Norberto Meniano feels as though everything in his life is riding on this election. So when the 49-year-old unemployed restaurant worker knocks on doors for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in Las Vegas, he starts the conversation by talking about himself.
As a native of the Philippines, Meniano shudders at the way President Donald Trump denigrates immigrants like himself. As a gay man, he worries about the direction of LGBTQ rights under a conservative Supreme Court. As the husband of a man protected from deportation by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, he wonders if the love of his life will be forced to leave. And as a cook on the Las Vegas Strip who’s been out of work since March, he fears he will lose the home he bought last year.
Sometimes, Meniano doesn’t even make it through his story before voters are crying in their doorways, tears running down into their masks.
“They tell me, ‘Thank you for doing this,’” said Meniano, who became a U.S. citizen in 2012. “It makes me want to knock on 10 more doors, 20 more doors.”