Top news of the day for all those interested in Hispanics and politics:
Miami Herald: Hispanic Leadership Network To Meet In Coral Gables
Building upon a pro-immigration reform advertising campaign launched last Sunday, the Hispanic Leadership Network (HLN) today announced its third annual Miami Conference to be held April 18-19 at the Biltmore Hotel in Miami, Florida. Under the theme “Family Reunión,” the conference will be chaired by former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutiérrez.
NYT: Democrat Latinos Gain Political Muscle, and Fund Raiser
The New York Times takes a look at the Futuro Fund, a fundraising arm of Obama campaign that raised $32 million from fellow Latinos soliciting donations and engagement in the President’s re-election. The Futuro Fund was founded by “ a trio of Obama donors: Mr. [Henry R.] Muñoz, as controversial in San Antonio as he is prominent; Andrés W. López, a Puerto Rican lawyer with two Harvard degrees; and Eva Longoria, the actress of “Desperate Housewives” fame.
Politico: W.H. Seeks Tech’s Help on immigration
In Silicon Valley the big concern on immigration law is focused on high-skilled foreign nationals whose advanced degrees and unique technology skills are highly sought after, as well as making it easier to allow foreign entrepreneurs starting companies in the U.S. to live here. The challenge for those pro-immigration reform activists pushing for comprehensive reform is to get the tech world on the bandwagon. There is now a strategy to change that. Read more at Politico.
Hispanic are becoming part of the mainstream and see themselves as “American” and this reality is being seen on college campuses who are seeing a decline in “Chicano Studies” enrollees, even with record number of Hispanic college students. KPBS Reports:
He said understanding the community’s demographic evolution is key. The Latinos on university campuses today are the children of the large wave of immigrants who came to the U.S. in the 1980s and 90s, well after the Chicano movement’s heyday.
“It means that many of these young people don’t know what the term Chicano means in the U.S. context,” Mariscal said. “So it’s really the demographic change, and the culture that those new young people bring, that is slowly moving off center stage the term Chicano, and therefore Chicano Studies.”
Unlike the Chicano generation, which saw itself outside the mainstream and was clearly a minority, today’s young Mexican-Americans increasingly are the mainstream. Many are voting, participating in the political system from within. The four-decade-old Chicano movement is increasingly a vague memory, the term imbued with nebulous meaning.
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Hours after Venezuelan
President Dictator Hugo Chavez passed away Democratic Congressman José Serrano (NY) sent a tweet praising the oppressive leader. Serrano worked with Chavez to bring Venezuelan heating oil to the South Bronx. Buzzfeed first reported the tweet from the Rep. Serano – “Democratic Congressman Praises Hugo Chavez In Death”
It’s insulting that a Democrat Congressman, sworn to protect and defend the United States and our Constitution, would praise the authoritarian ruler Hugo Chavez.
Chavez, who was unapologetically un-American, fostered strong relationships with Americas enemies, aiding state sponsors of terrorism including Iran, Lybia, Syria and Cuba. He created a bloc of leftist Latin American regimes united by a hatred for America and a strongly anti-capitalist vision. Chavez used Venezuela’s oil resources to provide financial assistance to rogue regimes and financially support tyrannical leaders in the region and around the globe.
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Posted in Hispanic/Latino, Politics, tagged Dems, economy, Hispanic, jobs, Latino, Mitt Romney, Obama, poll, Republicans, RickPerry, Stats on September 2, 2011 |
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Things are not getting better for President Barack Obama. New polls show continued loss in support and today’s job’s numbers show no new jobs were created in August. Unemployment remains unchanged at 9.1 %. The last time there were zero net jobs created was February 1945.
With the 2012 Presidential campaign season well on its way, and growing support for GOP candidates, the President re-election is on thin ice. A few headlines Democrats should be worried about:
USA TODAY: Obama’s hits another low in another poll
“Voters disapprove of Obama’s performance by 52-42%, compared with 47%-46% in July, Quinnipiac reports. Among whites and men, Obama’s approval rating is in the 30s.
GALLUP: Obama Weekly Average Approval Holds at Term-Low 40%
“President Obama’s approval rating has leveled off at the low point of his presidency, averaging 40% for the third straight week. Notably, his approval rating among several groups that previously gave him strong majority support — postgraduates, Hispanics, 18- to 29-year-olds, and lower-income Americans — is now below the 50% threshold.”
HOT AIR: Poll: Perry 44, Obama 41
“For the first time this year, Texas Governor Rick Perry leads President Obama in a national Election 2012 survey…Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney currently trails the president by four percentage points, 43% to 39%. That’s a slight improvement for the Republican compared to a week ago…. A Generic Republican currently leads the president 48% to 40%.”
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Posted in Politics, tagged 2012, AmericanCrossroads, Colorado, Dems, Florida, Nevada, NewMexico, Obama, Republicans on August 4, 2011 |
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Journalist and political analyst Juan Williams penned an OpEd for the The Hill highlighting the uniqueness of the 2012 campaign. The new presidential election cycle officially started with major ad buys by Republicans and Democrats discussing the economy – in Spanish.
The new early focus on Latinos has much to do with some political realities.
Electoral College vote map of Larry Sabato
1) Battleground States: Latinos make up key constituencies in major “battleground states” like Nevada, Florida, New Mexico, Virginia and Colorado. The political ads aired in English and Spanish targeting major media markets in these swing states. Latinos make up 14% of Nevada electorate, 38% of New Mexico voters and 13% of voters in Colorado. (Pew Hispanic Center)
2) Open Opportunity: Roughly 22 million Hispanics will be eligible to vote in 2012. Latino voter turnout is projected to reach a record 12 million. While these voters tend to register Democrat, they have been a swing vote, securing victories for Republicans and Democrats.
3) Voters Remorse?: Latinos aren’t happy with President Obama. While Obama carried the Hispanic vote by a 2-to-1 margin in 2008, support for Obama among Hispanics has been steadily declining. A recent poll showed his approval among Latinos had dropped by 30 points to 52%. Many Latinos are disappointed with the President due to broken promises on immigration and the failing economy.
Due to these points, and various others, both political parties are ready to spend millions wooing Latino voters in hopes to claim victory in 2012. The fact is, according to the U.S. Census, one in about every six U.S. residents is Hispanic. The Latino electorate will only get bigger in years to come. Neither party can afford to repeat mistakes from the past.
Read the full Juan Williams article via this link The Hill: OPINION: Latin beat marks the opening shot in 2012 election campaign
“…This early battle over the Hispanic vote reveals strategic thinking about how tight the presidential contest looks to be in November 2012. Another telltale sign is that last week, in the middle of the intense debt-ceiling debate, President Obama kept his promise to speak at the annual convention of the Hispanic leadership group La Raza.
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Not sure if it was the candle of La Virgen de Guadalupe I lit, or the reality of a debt deadline and the economic ramifications of a government default, but Congress finally got a deal passed… for my grandmother’s sake, I’ll say it was the power of la velita….
A few thoughts on the debt deal.
- I applaud Speaker Boehner for his leadership. He was able to find common ground with his caucus using only his leadership, and none of the tricks of the past – no earmarks, no pork. The bill isn’t perfect, but it is a step in the right direction.
- This deal was a victory for Republicans and for fiscal conservatives. A Republican controlled House (and a strong Republican minority in the Senate) was able to get a divided Government, where Democrats control two of the three branches, to pass a bill that reduces government spending by over $2 trillion dollars and had no new tax increases. The new GOP is changing the conversation in Washington D.C., and that in itself is an accomplishment.
- President Obama came out of this debate weaker than ever. He never provided a plan, and never showed leadership on this issue. Peggy Noonan was right, he’s a “loser.” VIDEO
From her WSJ column: “So he is losing a battle in which he had superior forces—the presidency, the U.S. Senate. In the process he revealed that his foes have given him too much mystique. He is not a devil, an alien, a socialist. He is a loser. And this is America, where nobody loves a loser.” READ FULL WSJ ARTICLE.
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Latino families have been hit the hardest by the recession, suffering the largest single decline in wealth of any ethnic and racial group in the U.S.A., according to new Pew Foundation study reported by The NY Times.
The news should make the Obama campaign even more nervous about their hopes of victory in 2012. Hispanic voters are already dissatisfied with the current administration. More bad news will only make the relationship worse.
A recent Gallup Poll found Latino support for President Obama has dipped to 52%, a drop of 30 points since December 2009. Over a third of his 2008 supporters said they will not vote for Obama again.
The DNC and the Obama White House has frantically been trying to mend the relationship with Hispanic voters by hosting events, running Spanish-language ads and giving speeches. This week, President Obama addressed The National Council of La Raza, the nation’s largest Latino advocacy group.
The Daily Caller ask the question: “Are Dems worried about losing Latinos?”. My answer is “yes.”
After being chided a week before by the[NCLR's] leader, the President offered hints of support for immigration reform, but was clear about one thing: “The Democrats and your president are with you, don’t get confused about that.”
That statement is reminiscent of the new DNC ad, which will run in the major cities of battleground states featuring significant Latino populations. And Obama’s self-assured sentiment was echoed by Colorado Democratic Party Chair Rick Palacio, who said during a Friday press conference promoting the new Spanish-language ad: “Hispanics’ priorities are not Republican priorities.”
Apart from the GOP, there is another group that may disagree with the confident statements of Democrats: Latino voters themselves.
“The DNC leadership and their spokespeople can say whatever they want about Latinos but the reality is Latino organizations are not happy with Obama,” Bettina Inclan, a Republican political strategist who blogs extensively on conservative Latino issues, told The Daily Caller. “You have the National Council of La Raza saying that Democrats have to woo Latinos more because they realize the broken promises and the horrible economy they’re facing. … I think these political people have to take their head out of the sand and realize what’s going on and the reality is that, the Hispanic vote, the Latino vote, is up for grabs.”
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The San Francisco Chronicle takes a hard look at Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa, his record and legacy in “LA Mayor Antonio Villarogoso takes on big issues.”
Antonio Ramón Villaraigosa, born Antonio Ramón Villar, Jr., became a Latino superstar, when first elected as Mayor of Los Angeles in 2005. He is the third Mexican American to have ever held the office in Los Angeles, and the first in over 130 years. Many throughout the Latino community had high hopes for the new Mayor Villaraigosa. Yet, his career is plagued with public scandals and disappointments.
I spoke to Carla Marinucci, San Francisco Chronicle Political Writer, for the article on the Mayor and the views by some Latinos
“But GOP strategist Bettina Inclan, an expert in Latino politics, argues that the mayor is also “a walking negative stereotype,” citing Villaraigosa’s past personal problems as evidence of a lack of judgment.
“In all his years in office, Mayor Villaraigosa is better known for his personal scandals and ethics violations than for improving Los Angeles or creating jobs,” she said. “Latino voters want someone they can look up to, and Mayor Villaraigosa has routinely come up short.” … READ MORE
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa topped a list of all-time worst Angelenos chosen by online voters on a Los Angeles Times poll.
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The Latino community in Florida has drastically changed in the last few years. Growing numbers of Puerto Ricans, Latin Americans and a new generation of Cuban-American voters have attempted to change the political landscape in the Sunshine State. A recent AP story demonstrates that while Florida Democrats have been able to increase Latino voter registration, they have not been able to convert those number into political power. AP: Florida Democrats Try to Make Inroads with Latino Voters
“…But despite their success on paper, state Democratic officials are struggling to connect with Hispanics, who have little representation among the party’s Florida leadership.
That could spell trouble not just for the future of the party in a state that’s now nearly a quarter Latino, but also for President Barack Obama and U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, who will be counting on Latino support during tough races next year.”
Florida Democrats have done a poor job in cultivating Latino Leaders and investing time in the Hispanic community. In contrast, Hispanic Republicans have risen to some of the highest levels of state political power over several decades, with recent examples like U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, three members of Congress and state House Majority Leader Carlos Lápez-Cantera.
This large pool of articulate and bi-lingual surrogates and operatives for the Republican Party has helped keep the race for the Hispanic vote competitive ensuring attention is kept on the important, and ever-changing, demographic.
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Republicans are gaining ground with the crucial Latino swing vote with the help of a growing number of Hispanic Republicans.
In the 2010 election cycle various Latino candidates gained national attention with their electoral victories including Governor Sandoval of NV, Governor Martinez of NM and Senator Marco Rubio- all of them are Republican.
The GOP has been better at recruiting and supporting qualified Latino candidates. Democrats are worried they are loosing Latino support, and they should be. Many in the Hispanic community want to see more Hispanic representation and Latino Dems are wondering why they aren’t getting the needed support from their Party.
The L.A. Times A1 writes:
“Left is losing its hold on Latinos: Democrats need to do more if they want to counter GOP gains, strategists say,” by Mark Z. Barabak: “Brian Sandoval and Susana Martinez made history. He became Nevada’s first Latino governor. In New Mexico, she became the country’s first Latina governor. … Both are Republicans. For many in the GOP, the twin victories last November, along with the election of Sen. Marco Rubio in Florida, marked an important step in efforts to mend the party’s frayed ties with Latino voters, which have suffered over the last several years of hard-line talk on immigration. For Democrats, the election of the three was something else: a warning sign at a time when Latino support has grown increasingly vital to the party’s success, especially in the battleground states of the Rocky Mountains and desert Southwest. …[T]he Democratic Party … has, in particular, not done enough to help Latino candidates move from city council, legislative and congressional seats to the party’s highest elected offices.” ….
“Nothing sells the message that Hispanics are welcome and wanted more readily than having Hispanics on the ticket,” said former New Mexico GOP Chairman Harvey Yates, who played a major role in Martinez’s success.
Read the full L.A. times story here http://lat.ms/jIwTdk
Blogging from my iPhone
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Posted in Politics, tagged 2012, BettinaInclan, campaigns, Dems, HillaryClinton, Hispanic, Latino, LatinoVote2012, Obama, outreach on June 10, 2011 |
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With the race to the White House heating up, presidential campaigns continue to make key hires to their staffs. Yesterday, CNN reported that the Obama campaign hired Katherine Archuleta as the campaign’s political director. Archuleta will be the first Latina to be a political director for a presidential campaign. Yesterday, the Daily Caller asked me about the implications of Obama’s choice in the 2012 campaign and specifically the Latino vote in “Obama to announce political director for 2012 reelection campaign“.
“It will help Obama to have someone who not only understands the community, but is from the community,” said Republican political strategist Bettina Inclán, a Latina. “Appointing this woman as his political director just cements the importance of connecting with the Hispanic community for his campaign and should serve as a wake up call to Republican campaigns about the pivotal role of Latino voters in this election.”
Read the full piece and the role of Latinos in swing states here.
While Archuleta’s ethnicity does not secure Latino victory for the Obama campaign, it does ensure that connecting with Latino voters is something being considered in every decision and not a campaign afterthought, as it has been in past cycles for both Republicans and Democrats.
America has changed, and we Republicans can no longer afford to wait to the last push of the election to connect with Latino voters. All American’s are facing the same economic challenges. Latino issues are American issues. Hispanic voters deserve, and need to be getting the same message in English (and Spanish), with a culturally relevant approach. The Latino vote is a swing vote and will go to the candidate who best connects with those voters.
Just yesterday, the RNC rolled out their electoral road map to victory and it included states with significant Hispanic populations such as New Mexico, Nevada, Colorado and Florida. If a beefed up, long-term Latino outreach program is not part of the RNC’s strategy to win these states, a GOP victory will be difficult. In recent days the RNC has moved in positive direction and hired new staff.
There is no question that President Obama has an uphill battle with Latinos this cycle. Many are disappointed with President Obama for his multiple broken promises, which is clearly demonstrated in his plummeting approval numbers among Latino voters. Yet, President Obama has always been a better campaigner then President. Archuletta’s hire might be more of a symbolic move for Latinos voters to prove that Hispanics engagement will be important in the 2012 cycle.
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