Make the Road Action


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Make the Road Action (MRA) is a left-of-center activist group that recruits activists from immigrant, ethnic minority, and LGBT communities to advance left-of-center policy objectives. 1 In particular, the group focuses on increasing the political influence of Hispanic communities. 2

MRA is affiliated with Make the Road New York and its sister organizations in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Nevada. The state chapters engage in issue advocacy while MRA endorses candidates and is involved in political campaigns. The group is also affiliated with the Center for Popular Democracy Action Fund, the sister organization of the Center for Popular Democracy, which promotes a wide range of left-of-center policies. 3

Policy Positions

Make the Road Action engages in left-of-center activism in several areas, especially immigration, education, criminal justice, and labor policy.

MRA opposes the enforcement of United States immigration laws both at the border and within the United States. The group also supports granting citizenship to all illegal immigrants currently living in the United States and eliminating Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). 4 MRA also supports reducing or ending the incarceration illegal immigrants and criminals from ethnic minority backgrounds. 5

MRA supports raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour and building more taxpayer-funded low-income housing. The group also promotes increasing the influence of labor unions. 6 MRA has also called for increases in taxpayer funding for public schools, accompanied by a reduction in the use of disciplinary measures in schools. 7

State Initiatives

In New York, MRA claims to be a “leading voice” for immigrants and minority voters. The group runs initiatives that promote left-of-center policies to voters, especially in New York City. MRA also touts its “long track record” of supporting far-left Democratic candidates in the state as opposed to more moderate, center-left officials. 8

In Connecticut, MRA claims that elected officials do not sufficiently align with the left, even though it acknowledges that Connecticut is a “blue state.” MRA attempts to stop the enforcement of immigration law by interfering with ICE raids and bringing attention to deportations, pressuring local governments into not cooperating with immigration authorities. 9

In Nevada, MRA has been specifically targeting Hispanic voters to increase their turnout in support of Democratic candidates. Noting that elections in Nevada are often determined by slim margins, the group says it aims to mobilize Hispanic and immigrant voter blocs to “reshape” politics in the state. 10

In New Jersey and Pennsylvania, MRA has worked to mobilize immigrant and minority voters to win elections for Democratic politicians. 1112

Candidate Endorsements

MRA has endorsed candidates for multiple elected positions in New York City. Notably, the group endorsed far-left activist Jumaane Williams (D-Brooklyn) for Public Advocate. 13 In August 2020, Williams claimed that New York City police had engaged in a “deliberate slowdown” in enforcing laws and blamed them for “a horrific rise in shootings.” Earlier in the year though, Williams demanded that police funding be cut and threatened to shut down city government functions if his demand was not met. Williams has also demanded that jails be eliminated, repeatedly attributed disparities in arrests to racism, and pushed for replacing police officers with unarmed social workers and “violence interrupters” in responding to 911 calls. 14


Javier H. Valdes is the co-executive director of MRA. He endorsed U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) for president during the 2020 election. 15 Daniel Altschuler is the other co-executive director. He previously worked as director of politics and strategic communications at Make the Road New York. 16


In 2017, MRA generated just under $548,000 in total income, mostly from program service revenue with a small portion from contributions. In 2018, the group’s income exceeded $1.9 million, more than three times that of the previous year. 17


  1. Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  2.        Make the Road Action. “About.” Facebook. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  3. Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  4.          “Issues.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  5.        “Issues.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  6.             “Issues.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  7.        “Issues.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  8.         “New York.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  9.        “Connecticut.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  10.      “Nevada.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  11.           “New Jersey.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  12.        “Pennsylvania.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  13.              “New York City Endorsements.” Make the Road Action. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  14.   Seth Barron. “Condemn, Then Complain.” City Journal. August 21, 2020. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  15.            Laura Barrón-López. “National immigrant rights group endorses Sanders.” Politico. January 15, 2020. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  16.             Daniel Altschuler. LinkedIn. Accessed April 18, 2021.
  17.              Make The Road Action Fund Inc. Internal Revenue Service. 2018. Accessed April 18, 2021.

Directors, Employees & Supporters

  1. Andrew Friedman
    Board Member
  2. Javier Valdes
    Co-Executive Director
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