Happy Halloween. Wishing you all a festive, fun and safe Halloween…. Some photos from this past weekend’s Halloween Party here… Below, I just took up sewing again, here is my latest fabric, in honor of my Mexican heritage and Dia de los Muertos.
Archive for October, 2011
When the GOP Presidential candidates stops talking about the economy, Barrack Obama gets closer to victory in 2012. That is why it’s disheartening to see the Republican presidential candidates focus more and more on illegal immigration. Politico’s Morning Score reports:
“ROMNEY TO BLAST PERRY ON IMMIGRATION-PREVIEW: The Romney camp knows that continuing to hit Perry’s Texas immigration record is a real winner for them. So as Perry returns, they plan to ratchet up criticisms. A release going out later highlights Boston’s favorite 60% statistic: “Over the past decade, the number of illegal immigrants in Texas is estimated to have grown by 60%,” spokesman Ryan Williams says in a forthcoming release, shared exclusively with Score. “Governor Perry should explain to the people of New Hampshire why he thinks their opposition to his liberal immigration policies means they ‘don’t have a heart.’”
Herman Cain made news with his statements on an electrified border fence. (He later said he was just joking.) News reports state Perry will continue to attack Mitt Romney on illegal immigration and RomneyCare.
Many feel the Republican Party has a strong opportunity to win over Latino voters who are disappointed with President Obama and the failed economy. Yet, the GOP’s renewed focus on immigration might derail any chance to attract Hispanic voters and win in 2012.
Last week, CNN reported that Democrats in Congress are considering bringing up immigration reform legislation before the end of the year. The purpose is not to pass a bill, but make immigration a political wedge issue, and make the Republican Party seem unwelcoming to immigrants and therefore Latinos.
Marco Rubio, the freshman U.S. Senator from Florida, has been in the political spotlight since his stunning victory in the 2010-midterm elections. Supported by Tea Party activists, independents and Hispanics voters, his crossover appeal caught the eyes of national media. In recent days, the Cuban-American Rubio has been attacked on all sides, for not being Cuban-Exile enough, American-enough and Latino-enough. It’s a ridiculous and shameful assault, which many feel is an attempt to tarnish the career of a promising Hispanic Republican.
This week the attacks on Rubio continue as the media hunts for tabloid stories on the rising Republican star, often mentioned as a potential 2012 Vice Presidential candidate. As reporters and pundits are hungry for new angles in their 2012 election coverage, they’ve sharpened their attacks on Rubio, alluding that he isn’t Hispanic enough to connect with Hispanic voters. Their analysis is an over simplification, at best, of the often-complicated Latino vote.
Senator Rubio has repeatedly stated he is solely focused on being the U.S. Senator from Florida and currently has no interest in higher office. He won his senate seat with a strong majority of Latino voters across demographic and political lines.
In Florida, where Hispanic Democrats outnumber Hispanic Republicans by 105,000 voters, Marco Rubio won 55 percent of the Hispanic vote. He won the support of 40 percent of non-Cuban Latinos in the three-way race against a popular Democrat, Kendrick Meek, and an independent candidate, the sitting Florida Governor Charlie Crist. A Latino Decisions Poll shows that Rubio won as much as 62% of the Hispanic vote.
Rubio helped the Florida GOP appeal to Latino voters in 2010. Only two years before, Barack Obama
won 57 percent of the Latino vote in Florida in 2008. Even now, a recent Resurgent Republic poll shows (more…)
I am often boggled by people who fantasize about living in a socialist country. They talk about socialism, their idea of a perfect utopian society, as if it was a successful model of government. They think of Cuba’s failed system as a “success.”
At a recent Occupy Wall Street rally in New York a former citizen of the Soviet Union confronts two OWS protestors who are advocating socialism and Che Guevara. Watch:
I wonder if this woman, and the millions of liberals who support Che, know that their favorite Communist presided over the Cuban Revolution’s first firing squad and approve the murder of thousands more. Che founded Cuba’s labor camp system, which eventually incarcerate and tortured gays, dissidents, and AIDS victims.
As the election gets closer, and more and more politicos ponder the Latino vote, I wanted to re-post a blog I did a few weeks ago asking: Which GOP candidate will win the Latino vote. The hard reality for all Presidential candidates is that all roads to the White House depend on Latino support. For a Republican to win the general election, they will need about 40% of the Hispanic vote. In the hunt to secure key votes in swing states, candidates will need to woo Latinos who makeup major voting constituencies in battle ground states like New Mexico, Nevada, Florida…
As we move into the final days of 2011 and into the full sprint of the GOP Primary season, here are some thoughts for my Republican colleagues:
Keys to Winning Hispanic Voters:
For the GOP to connect with Hispanics the Republican candidates must understand three key things:
1) Latinos are not a monolithic voting bloc and like all things in campaigns, politics is local. Hispanics in Florida are different from Latinos in Nevada.
2) Don’t change your message, but be culturally relevant and consistent. The last things Latinos want is a slick pandering politician that says one thing in English and another thing in Spanish. (P.S. most Latinos are bilingual.) Candidates must (more…)
I shared my thoughts on the Marco Rubio story with my friend and fellow blogger Melissa Clouthier. She always offers great insight and a wonderful resource. Follow her on twitter or on her blog at http://melissablogs.com.
October 21, 2011 / 6:22 pm • By Dr. Melissa Clouthier
Marco Rubio punched back against the defamatory Washington Post piece. Liberals are loving it because Marco Rubio — an ardently pro-American Senator of Cuban descent can not only lead, but he can give a speech, too — scares them to death. More here.
Articulate minority? Why, he should be a Democrat. How dare he be uppity? Since he isn’t, it’s a mission to destroy him as a person.
A friend of mine, Bettina Inclan, also of Cuban descent was incensed at the hit and said this privately and I asked if I could share her thoughts. Here’s what she said:
“I am beyond disappointed by the Washington Post and their attack piece on Marco Rubio and his family’s history fleeing Cuba’s political turmoil. I keep wondering why they deiced to run this piece now? Is it for the financial gain of article’s author Manuel Roig-Franzia who has an upcoming unauthorized biography on Rubio?
I’m not sure what to be more upset about, Washington Post’s sloppy reporting, their total lack of understanding of the Cuban exile experience, how they conveniently ignore Cuban history or their veiled attempt to try to bruise Marco Rubio, a rising Hispanic Republican star ….
My grandfather suffered for 13 plus years in a Cuban prison because he refused to become a Communist. His experience as a political prisoner and my family’s flight for freedom in America has shaped my political beliefs. My story is similar to thousands of Cuban-Americans whose family history might be slightly different, yet their pain is very much the same. (more…)
In an exclusive editorial to POLITICO Marco Rubio takes on the Washington Post and defends his family’s history:
My Family’s Flight From Castro
By Senator Marco Rubio
That is an outrageous allegation that is not only incorrect, but an insult to the sacrifices my parents made to provide a better life for their children. They claim I did this because “being connected to the post-revolution exile community gives a politician cachet that could never be achieved by someone identified with the pre-Castro exodus, a group sometimes viewed with suspicion.”
If The Washington Post wants to criticize me for getting a few dates wrong, I accept that. But to call into question the central and defining event of my parents’ young lives – the fact that a brutal communist dictator took control of their homeland and they were never able to return – is something I will not tolerate.
My understanding of my parents’ journey has always been based on what they told me about events that took place more than 50 years ago — more than a decade before I was born. What they described was not a timeline, or specific dates.
They talked about their desire to find a better life, and the pain of being separated from the nation of their birth. What they described was the struggle they faced growing up, and their obsession with giving their children the chance to do the things they never could.
But the Post story misses the point completely. The real essence of my family’s story is not about the date my parents first entered the United States. Or whether they traveled back and forth between the two nations. Or even the date they left Fidel Castro’s Cuba forever and permanently settled here.
The essence of my family story is why they came to America in the first place; and why they had to stay.
I now know that they entered the U.S. legally on an immigration visa in May of 1956. Not, as some have said before, as part of some special privilege reserved only for Cubans. They came because they wanted to achieve things they could not achieve in their native land.
And they stayed because, after January 1959, the Cuba they knew disappeared. They wanted to go back — and in fact they did. Like many Cubans, they initially held out hope that Castro’s revolution would bring about positive change. So after 1959, they traveled back several times — to assess the prospect of returning home.
In February 1961, my mother took my older siblings to Cuba with the intention of moving back. My father was wrapping up family matters in Miami and was set to join them.
But after just a few weeks, it became clear that the change happening in Cuba was not for the better. It was communism. So in late March 1961, just weeks before the Bay of Pigs invasion, my mother and siblings left Cuba and my family settled permanently in the United States.
Soon after, Castro officially declared Cuba a Marxist state. My family has never been able to return.
I am the son of immigrants and exiles, raised by people who know all too well that you can lose your country. By people who know firsthand that America is a very special place….
Continue reading the story at POLITICO:
Inspired by “birther” attacks on Marco Rubio questioning his Americanness, the Washington Post has written a hit piece on the Florida Senator claiming Rubio lied about his family history and is not part of the Cuban exile community.
Rubio dismissed the allegations and defended his parents search for freedom in America, insisting that if you’re prevented from returning to your country because of political reasons that makes you an exile. (Scroll down to read Marco Rubio’s full statement)
The Washington Post
reporter writer Manuel Roig-Franzia claims that Rubio “embellished” his family’s history and states that Rubio’s parents are not Cuban exiles because they came to the United States in 1957, before Fidel Castro’s revolution officially took over Cuba in 1959. Roig-Franzia fails to realize that Cuba was in political turmoil during this time, lead by Dictator Fulgencio Batista, and that Rubio’s parents are in fact exiles, because they could not return back to their homeland because of the Communist dictatorship. Rubio’s parents traveled back and forth to Cuba in the early days of the revolution and realized they could not return to their homeland. Sunshine State Sarah describes the situation in Cuba in her post “Aggressively Stupid: WaPo Attacks on Marco Rubio.”
The Miami Herald challenged the Washington Post story saying the paper embellished the embellishments and questioned the reporting. About the only thing the Washington Post “discovered” was an inaccuracy on Rubio’s official website, where it erroneously sites his parents “came to America following Fidel Castro’s takeover.” The Miami Herald notes the rest of the Washington Post is sloppy with the facts. The Washington Post never cites one instance in which the Rubio himself makes the claim that his parents came after the Cuban revolution.
The Miami Herald’s Marc Caputo takes on the Washington Post story:
…But the top of the story suggests Rubio himself has given this “dramatic account:” that “he was the son of exiles, he told audiences, Cuban Americans forced off their beloved island after ‘a thug,’ Fidel Castro, took power.” (Update note: The story struck the word “dramatic”).
However, the story doesn’t cite one speech where Rubio actually said that.
To back up the lead, the Washington Post excerpts from a 2006 address in the Florida House where Rubio said “in January of 1959 a thug named Fidel Castro took power in Cuba and countless Cubans were forced to flee… Today your children and grandchildren are the secretary of commerce of the United States and multiple members of Congress…and soon, even speaker of the Florida House.”
The catch: If you listen to the speech, Rubio isn’t just talking about those who specifically fled Cuba after Castro took power. He doesn’t say that his parents fled Cuba. Instead, he was talking about “a community of exiles.” That is: He was talking about all the Cubans who live in Miami.
Regardless of when his parents left Cuba, they were exiles because they stayed in the US, specifically Miami, in a community where they soon felt they couldn’t go back to their homeland. Though the story said his parents left for economic reasons, it’s silent about the fact that the dictator before Castro, Batista, was so brutal that it made Castro look like a good alternative at first. (Insert debate over the fairness of the post-Castro Cuban Adjustment Act here).
The Post also says “the supposed flight of Rubio’s parents has been at the core of the young senator’s political identity.” That’s a stretch. The actual story of the “flight” is far less emphasized than the fact that Rubio’s an Hispanic Republican, an immigrant and an exile.
So to suggest Rubio serially embellished the “dramatic” story of his parents fleeing Cuba could be a little too dramatic itself. And it might be an embellishment as well — absent more information clearly showing Rubio has repeatedly said his parents fled Castro’s Cuba.
Rubio’s office has told both the Washinton Post, the St. Petersburg Times and The Miami Herald that his parents came to the United States prior to Castro taking power. And he has said it more than once. In the article we wrote last month about his pending autobiography, Rubio clearly told us his parents came here before Castro took power. He struggled to recall the year (this isn’t in the story, it’s in my notes) and said it was in “57 or 58 or 59.”
When asked pointedly: Was it before the revolution? Rubio said it was before the revolution….”
Hispanics have become disenchanted due to Obama’s broken promises on immigration reform. Life under an Obama administration has become harder. Latinos in Colorado are dealing with 13.2 percent unemployment, well above the state average of 8.7 percent. In addition, a record number of Latino children are living in poverty, and Hispanic have been hit the hardest by the recession.
About 20% of Colorado’s population is Hispanic, and represent about 13% of the state’s eligible voters . In 2008, Obama won three out of five Colorado Hispanic voters, with over 87 percent of registered Latino voters turning out on Election Day. Yet, today many of those same Latinos don’t think Obama should be re-elected. The latest Gallup poll has President Obama’s approval rating among Hispanics down to 48%, the lowest of his presidency.
Seeing an opportunity, Republicans are mobilizing their grassroots efforts and engaging Latino voters on the issues. Many see Hispanics as a natural constituency in the GOP. “We are pro-legal immigration, pro-family, pro-entrepreneurial and pro-free-market principles,” said Madeline Rohan, Chairman of the Colorado Hispanic Republicans.
Read more at The Denver Post: “Colorado GOP outreach to Latino voters bets on voters’ disenchantment “
“…Republicans are taking a page out of the Democratic playbook and, for the first time, aggressively courting Latino voters as they organize for what will be a knock-down fight for Colorado’s nine electoral votes in November 2012.
“I recognize the political realities of the changing demographics of the state,” said Ryan Call, Colorado’s GOP state chairman, who has appointed several Latinos to his executive committee. “Reaching out to our Hispanic neighbors is absolutely critical if we hope to be successful.”
Newly formed conservative Latino groups are huddling over messages on the economy, education and immigration. National super-PACs are dumping money into Colorado’s Spanish-language radio and television stations.
And GOP operatives here are brandishing spreadsheets of dismal Latino unemployment rates by state, pointing out that, at least on paper, people are worse off now than they were four years ago…”
Posted in Politics, tagged 2012, BettinaInclan, HermanCain, Hispanic, immigration, Latino, LatinoVote2012, MicheleBachmann, MittRomney, Nevada, NewtGingrich, outreach, RickPerry, RickSantorum, RonPaul on October 18, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
While Obama is campaigning for support of his jobs plan, Americans are analyzing their options for the 2012 election. Tonight, the Republican Presidential candidates will gather in Las Vegas, NV for a CNN debate. Many voters are wondering which of these GOP candidates can offer a real alternative to President Obama? Voters have all but lost faith in Washington D.C. and in politicians to fix the economy. The question is, which candidate can give Americans confidence in America?
The race for the GOP Presidential nomination has been a fascinating spectacle for political junkies given the large candidate field, the fluctuating primary calendar and the unique political environment. The “top-tier” of candidates has been constantly changing as Republican voters struggle to make up their minds. In many ways the 2012 GOP Presidential primary season has always been about two people: Mitt Romney versus the not-Romney candidate.
The last several weeks has cemented Mitt Romney as the GOP frontrunner. Tonight, in the eighth GOP debate, focus will be on Romney as he makes the case that he is the most electable and most likely to beat President Obama. The other focus will be placed on Herman Cain and the one time frontrunner Rick Perry. Even with major mis-steps in past debates, the Texas Governor has been able to hold on to Presidential hopes given his fundraising power.
I spoke to the San Francisco Chronicle about the GOP candidates and specifically if Rick Perry still has a chance to become a top-tier candidate again. I was asked specifically about Perry’s appeal to Latino voters, given that the debate is taking place in Nevada, which has a 26% Latino population.
SF CHRON: “Rick Perry moves to stem immigration backlash“
“Bettina Inclan, a California Republican consultant, said Perry still has a chance to differentiate himself from other Republicans as a candidate with a track record on immigration, in contrast to Cain, who joked this week about an “electrified” fence on the border, and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, who pledges to build a fence the entire length of the border.
‘At the end of the day, Perry is the only presidential candidate who has real experience in dealing with a diverse Latino community,’ Inclan said.”
Things are constantly changing but here some thoughts on what to expect tonight:
Mitt Romney: Expect another great debate performance by the GOP frontrunner. Romney, who exudes confidence, will try to establish himself as the adult in the room. He will make the point that his unique experience in both the private and pubic sector makes him the only candidate to successfully deal with the economy. Romney’s biggest challenge will be to excite the base and get more conservatives on his side. He will likely poke holes in Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 plan, as well as continue to attack Rick Perry, seeing Perry’s Texas size fundraising skills as one of his biggest hurdles in Romney’s road to the nomination.
Herman Cain: A long time Tea Party favorite, Cain he has used his engaging personality and speaking abilities to skyrocket to the top of the national polls. (Leaving many in the political chattering class scratching their (more…)