A young Latino politician poses a threat to people. They're not sure whether you can represent everybody; it's always harder for the [white, English-speaking] community to feel comfortable with you. So the challenge for a young person like me is being able to prove that you can govern for everyone, not just Latinos and African-Americans.

My agenda is the California agenda. Inclusiveness is a key ingredient to making sure we have an agenda that doesn't leave anyone behind. A whole new generation of leaders is going to help lead the direction of this country for the next two decades. So it is incumbent upon us to take that leadership responsibility seriously, because there are people who say we're too young.

Continue reading this story in the September 2006 issue of KING (#34).