Raza Unida Party

Raza Unida Party

) is a United States third political party. The official name was "Partido Nacional de La Raza Unida". It was the first third party to be formed around ethnic lines. The party was termed La Raza in reference to the Mestizo people. [http://www.lapolitiquera.com/LA_Politiquera__April_2006.pdf] "La Raza Unida" literally translates as "The Race United."


The Raza Unida Party was established on January 17, 1970 in Crystal City, Texas by José Ángel Gutiérrez and Mario Compean, who had also helped in the foundation of the Mexican American Youth Organization (MAYO) in 1967. In December 1969, at the first and only national MAYO meeting, Latino activists decided on the formation of a third party. This new party would focus on improving the economic, social and political aspects of the Latino community throughout Texas. [http://www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/RR/war1.html]

Following the victory of the RUP in municipal elections in Crystal City, the party grew and expanded to other states, especially California and Colorado.

The novice city council was not very effective in implementing their goals, which damaged the party's reputation in the short-term. The RUP continued to be active, however, and ran candidates for Governor of Texas throughout the 1970s. They petitioned Dr. Hector P. Garcia to run on the RUP ticket, but the conservative doctor refused.

La Raza Unida Party continues today, with chapters active in California, Texas, Arizona and New Mexico. Its official name is "Partido Nacional de La Raza Unida".


* Armando Navarro, "Mexican American Youth Organization: Avant-Garde of the Movement in Texas" (University of Texas Press, 1995)
* Armando Navarro, "The Cristal Experiment: A Chicano Struggle for Community Control" (University of Wisconsin Press, 1998)
* Armando Navarro, "La Raza Unida Party: A Chicano Challenge to the U.S. Two Party Dictatorship" (Temple University Press, 2000)

External links

* [http://www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/RR/war1.html Handbook of Texas Online: La Raza Unida Party]
* [http://members.tripod.com/~larazaunida/enter.htm La Raza Unida Organizing Committee] (Albuquerque chapter, much info about party history)
* [http://members.tripod.com/~larazaunida/hist.htm (image of the mythical land of Atzlan)

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