Article first published as Obama 2012 – The Latino Vote on Technorati.
Obama 2012 – President Obama officially announced he is running for re-election this past week. The Republicans are frothing at the mouth to beat him. One problem however, he really has a great chance at winning re-election. Obama is sure bet to get the Latino vote in 2012.
The Latino vote will be a huge factor in who wins. The Republicans realize that they need this valuable constituency if they want to take back the white house. One problem, all polls show that Latinos heavily favor Barack Obama. Of course, this isn’t guaranteed. The Dream Act’s failure is where everyone missed the boat including the democrats. President Obama should have been a more vocal supporter of the Dream Act. Republicans were down right hostile towards this legislation. This would have allowed the children of undocumented immigrants to attend college in the U.S. We missed a great opportunity.
Republicans have been very hostile and hateful towards Latinos and they know it, they have squandered the Latino vote. The Republicans are very concerned about losing the Latino vote. They are concerned to the point that they are seriously considering a Latino as a vice presidential candidate to run with the eventual Republican candidate – Talk about pandering! It’s insulting that Republicans don’t think the Latino electorate will see through this desperate political ruse. President Barack Obama is enjoying a 70% approval rating in the Latino community. Obama appears to have a lock on the Latino vote.
If you consider the hostile anti-immigrant rhetoric that the Republicans have been spewing over the last few years, it’s obvious they are clueless in the damage they have done with Latinos. I could on ad nauseam with the anti-immigrant (which is perceived as anti-Latino) rhetoric. The governor in Arizona is a case in point. Those on the right in other states are calling for an Arizona type immigration bill. This doesn’t bode well for the GOP in the 2012 election. Arizona has successfully alienated the Latino community and squandered the Latino vote.
So who are the potential Latino candidates that the GOP would consider. Marco Rubio, the Republican Senator from Florida is a likely Vice Presidential candidate. He’s Cuban and could sway the large Cuban community to support the Republicans in 2012. The older Cuban population is heavily Republican. However, more and more younger Cubans are leaning towards the Democrats.
Susana Martinez, the Republican Governor of New Mexico is another possibility. She is a moderate conservative who is opposed to same sex marriage and wants to repeal any law that would allow undocumented immigrants access to obtain a drivers license. It seems she is being tougher on her own people so that the Gringo’s can see that she can be trusted.
Brian Sandoval, the Republican Governor of Nevada would also factor into the equation. A real go getter, who seems to be a popular figure in Nevada politics. He is a strong supporter of immigration reform. The chances aren’t as strong for Gov. Sandoval as it is form Gov. Susana Martinez.
Bottom line, the GOP has burned it’s bridge with the Latino electorate. The large masses of Latino voters know that the GOP has not shown them much love. Those who are more “Spanish Speaking” than their American-born counterparts don’t trust them (Republicans). Latinos who are naturalized citizens tend to be very ambivalent towards the GOP. A lot more of them (Latinos) are eligible to vote than you think, don’t count them out. Obama 2012 – the Latino vote is his (Obama) for the taking.
As 2010 looms ever closer, the GOP will see that it may be; too little, too late. Would you trust anyone who’s been beating you down unmercifully, then decides they want to be your friend? I didn’t think so. If Barack Obama is smart (and he is) he should capitalize on this trump card he’s been given.