Romney’s Shaky Alliance Between DREAMers and Nativists: How Juntos Will Latinos Get With the GOP?

This week, the Mitt Romney campaign cranked up the Latino volume in its efforts to better its candidates' current poll numbers among what is becoming a key voting demographic. The release of campaign ads with clunky Spanish-language statements and the announcement of the Juntos con Romney outreach team certainly highlight the fact that Romney needs to make better inroads with the US Latino vote.

Granted, this is the same candidate who during a very intense primary season, aligned himself with the neo-nativist voices of Kris Kobach and Joe Arpaio, as well as the same candidate who has publicly opposed the DREAM Act as it is crafted right now.

From http://whitehouse12.com/2012/06/06/romney-names-possible-vp-picks-to-head-his-hispanic-leadership-team/

Now, with the annoucement of his Juntos con Romney team, Romney seems to be backtracking more and more, as the campaign tries to figure out: how do we get our polls numbers up with US Latino voters to neutralize President Obama's commanding 30+-point lead in polls? The question remains: we know that Romney is now avoiding immigration topics more and more and focusing on thje economy, but has the damage been done with US Latino voters?

It is interesting to note, as reported by Boston.com, that the Juntos con Romney outreach team has several supporters of the DREAM Act, including Florida Senator Mel Martínez, who co-sponsored a 2009 DREAM Act version. This is what Boston.com reported:

A press release announcing Romney’s Hispanic Steering Committee focused on the economy and did not mention immigration. It made four references to “the American Dream” but used the phrase only in the context of Romney’s promise to outperform President Obama in job creation and personal income. “

With so many Hispanic families struggling, we need a leader who will make the American Dream a reality for all,” Puerto Rico Governor Luis Fortuño, an honorary chairman, said in the release.

Part of Romney’s immigration strategy, however, centers on worsening the struggles of some Hispanics — those who come to the US illegally.

“The answer is self-deportation, which is people decide they can do better by going home because they can’t find work here because they don’t have legal documentation to allow them to work here,” Romney said during a January debate in Tampa.

Romney’s plan drew criticism from New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez. “ ‘Self-deport?’ What the heck does that mean?” Martinez said in an interview with The Daily Beast last month. “I have no doubt Hispanics have been alienated during this campaign.” Despite the clash — and the fact that Martinez supports a DREAM Act-style pathway to citizenship — Romney named her an honorary chairwoman of his committee. Martinez said in the press release that she is “proud to stand with him and look[s] forward to working to get him elected.”

Romney has a reputation, dating to his career in business, for soliciting counsel from people with whom he disagrees. The inclusion of DREAM Act backers on Romney’s committee reflects that sensibility, his campaign said.

“Governor Romney and his supporters may not always agree on every issue, but they do agree this country is heading in the wrong direction and Mitt Romney is the right candidate to get the economy back on track,” campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul told the Globe in an e-mail.

The other stated supporters of the DREAM Act on Romney’s committee are representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida and former Florida Representative Lincoln Diaz-Balart. Another member, Florida state Representative Anitere Flores, voted for a state version of the DREAM Act.

Of course, it is no coincidence that Romeny added the Florida Cuban American Republicans to his team as well as Fortuño, who despite heading up an island nation with close to 15% unemployment, might appeal to some Puerto Ricans in the Orlandp area. Maybe this team should have just been called Juntos con Romney en Florida instead?

In an opinion piece today on NBC Latino, Stephen Nuño raises an issue about how the Democrats have failed US Latinos. Hisa argument focuses more on the economy and the President's poor record on immigration. He continues with this:

Republicans want to slash government programs that help Latinos. They want to make the country hostile to immigrants so that they will deport themselves on their own. They compare us to feral pigs, call for electrifying the wall along the border, and discuss Latinos through a prism of cheap labor. Fine, my feelings are hurt. Now what?

And therein lies the problem. Because while Nuño says that his feelings are hurt, we think this entire issue is more that just being offended by Republican rhetoric. The fact is that the culture of hostility towards Latinos, which, quite frankly, Romney has been promoting since the primary season (and to refute this now is just not accurate), does matter. That culture of hostility affects attitudes, divides Americans, and brings out the worst in people who hide behind the American flags and tells their fellow Latino citizens that in the end you are just all a bunch of "illegals." Want proof? Just visit our Facebook page on a daily basis. Tone down the hate among your voters and maybe more US Latino voters will listen to your message.

The economy is important, but so are issues that negatively impact US Latinos. The GOP will quickly tell you that this is not all about immigration. Of course it isn't, but they cannot seriously think that all of a sudden immigration is NOT an issue? Does anyone remember the GOP primaries, where people clapped as candidates promoted protection of our country from the evils of illegal immigration and Gov. Perry was slammed for trying to be a bit more moderate by suggesting that in-state tuition for undocumented youth in Texas is a good idea?

Romney would win more people over if he had the political courage to dissasociate himself from the Kobachs and Arpaios of the world and say that such short-sighted policies do not create a more inclusive Republican party, but we doubt it, because in the end, Romney cannot upset that part of his base. Or maybe he can, because he is banking that that neo-nativist base just wants the "Kenyan" out of the White House. So that is his dilemma. He would gain more Latino support by being more moderate on immigration, but then he would be seen by many supporters as not being conservative and tough enough about immigration.

In addition, thinking that he just doesn't have to talk about the elephant in the room and just focus on the economy will only get him so far. We truly wonder as well if more moderate voices on immigration who are now part of Juntos con Romney understand their dilemma as well. In the quest to win the White House, will you be ok with being part of the same tent as the neo-nativist crowd? Immigration and a reformed system that speaks to the realities of the issue is as Rep. John Lewis, former Freedom Rider, said this week is one of this country's greatest civil rights issues today. Guess the unholy alliances will prosper in 2012, and we think most US Latino voters will see through that.

VIDEO: Mitt Romney Is “The Least Interesting Man in the World”

We are down with this video, because Mitt Romney really is "the least interesting man in the world."

As seen on "Real Time with Bill Maher."

Leaked Video from Gawker Shows That Mitt Romney is the New John Kerry: See You at the Club, Muffy

Oops. In a 24/7 social media world where cameras are everywhere, you just gotta watch out for leaked videos, and Gawker this week published a leaked video that shows Mitt Romney doing the elitist chat with FOX's Sean Hannity. The fired FOX employee is now a member of Gawker.

Mitt Romney is now the new John Kerry after this one. No wonder FOX News is going after Gawker. See you at the equestrian club!

As for Romney, dude, we know you are running for president, but come on, you can't call the President an elitist and then be caught talking about horse breeds. It's cool, just don't play the man of the people angle. Say what you are: a really wealthy guy that thinks he can help the country, no matter how truly out of touch you are with most of America.

BREAKING NEWS: Romney Picks Fortuño For VP—Formal Announcement April 1 in Boston

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
MITT ROMNEY TO NAME LUIS FORTUÑO
AS VP PICK

Romney to Introduce Puerto Rico's VENDEPATRÍA
in an April 1 Press Conference in Boston

APRIL 1, 2012, BOSTON, MA: Fully understanding that the US Latino vote is the key to winning the election against Barack Hussein Obama and realizing that not one Latino on the mainland will even vote for him, the Mitt Romney 2012 campaign has announced a bold new strategy that will transform the election and propel Gov. Romney to the White House. Puerto Rican Governor Luis Fortuño will be named Romney's running mate later tonight at the Park Place Hotel at 5 pm. All press are welcome to the event.

In a joint statement release early this morning by the campaign, Romney and Fortuño shared the following:

ROMNEY STATEMENT
Gee whillackers, I am so happy dippy happy to bring Governor Fortuño to my team. In March, Governor Fortuño delivered an amazing primary victory for me in Puerto Rico, proving that yes, there are some Latinos in this world who like me, even if you have to use fake voters from the PNP's voter list to vote for me. Starting today, Gov. Fortuño will begin to use funds from La Fortaleza's treasury to buy Jet Blue flights for every eligible Puerto Rican voter. We will begin to send the Puerto Ricans to all the of Jet Blue's destinations in the United States. They will register to vote, live in Motel 6's for a few days, and deliver a win for me on Election Day!

FORTUÑO STATEMENT
¡Coño, qué tronco'e leche tengo! This is like the coolest thing ever. Everyone knows that I won't win my own election in November, so this news is basically saving my life. On behalf of Gov. Romney, I vow to literally become the BEST VENDEPATRÍA in the history of humanity, because as you all know, Puerto Rico DOES IT BETTER!!!! Starting tomorrow, the entire Puerto Rican government will become Jet Blue travel agents. We have a lot of work to do, since sending so many Puerto Ricans to the mainland is a tough task. But hey! It's Jet Blue, and they have free Direct TV, and as a special incentive, each Puerto Rican who comes to the United States and votes for Romney, will also get a free lunch at a local Red Lobster and Disney 4-Day Park Passes.

HAPPY APRIL FOOLS!!!!

 

Our Friends at @pochodotcom Release the EXCLUSIVE @MexicanMitt Music Video

A huge kudos to our friends at Pocho.com, the comedic talent behind @MexicanMitt.

Looks like America's First Latino President-to-Be now has a theme song. ¡Ajúa!

 

From Pocho.Com (CREDITS:

Mexican Mitt Romney for President (The Musical)

Lyrics and vocals by Chris Garcia

with assistance from Lalo Alcaraz

chrisgarciacomedy.com

Music by DJ Real

djrealsmells.com

Directed and edited by Paul Encinas

thetryptychgroup.com

Special thanks to:

Brice Frillici at Rooney’s Lodge, Chris Duncan, Dennis Wilen, Lalo Alcaraz, Al Madrigal, the 718 crew, and all the Pochos in the struggle.

DNC Releases Remarks by Reid, Huerta, and González Regarding Romney’s Immigration Policy

The Democratic National Committee released the following tonight:

Credit: AmericasVoice.org

Washington, DC – Senator Harry Reid, Rep. Charlie Gonzalez and Dolores Huerta held a press conference call today Monday, February 27 in light of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s endorsement of Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney has promised to veto the DREAM Act, has embraced the endorsement of Kris Kobach, the architect of the anti-immigrant laws in Arizona and Alabama, has crowned Governor Pete Wilson, a pioneer of anti-immigrant legislation as an honorary co-chair of his campaign, and would have undocumented immigrants self-deport. Governor Brewer’s endorsement and labeling Arizona as a model for a national immigration law further shows that Mitt Romney would be the most extreme presidential nominee of our time on immigration.

Below are the prepared remarks from the call.

Rep. Gonzalez

Thank you for joining us today. Yesterday on “Meet the Press,” the Governor of Arizona and enactor of the extreme anti-immigrant law that paved the way for similar measures in other states, Jan Brewer, endorsed Mitt Romney.

You can now add Jan Brewer to the laundry list of extreme Republicans who have endorsed Mitt Romney, which includes the architect of the Arizona law, Kris Kobach, and former California Governor Pete Wilson.

And, with friends like Mitt Romney’s friends, it’s no wonder he has gone so far to the right on immigration – he would be the most extreme presidential nominee of our time.

Just last week we learned that Mitt Romney would take that extreme Arizona law and use it to model a national anti-immigrant policy.  Yes – he would nationalize the Arizona law.

Mitt Romney promised to veto the DREAM Act, which would help college students who came here through no fault of their own and know no other home.  Saying they want a “handout,” as Romney has done, is a huge insult. The DREAM Act would enable them to earn a path to citizenship by going to college or serving our country.

Romney also once called comprehensive immigration reform “reasonable,” but now he derides sensible proposals as “magnets.” He once said it didn’t make sense to deport the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in this country; now he wants to kick them all out, saying “self-deportation” is the answer for families who have lived here for generations.

Mitt Romney is out of touch with the Latino community and Americans all across the country on this issue, and with every new step he takes on immigration, he makes it clear: He is locked into his extreme positions, and he will only go further to the right – his positions are right wing, radical and wrong.

Now, it is my honor to turn the call over to Dolores Huerta.

Dolores Huerta

Thank you, Representative Gonzalez.

The Latino community faces a key choice in this election. The reason is that these are not ordinary days. Our politicians are not debating ordinary policies. 

The Republican field would be disastrous for the priorities of Latinos. The GOP candidates would slash funding for education, Medicare and Social Security. They oppose the DREAM Act and a path to citizenship for immigrants. They are wrong across the board on the values that have defined American tradition for generations. 

Mitt Romney’s policies would have us all packing our bags and going home. He wants to make things so difficult for our families that we self-deport.  But what he doesn’t understand is that we are home.

Is that the kind of rhetoric we want from someone leading our country?

The problem is that at some point Mitt Romney decided it was more important to associate with extreme elements of the Tea Party. He surrounds himself with the people who would help Wall Street write its own rules, block critical help to middle class Americans and stand in the way of the immigration reforms that have become synonymous with the American way of life for hundreds of years.  

Let’s talk about one close friend of Romney’s – Kris Kobach. He is the godfather of the Alabama and Arizona anti-immigrant laws, but Mitt Romney is proud to have his endorsement. They talk about undocumented immigration not as the story of many families in our community, but as a plague – even though the story of immigration in this country has defined the history and traditions of so many American families.

I was just in Arizona last week – I went to show my support for the DREAM Act students who have bravely decided to step forward and make it clear to Mitt Romney that they will not be scared while he proposes laws that would inject fear into families and communities nationwide. 

Let’s not forget who these kids are. They came here as children. They grew up here. This is their country. Some of them don’t even speak the language of the countries where they were born. 

They are smart kids who care about the future of this country and will organize to make their voices heard. They came out because they want the opportunity they deserve – they want to be the next generation of doctors, teachers, researcher and engineers.  They just want a chance.

But now it is clearer than ever: If Mitt Romney were president, he would let the Kobach-style immigration laws at the state level run wild and loose, and now we know that this is his national model. He would encourage measures that threaten to profile our children and stand in the way of critical support for middle class families like health care, Social Security and education.  Is that what we want for our country, for our families?

And now Jan Brewer, Arizona’s infamous anti-immigrant governor, has endorsed Mitt Romney.

It’s not a surprising pick for Governor Brewer, considering Romney would be the most extreme presidential nominee of our time on the values that middle class Americans and Latinos hold most dear and are the most fundamental to the American traditions that have defined our country for generations.

That’s not how a friend of the Latino community behaves. That’s not how an American who values this country’s traditions behaves. Those are the actions of a candidate who is locked into the most far-right positions on immigration, and whose policies would amount to an attack on our communities. Someone who would say anything to get elected.

Mitt Romney promised to veto the DREAM Act. Does he even know what the DREAM Act does? The DREAM Act, in case he doesn’t know, is about helping college students who came here through no fault of their own and know no other home. The DREAM Act is about our children becoming doctors, teachers, nurses and professors. It’s about giving an opportunity to our military veterans to enjoy the benefits of the country they have fought so hard to defend.

So when Romney tells our kids he would veto the DREAM Act, that may play well with the Tea Party, but it’s a slap in the face to our community and stomps on the very dreams that have defined the American dream. 

Romney thinks DREAM Act supporters want a “handout.” That’s a huge insult. And when that’s the kind of rhetoric that Republicans are pushing, he will only continue to move to the right if he is elected President. 

We know Romney has cornered himself so far to the right that there’s just no way he’ll come back from that extreme position and adopt sensible policies. 

So it’s up to Latino voters. It’s up to us to step forward and let Mitt Romney know: we’re not going anywhere. And all we need is a chance. Mitt Romney may say he’ll veto the DREAM Act. But in November, Latinos will veto Romney.  And we’ll do it through the ballot box. 

Thank you very much. Now I’d like to turn the call over to Senator Harry Reid.

Senator Reid

Thank you, Charlie and Dolores for your words.

Our broken immigration system needs common-sense solutions. Sadly, Republican leaders, including their Presidential candidates, chose instead to cater to the Tea Party, competing for the ‘most extreme’ label.

The only way to fix our broken immigration system is through comprehensive, common-sense reform. We cannot do it without Republicans: our last attempt at passing the DREAM Act failed because 90% of Senate Republicans filibustered this sensible bill.

I call on my colleagues to reconsider their decision to bolt further to the right, and help Democrats and President Obama solve the problem.

Unfortunately all Republicans are talking about are electrified fences, self-deportation and vetoing bills like the DREAM Act —ironically authored by a very conservative Republican.

This is no longer Ronald Reagan’s Republican Party. It is controlled by extremists like Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who legalized the racial profiling of Hispanics through Arizona law SB 1070.

Laws like Arizona’s and Alabama’s that open the door to discrimination against all Latinos, even those who are American citizens and legal residents, do not represent American values.

I am greatly concerned that Mitt Romney has accepted Gov. Brewer’s endorsement.

Gov. Romney had already recruited Kris Kobach, the author of the Arizona and Alabama laws, as his immigration advisor, and called the Arizona law a "model."

Americans want a solution that secures our borders; that holds unscrupulous employers accountable; and that requires the 10 million who are undocumented to register with the government, pay fines, pay taxes, learn English and go to the end of the line to earn legal status.

Americans don’t support misguided laws that have already cost Alabama and Arizona billions of dollars in economic losses.

They are so disastrous Gov. Brewer last week refused to testify in front of the Senate about Arizona’s law, even though she is in Washington all week.

I hope Governor Brewer will reconsider our invitation. If she is truly proud of her law, why turn down an opportunity to defend it?

As we move forward, I hope Republicans in Congress will play a constructive role and call on their candidates to abandon this divisive rhetoric, and support common-sense reforms that will actually fix the problem.

Republicans should join Democrats and President Obama in passing the DREAM Act and Comprehensive Immigration Reform.

If The Presidential Race Were American Idol or X Factor

So if the Presidential race were American Ido or X Factorl, who would you vote for?

President Obama?

Randy, what do you think?

Or Mitt Romney?

Simon, what do you think?

Rep. Xavier Becerra on Pete Wilson Endorsing Mitt Romney: “Dime con quién andas y te diré quién eres”

The announcement that former Governor Pete Wilson endorsed Mitt Romney for President and will serve as an honorary co-chair of his campaign in California seals the deal: Mitt Romney is locked into his far-right positions and would be the most extreme presidential nominee of our time on immigration. 

"From calling the DREAM Act a hand-out and vowing to veto it, to campaigning with Kris Kobach, the architect of Arizona and Alabama’s anti-immigrant laws, to stating that all undocumented immigrants should "self-deport," Mitt Romney has broadcast an unmistakable message of what he thinks of Latinos.

"There's a saying in Spanish that says it all: Dime con quién andas y te diré quién eres. Tell me with whom you walk and I will tell you who you are.  We now know who Mitt Romney is."

"El anuncio de que el ex gobernador Pete Wilson está respaldando a Mitt Romney para presidente y será copresidente honorario de su campaña en California lo confirma: Mitt Romney se aferra a sus posiciones de extrema derecha y sería el más extremo candidato a la presidencia de nuestra época con respecto a la inmigración. 

"Al describir la Ley DREAM como limosna y prometer vetarla, hacer campaña con Kris Kobach, el arquitecto de las leyes anti inmigrantes de Arizona y Alabama, y declarar que todos los inmigrantes indocumentados deben "auto deportarse", Mitt Romney ha difundido un mensaje inconfundible de lo que piensa sobre los latinos.

"Hay un dicho en español que lo dice todo: Dime con quién andas y te diré quién eres. Ahora sabemos qué tipo de persona es Mitt Romney".

 

Full Public Statement of Pete Wilson’s Endorsement of Mitt Romney for President

Our friends at The News Taco posted the news a few hours back. Here is what the Mitt Romney campaign issued today out of its Boston headquarters regarding the endorsement of former California Governor Pete Wilson. California (and National) Latinos are not surprised. Prop 1987 Man is back.

 

Location

BostonMA

United States

Mitt Romney today announced the endorsement of Governor Pete Wilson and named him Honorary California Chair.

“I’m honored to have Governor Pete Wilson’s support, because he’s one of California’s most accomplished leaders. As governor of California from 1991 to 1999, he led California from the depths of recession to prosperous economic recovery. Taking office with an inherited revenue gap of over $14 million, he left his successor a surplus of over $12.5 million. Insisting on strict budget discipline and rehabilitation of the state’s then-hostile environment toward investment and job creation, Pete persuaded Democratic Legislative majorities to enact dramatic tax and regulatory relief especially helpful to small businesses.” 

Announcing his support, Governor Wilson said, “Mitt Romney is an enthusiastic believer in American exceptionalism and has been a spectacular example of it: Mitt has been a success in creating American private sector jobs, a success as the rescuer of the Salt Lake City Olympic games, and as a public chief executive as the Republican governor in the challenging environment of heavily Democratic Massachusetts. It is clear that he will be a success in the White House—as the strong leader America so desperately needs to reverse the unprecedented and utterly irresponsible borrowing, taxing and spending of the Obama administration. And as the most electable top of our ticket, his candidacy will attract the support of Republican, Independent and wise Democratic voters—and is rightly seen by down-ticket Republican candidates as the nominee most beneficial to them in their own races. He is the leader we need to rescue this great nation from the tragedy of a second Obama term that threatens grave and perhaps irreparable harm to both our economy and our national security. Mitt Romney will provide the leadership to create the confidence and certainty of judgment needed to stimulate investment that creates jobs rather than green taxpayer-funded bankruptcies.  He will restore America's strength and credibility, and win back respect for America from both our friends and our enemies.”

Newt Gingrich, Moon President!

In case you missed SNL last night, it's Newt Gingrich, Moon President!

Anything with a Ronald Reagan robot works for us.