Our colleagues, Maribel Hastings and Van Le, are in Tampa covering immigration news at the Republican National Convention. Today, the Republican Party will unveil its 2012 platform, which is chock full of anti-immigrant language. Under the leadership of Kris Kobach, the GOP is doing its best to turn away Latino voters. As the poll of Latino voters from Latino Decisions and impreMedia showed, Romney is losing to Obama by a very wide margin among Latino voters: 65% – 26%.
So, what’s the solution? According to Speaker John Boehner, the GOP’s best hope is if Latinos and African-Americans don’t vote.
House Speaker John Boehner is the most prominent Republican to admit, out loud, that his party’s strategy for winning in November doesn’t suppose that the GOP can win over some black and Latino voters, but hopes they won’t vote at all. Boehner wasn’t talking about voter I.D. laws, which are being pushed by Republicans and criticized as disenfranchising minority and poor voters, he did tell a luncheon hosted by the Christian Science Monitor in Tampa Monday that the Republican Party was counting on apathy from the Latinos and blacks who are choosing Democrats over Republicans by record margins in recent polls. As Talking Point Memo’s Benjy Sarlin reports, Boehner said:
“This election is about economics… These groups have been hit the hardest. They may not show up and vote for our candidate but I’d suggest to you they won’t show up and vote for the president either.”
Perhaps he meant those groups would vote third-party, but it doesn’t seem all that likely. Less prominent Republicans have made essentially the same case in other terms.
That’s the best Republicans have when the GOP platform calls for self-deportation and their immigration strategy is dictated by Kris Kobach and Jan Brewer.