he, as vice president — pursued during their two terms could go a long way in determining his performance among Latinos, and potentially his ability to win the nomination. Latino voters hold major sway in the Nevada caucuses, the third contest of the primary season, as well as in the delegate-rich states of California and Texas. And there are signs that the population is more motivated to turn out than it has been in the past: New data from Univision and L2 showed Latino turnout in the 2018 midterms jumped by at least 40 percent across seven battleground states including Arizona, Ohio and Pennsylvania.