So, on July 18th, in its latest desperate attempt, Team Romney released a Spanish-language advertisement entitled País de Inmigrantes (“Country of Immigrants”). It’s Romney’s ninth ad in the Spanish language.
You can view the ad here. Thankfully, it only lasts 30 seconds.
I’m Craig Romney. I would like to tell you how my father, Mitt Romney, thinks. He values very much that we are a nation of immigrants. My grandfather George was born in Mexico. For our family the greatness of the United States is how we respect and help each other, regardless of where we come from. As President, my father will work on a permanent solution to the immigration system. I invite you to listen to him.
My analysis: this doesn’t look good at all.
On illegal immigration at least, Romney seemed better than most of the GOP Presidential contenders (which admittedly, isn't saying much). But he seems to have Etch-A-Sketched all that.
So is the Romney ad really going to attract more Hispanic voters? Don’t bet on it.
Up until now, the polls haven’t shown much movement into the Romney camp by Hispanics.
Latino Decisions released a poll on July 18th, and it showed Barack Obama with an overwhelming 70% of the Hispanic vote. Poor old Mitt only had 22%.
New poll: After SB1070 decision Obama widens lead over Romney among Latinos, [Latino Decisions, July 18th 2012]
Latino Decisions further breaks it down into segments of the Latino population:
* AZ, CO, FL, IA, IN, MI, MO, NC, NV, OH, PA, VA, WI
No matter how you slice it or dice it, Romney is getting trounced by Obama among Latinos.
Does that mean Mitt is doomed to lose the election? That’s what the Professional Panderers would have candidates believe. Pandering to Hispanics encourages politicians to go wobbly on illegal immigration and to not even consider reducing legal immigration.
If Romney wants to be a winner in November, he needs to fish where the fishes are, he needs to appeal to a demographic that will vote for him, and seek to increase his share of that demographic.
There are other polls that would give Team Romney much occasion for optimism, if the candidate and his advisors would just pay attention and think straight.
These polls were released in the article Obama Sinks to Historic Lows Among Blue-Collar Men [by Ronald Brownstein, National Journal, July 11th, 2012].
The article begins thusly:
“The new Quinnipiac University and ABC/Washington Post national surveys out this week converge on one key conclusion: as the election nears, President Obama is sinking to historic lows among the group most consistently hostile to him. Throughout his career on the national stage, Obama has struggled among white men without a college education. But in these latest surveys, he has fallen to a level of support among them lower than any Democratic nominee has attracted in any election since 1980…”
Wow, this sounds like a real opportunity for Romney and the GOP. The blue collar white vote is a demographic the Democratic Party leadership has written off. Why shouldn’t Republicans increase their share of that group’s vote?
Here are the poll results:
Non-college white men
How about non-college white women, sometimes referred to as “waitress moms”? Not much better for Obama:
You would think GOP strategists would be all over this, thinking of ways to appeal to the white working class vote.
The white blue collar demographic has already decided not to vote for Obama, and is most likely going to go for Romney, even though Romney isn’t doing much of anything for them.
The GOP’s strategy seems to be to pander to groups that probably won’t vote Republican and ignore groups that will. The Democratic Party, on the other hand, rewards the groups that vote for it.
But this irrational obsession for the Latino vote is likely to end in disaster by (1) not getting a big share of the Latino vote; and (2) not energizing whites, many of whom may just not bother to vote.
How does the National Journal’s Brownstein explain Obama’s poor standing among working class whites?
“By now, the reasons for Obama's struggles with working-class whites are familiar. Many are culturally-conservative; more are deeply skeptical of government (including his health care plan); and most are struggling in the sustained economic downturn.”
They sound more like the natural conservatives that Hispanics supposedly are.
Brownstein also mentions another factor:
“Polls also consistently show many working-class whites are deeply uneasy about the propulsive racial and ethnic changes that Obama uniquely embodies.”
This is the demographic issue, which I recently discussed in Get the Message, People! Demography is Destiny!
Blue collar whites are not supposed to question the demographic transformation of their country. But insofar as they realize what is going on, they’re not comfortable with it.
And why should they be? They’re the ones who stand the most to lose by it.
What’s at stake here, percentage-wise?
The collective minority vote is increasing, but whites are still the biggest demographic:
“As recently as 1992, non-college whites cast an absolute 53 majority of all votes, and minorities just 12 percent, with college whites contributing the remaining 35 percent. By 2008, minorities had increased to 26 percent and non-college whites fallen sharply to 39 percent of the votes…”
Notice that in the last presidential election, non-college white voters still outnumbered all minorities combined by 12 percentage points.
William Frey and Ruy Teixeira of the Brookings Institute estimate that in the 2012 election, the total minority vote will be up to 29% and the non-college white vote down to 36%. Under that scenario, working-class whites will still be a bigger demographic than all minority voters combined.
These are projections, and we don’t really know yet. It all depends on turnout. The minority vote may be lower. Likewise, if blue collar whites don’t feel that Romney is doing anything for them, they may just stay home.
Republican strategists need to start thinking strategically. Or maybe the party just needs new strategists. If the Karl Rove-types don’t get it, they should be released to find honest work elsewhere.
The GOP needs to really go for the white blue collar vote. Can you imagine how the Democrats would freak out? That alone would be worth it.
And, of course, Hispanics who truly agree with Republican principles—in a word, view themselves as Americans—would still be welcome to vote for the GOP.
Mitt Romney should schedule a major speech in a Rust Belt city. There he could announce a real Get America Back to Work Program—an immigration moratorium. “We need to shut down immigration and get Americans back to work” the candidate could boldly proclaim.
People would love it. It would get Mitt out of his “Cold Aloof Rich Guy” stereotype and make him look more like a champion of the people.
Concentrating on swing states, Romney should talk up solid National Question issues over and over. For starters, stress border control, no amnesty of any kind, and no “Dream Act”. Mitt should threaten to arrest rich employers of illegal aliens and deport the aliens.
The candidate ought also to criticize racial quotas and stress the need to reduce welfare dependency.
These winning issues would resonate with blue collar voters and could increase his share of that large demographic.
Romney needs to appeal to working class white Americans. It could revolutionize the election and American politics.
American citizen Allan Wall (email him) moved back to the U.S.A in 2008, after many years residing in Mexico. Allan's wife is Mexican, and their two sons are bilingual. In 2005, Allan served a tour of duty in Iraq with the Texas Army National Guard. His VDARE.COM articles are archived here; his Mexidata.info articles are archived here; his News With Views columns are archived here; and his website is here.