Mitt Romney's Pitch to Hispanics Won't Work
If presumptive Republican candidate
After the speech, Democratic strategists noted that Romney -- who clinched the Republican presidential nomination Tuesday after winning the
In addition, Romney has opposed the Dream Act, an Obama administration-backed bill that would give a path to large numbers of undocumented college students who were brought to the country as infants by their parents, and who grew up as Americans.
According to a new national
Most Romney advisers seem to believe that Romney can win in November by sticking to his anti-immigration rhetoric when speaking to conservative audiences, and focusing on the economy and education when speaking to Latino audiences.
They say that nationwide polls of Hispanic voters, such as the new
Asked whether Romney will ignore the immigration issue, Romney campaign spokesman
Martinez added, "Like all Americans, Hispanics will cast their vote for president based on their perception of who is best suited to turning the economy around and creating jobs, which is why we're confident that Governor Romney will attract considerable support."
In addition to focusing on the economy, pro-Romney Super PACS will most likely try to weaken the Latino support for Obama in swing states by running TV ads blasting Obama for deporting record numbers of undocumented Latinos, and for not meeting his campaign promise to pass a comprehensive immigration law. Thus, Republican strategists hope to sway many pro-Obama Hispanics to stay at home on
My opinion: If elections were decided by purely rational reasons and could be predicted with cold calculations on what issues matter the most to voters, Romney could indeed win this election. Polls show that Hispanic voters care more about the economy, jobs and education, than about immigration.
But elections are most often decided by emotional factors, and the fact is that Romney has alienated many Hispanics with a dehumanizing rhetoric against "illegals" that to many of us comes across as Latino-bashing.
Most Latinos don't buy Romney's claim that he is a strong supporter of "legal" immigration and only opposes "illegal" immigration, because that's a deceiving argument. Under the current system, it's very hard for foreigners to become legal U.S. residents, and Romney has opposed a comprehensive immigration reform that would increase the number of resident visas to match the needs of the U.S. labor market.
Romney's ignore-immigration strategy to win over Hispanics won't work. He will need an urgent image remake to come across as more simpático to Latinos, and he can only do that by softening his harsh stands on immigration issues.
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Mitt Romney's Pitch to Hispanics Won't Work | Politics
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