Jorge Ramos, Univision anchor and the leading voice in Spanish language media, says that President Obama “has a credibility problem right now with Latinos.”
Ramos and many in the Latino media have turned on the President because of broken promises and what they see as a lack of movement on immigration reform.
The credibility issue can be seen in the approval numbers for Obama among Hispanics. According to Gallup, Obama’s approval ratings among Hispanics has dropped 20 points this year.
President Obama won strong support from Latinos in 2008 promising to push forward an immigration reform bill during his first year in office. Ramos said he became critical of Obama after the anniversary of his first year in office, when it became clear that no immigration had passed during his inaugural year as President. Ramos and many others in the Latino media started turning up the heat on the administration ever since then.
View full story at Politico. Read on for a few highlights:
“He has a credibility problem right now with Latinos,” Ramos said. “We’ll see what the political circumstances are in a couple of years, but there is a serious credibility problem.”….
“Words matter,” Telemundo anchor Jose Diaz-Balart said in April on NBC’s “Meet the Press” — adding that Obama’s campaign promise, known as “La Promesa de Obama,” has gone unfulfilled. “We haven’t seen it.” …
The president’s major immigration speech last month only created more discontent. La Opinion, the country’s largest Spanish-language daily newspaper, titled its editorial, “Words are not enough.”
“Obama came up short,” wrote Andres Oppenheimer, a columnist for El Nuevo Herald and The Miami Herald.
“Cheap and easy rhetoric,” La Opinion contributor Jorge Delgado concluded.
“If he was able to get 60 votes for financial reform, if he can get 60 votes to extend unemployment benefits, how come he can’t get 60 votes for immigration reform?” Ramos asked. “So many Latinos feel there is a lack of leadership, and he is not fighting for immigration reform with the same intensity that he fought for health care reform.”
Spanish language media is a major force in the United States. Hispanics make up about 16% of the U.S. population, and by 2050 will likely grow to about 30% . The Census Bureau estimates roughly 3 out of 4 U.S. Latinos speak some Spanish at home, with most Latinos turning to Spanish language stations for their news. (NOTE: Read more at AP: Poll: English-speaking Latinos turn to Spanish TV)
The passage of the Arizona immigration law (SB 1070) served as a reminder to many Latinos that no progress has been made on immigration reform. The reality is that no Party is ideal in the eyes of many Latino voters, a sentiment also shared by most Americans. Many Latinos don’t trust either party, disillusioned by Democrats and untrusting of Republicans.
Clearly immigration reform took a back seat to other issues on President Obama’s agenda, such as healthcare. An issue that Democratic pollster Douglas Schoen has characterized as a disaster for the Party, with 60% of voters disapproving of the measure.
The one thing that is clear from the last two years, is that the Latino vote is not secure for either Party and much outreach must be done to attract Latino voters.