Sunday, February 14, 2016

Views of immigration by Rubio and Cruz invites backlash from Latino voters

Mary Sanchez explains why Rubio and Cruz are headed for a political cliff. Mary writes for the Kansas City Star and this column was reprinted by the Tucson Daily Star.

It’s striking that in a presidential season with two viable Latino contenders, discussion of Hispanic voters has been negligible.

This will change as the primaries move to states with larger Latino populations, Nevada and South Carolina being first up. In those states, Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio will come under questioning for ethnic loyalty.

This scrutiny will do them no favors. While some may imagine that Cruz or Rubio would get a boost in the general election from being the first Hispanic presidential nominee, either one would only help to hand the White House to the Democrats. The reason is simple: They continue to spurn other Hispanics.

Here we have two children of immigrants trying to get elected by demonizing immigrants. ...

[snip] Read Sanchez's column for analysis of and comments on the anti-immigrant rhetoric of Rubio and Cruz.

A record 27.3 million Latinos will be eligible to vote this election cycle. Nearly half, 44 percent, will be millennials, according to Pew Research Center. Data crunchers believe the eventual winner of the 2016 presidential election will need to draw at least 40 percent of Hispanic votes.

Immigration obviously isn’t the only issue of interest to Latinos; it isn’t even the most important. Jobs, the economy, education rank very high, too.

However, it is a kind of gut-level test about attitudes. Rubio, especially, with his shifting to attract right-wing votes, has jilted Latino voters who would like to like him.

Given their current posturing on immigration, neither Rubio nor Cruz has a chance.

The backlash is coming. A group of high-profile Latino celebrities, including Benjamin Bratt, America Ferrera, George Lopez and Zoe Saldana, organized to call on the GOP presidential candidates to end their anti-immigrant fear-mongering.

Guitarist Carlos Santana, in a statement, underlined the plea this way: “It’s never too late to graduate from the university of fear!”

Sadly, it may be if you are seeking the Republican nomination.

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