Wednesday, July 23, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Another futile exercise for GOP

TomEliasW

By
From page A6 | January 03, 2014 |

Give the Republican Party credit: After drawing fewer than 23 percent of Latino votes in the last presidential election, the GOP will now spend $10 million nationally trying to build permanent ground organizations and “a year-round presence” in Latino neighborhoods around the nation.

But also recognize that this is strictly tokenism: You don’t sway the nation’s fastest-growing ethnic voting bloc by spending less on it than on many campaigns for a single seat in Congress.

You also don’t win over Latinos simply by saying you’re going to be hanging around their neighborhoods and pestering them from time to time.

And you don’t win over Latinos or any other ethnic group simply by recruiting candidates “who look like them,” one of the nostrums pledged by Jim Brulte, the onetime state senator who now chairs the California Republican Party.

Nope, there appear to be only two ways for the Republican Party to win even close to half the Latino vote (about 73 percent of Hispanics cast ballots last time for Democratic President Barack Obama):

One is to run a celebrity candidate a la Arnold Schwarzenegger. Each time he ran for governor, he pulled almost half the Latino vote, chiefly because (exit polls showed), many youthful Hispanics thought having the “Terminator” as governor was cool. Trouble is, there are no prominent celebrities now publicly evincing interest in running as Republicans for any office.

The second way to win over voters — and Latinos are no different than others — is to take policy positions congruent with their views. The GOP isn’t doing this, either.

Its members in the House of Representatives have bottled up the Senate’s immigration bill, even though the plan’s pathway to citizenship for the undocumented is extremely arduous, for about six months, knowing full well it would pass if it ever came to a vote.

They’re still in denial about climate change. They do what they can to thwart abortions. And so on and on.

They believe their stances are congruent with most Hispanic voters on almost all issues except immigration, where many of their leaders are on record saying that unauthorized immigrants all are criminals who cost the American taxpayer billions of dollars.

But polling by the usually reliable Latino Voices firm has found in the last year that Latinos back measures to limit greenhouse gases and climate change, while also favoring abortion on demand and strict gun controls. Plus, several surveys have found Latinos — like other voters — mostly blame Republicans in Congress for last fall’s lengthy government shutdown and the brinksmanship over whether to raise the national debt ceiling or risk defaulting on bonds and other loans.

So the GOP assumption about Latinos eventually joining them because of their adamant stances on social and fiscal issues does not fly.

But it’s immigration that hurts Republicans most. One Latino Decisions survey last summer found that about three-fourths of U.S. citizen Hispanics have either a family member or close acquaintance who is undocumented. Legalizing those people is their No. 1 issue.

But the closest congressional Republicans have come to acquiescing on that issue is to allow some concessions to so-called “Dreamers,” children brought here by unauthorized immigrant parents.

That won’t cut it in the vote-getting department.

Even some Republicans realize this. Lanhee Chen, a fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution who was presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s policy director in the 2012 campaign, told a reporter the party’s message “is going to be very difficult to convey unless we can demonstrate some seriousness about solving the broken immigration system.”

That’s an understatement. The typical GOP outreach effort in recent years has been to eat an enchilada in a Mexican-American neighborhood while listening to a mariachi band.

But Jennifer Korn, the Republican National Committee’s deputy political director for Hispanic initiatives, told a luncheon last fall that the new GOP outreach is different from past ones. “We’re starting early … and we’re going to stay even after the (2014) election is over,” she said.

That’s little more than a repeat of the usual Republican whistling past the Latino graveyard. For the party will win over very few Latinos unless it invests much more and changes some of its fundamental positions.

— Reach syndicated columnist Tom Elias at tdelias@aol.com

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 3 comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Greg JohnsonJanuary 03, 2014 - 8:59 am

    Each time he ran for governor, he pulled almost half the Latino vote, chiefly because (exit polls showed), many youthful Hispanics thought having the “Terminator” as governor was cool. Funny, this is exactly the same reason Obama won the young vote, but it seems that his cool factor is "cooling off" now that they see what Obamacare will mean for them. As pathetic as this piece is, you are right that immigration is the overwhelming reason republicans don't get the Latino vote. Most Latinos are more aligned with GOP principles (social conservatism, religion, the desire to create their own destiny through hard work) but are connected somehow to someone who is or was an illegal immigrant. Immigration reform would be the best thing for Republicans with respect to the Latino vote but it is a huge undertaking and cannot be rushed through with disastrous results like Obamacare was.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • MLJanuary 04, 2014 - 9:10 am

    Didn't Obama go on a radio show in Miami with a host called "The Pimp with a Limp?". Classy.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • January 04, 2014 - 9:28 am

    You're right ML, and he did it on 9/11 when most Americans were mourning our fallen. Worst President of all time.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

News

 
Are arachnids awesome or awful? Visit Bohart Museum to find out

By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Grandparents support group meets weekly

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Kaiser awards grants to Yolo nonprofits

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
NAMI program offers mental illness information, support

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Backpacks for Kids launches annual donation drive

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Architecture in Davis, on ‘Davisville’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Speaker will spin some fishing tales at Davis meeting

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Kids can paint their own Breyer horses at Davis store

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Racial diversity crucial to drug trials, treatments

By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A4

Exchange program seeks host families

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Wine-tastings will benefit YCCC

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Pedro party will benefit Yolo Hospice

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Car lovers will speak Sunday at gallery

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Enterprise is focus of Davis Roots talk

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
.

Forum

U.S. is complicit in attack

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Extinguish extremism for peace

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

With profound gratitude

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Someday, there will be peace

By Rich Rifkin | From Page: A6

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

.

Sports

Former Davis man at crossroads: biking or artwork?

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Aggie golfer headed to men’s U.S. Amateur Championship

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Giants outlast Phillies

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Blue Jays hitting upends Red Sox

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Pyrenees please Nibali, Rogers in Tour Stage 16

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Albergotti to discuss Armstrong’s doping scandal

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8

.

Features

Field to Fork: Skyelark Ranch, not a lark at all

By Dan Kennedy | From Page: A8 | Gallery

 
Name droppers: ASUCD hands out awards

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8 | Gallery

.

Arts

Tomato Festival makes call for young artists

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Additional casting notice for ‘Hello Dolly’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

Hear Los Tres de Winters on Thursday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Picott to play at The Palms Playhouse

By Kate Laddish | From Page: A7

Fairy-tale romance in Barnyard Theatre’s ‘Pinky’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Soar to Neverland with DMTC’s ‘Peter Pan’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7 | Gallery

Village Homes to host Rita Hosking Trio

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7 | Gallery

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Wednesday, July 23, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B6