Thursday, January 19, 2012

Romney immigration myths

So many myths, so little time. From the Mitt Romney campaign:

"We have to follow the law and insist that those who have come here illegally ultimately return home, apply, get in line with everyone else" to gain legal status, Romney said. "To protect our legal immigration system, we have got to protect our borders and stop the flood of illegal immigration." 
Romney also rejected the idea that his position would alienate Latino voters, provided his message is coupled with a vow that he will improve economic growth. "As long as we communicate to the people of all backgrounds in this country that it can be better, and that America is a land of opportunity, we'll get those votes," he said.

First, "get in line" is a farce wrapped in ignorance. The backlog of cases is so massive, so daunting, and judges are so overburdened that we can talk of a line only if in the same breath we acknowledge that the line barely moves. The current system punishes virtually everyone.

Second, there is no flood of illegal immigration. It is hard to imagine Romney not knowing that, given that it has been splashed across all major news outlets. He uses it anyway because he figures it will rile people up who do not know he's wrong.

Third, it is true that Latinos--like all other groups--are focused on the economy, not immigration (this, incidentally, is a myth held by many on both sides of the issue) when considering who to vote for. But Romney is missing the point, because Latinos and immigration reform supporters are listening more to his tone, which is too often bordering on (no pun intended) or crossing over into acidic or at best indifference.


Defensores de Democracia 12:24 PM  

Arizona : Organizations and groups who have ve been fighting on a grassroots level against SB 1070 are now turning their attention to voter registration, get out the vote, and throwing their support behind political candidates, on every level, from city council to U.S. Congres

The genie is out of the bottle now, Latinos in Arizona realize that Republicans are against them. SB 1070-inspired a big protest movement that was very intense, but that level of intensity is not sustainable forever. That’s when people began to run for city council and school board and the state legislature and Congress. The idea was to take the ethos of the grassroots movement to the establishment.
Anti-Latino Politics in Arizona spurs New Political Leadership
By Sara Inés Calderón
January 18, 2012

Some excerpts :

The anti-Latino political environment that has characterized Arizona’s state politics for the past several years is beginning to have it unintended consequence: empowering Latinos in that state to run for public office. What it comes down to is that organizations and groups of people who’ve been fighting on a grassroots level to combat the policies of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and SB 1070 are now turning their attention to voter registration, get out the vote, and throwing their support behind political candidates, on every level, from city council to U.S. Congress.

NewsTaco spoke to a couple beneficiaries of this political environment, as well as the state Democratic Party. As Arpaio is a Republican, and SB 1070 was proposed and signed by Republican politicians, the Democratic Party in Arizona has emerged as the party of choice for Latinos looking to shake up the state of affairs there. And, we’ve been told that the Barack Obama campaign, as well as the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, are investing in these young Latino leaders and organizers in hopes of boosting registration and voter turnout.

Currently there are about 500,000 registered Latino voters in Arizona; 47% are registered as Democrats, 15% as Republicans and 37% as independents.

“SB 1070 certainly served as a rallying point, and we’ve seen consistent evidence of that with an exciting level of enthusiasm across the party heading into 2012,” Arizona Democratic Party Communications Director Andy Barr told NewsTaco. “All the new leaders and organizers who we’ve had step up in the party has already led to electoral success – helping boost turnout for our recent victories in Phoenix and Tucson, as well as in the recall of the bill’s author, Russell Pearce.”


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