Taveras has support from PAC founded by actress Eva Longoria

By Dan McGowan

Providence mayor and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Angel Taveras is getting a little love from Hollywood.

Eva Longoria, who is best known for her role on the television show Desperate Housewives, has launched the Latino Victory PAC – part of the Latino Victory Project – that will help Taveras and six other Latino candidates from around the country this election season. The group is also supporting Florida gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist.

Longoria told the Washington Post:

“We want to build political power within the Latino community and institutionalize what happened in 2012. There needs to be a movement right now,” Longoria said.  “We can really exercise the potential, because people see the demographic shift and are now saying, ‘Hi, Mr. Garcia. Hi, Mrs. Lopez.’ We want to make sure the names on the ballot reflect that power.”

Of course, Taveras could have one problem with the Latino Victory PAC. If the group purchases television, radio or internet ads in Rhode Island, that would violate the “People’s Pledge” that all three of the leading Democratic candidates for governor signed last week. That pledge does not include direct mailing.

Dawn Bergantino, a spokeswoman for Taveras, said the campaign plans to continue following the pledge.

“We expect they will abide by our request to honor the pledge,” she said.

The Taveras has campaign has relentlessly taunted Democratic rival Gina Raimondo, who is receiving the support of the American LeadHERship PAC, a group founded by former Rhode Island congressional candidate Kate Coyne McCoy. The group has already received a $100,000 contribution from Texas billionaires John and Laura Arnold, who support pension reform initiatives around the country.

Clay Pell, the third Democrat running for governor, is largely self-funding his campaign.

Dan McGowan ( dmcgowan@wpri.com ) covers politics, education and the city of Providence for WPRI.com. Follow him on Twitter: @danmcgowan

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