Immigration Woes for GOP: Hey Joe, Stop Hating on Illegals

The GOP’s electoral woes could persist if it continues hating on illegal immigrants.

I must be frank and spill it: I think Obama will probably win this one in November (hope I’m wrong, I’d like to actually find a job before January, 2017).

After the GOP convention and this deadbeat economy, Romney should be up between 5-10 points and beginning to run away with it. Obama should be getting desperate  and there should be a dogfight brewing at his convention. Hillary should be contesting the nomination by now. But none of these things are happening. Why? Because the Dems are confident. With things are as bad as they are in Amerika the incumbent is still neck and neck with the challenger.

How is that happening?

One of the reasons, and one that I’ve sensed, is that Republicans have failed to coax that Latino vote away from the Democrats. Latinos would make much better Republicans — they go to church more, they have better family values than most iPod Gen-Porno Americans, they actually value work… you name it, but the Republicans and their anti-immigration stance have been hating on them now for something like two decades and the Latinos know it.

The Wall Street Journal just did a piece on this great GOP Hispanic vote fumble that shows just how key the Latino vote is both in swing state North Carolina and nationally as well.

As far as the hating on illegal immigrants goes, no one of late has done that more definitively and no one has done  potentially more electoral damage to the GOP than Joe the Plumber, aka, Joe Wurzelbacher.

Lionized by the Tea Party for standing up to Obama on the hustings back in 2008 and now a cameo star in his own right, Wurzelbacher was recently videotaped speaking at an campaign rally for Arizona Republican Lori Klein, voicing his opinions on illegal immigrants.

You can boil his stance on illegals down to one concept: Shoot them on sight.  (The audience applauded this segment of his speech the most profusely, in between their inhales of sloppy ribs and mashed taters.) But the fact is, if and when Latino voters hear about Wurzelbacher’s speech they are not going to ferret out the “legal versus illegal” argument. They are going to hear this instead: “Republicans hate us. They want to kill our brothers and sisters and their children who come here on foot illegally.” There is no way they are going to support that party. That would be like telling an American son or daughter in Egypt to support the Muslim Brotherhood with ties to Al Qaeda.

So, if the GOP thinks it can continue on with its status quo of an anti-illegal immigrant policy, of talking about building border fences or increased penalties for illegals, or even, as Joe the Plumber thinks, shooting them on sight, it should think again.

Instead, the GOP needs to rebrand itself completely. Perhaps it should consider a policy of engagement with Latin America, of proposing doing what the U.S. does best — economic and financial leadership with Latin America; political, financial, economic solutions for its neighbors to the south that would begin to make their counties more sustainable. Because the current mode of thinking — blaming your frustrations on the border runners will make nailing the White House or control of Congress next to impossible without buy-in from the Latino community


About Pete Mladineo

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