During his campaign, President Obama spoke often of his admiration for farm workers organizer Cesar Chavez and appropriated the Spanish translation of his "Yes we can" mantra.
Today, Obama, who made huge inroads among Hispanic voters, helping him turn Democratic blue several Western states in November, issued a statement marking what Chavez's 82nd birthday.
"Cesar Chavez's legacy as an educator, environmentalist, and as a civil rights leader who struggled for fair treatment and fair wages for America's workers is important for every American to remember.
"Having begun as a farmworker, Cesar Chavez eventually co-founded the United Farm Workers and struggled to provide hundreds of thousands of people with better working conditions and the chance to live a better life. The cause of fair treatment and fair wages for America’s workers lives on today through the work of countless others.
"Chavez’s rallying cry, 'Sí Se Puede' – 'Yes We Can' -- was more than a slogan, it was an expression of hope and a rejection of those who said farmworkers could not organize, and could not take on the growers. Through his courage, Cesar Chavez taught us that a single voice could change our country, and that together, we could make America a stronger, more just, and more prosperous nation.”
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Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.