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Two Years Too Late, Mitt Romney Realizes that Alienating Latino Voters on Immigration Backfired

 

Will Speaker Boehner Learn the Lesson or Repeat the Mistakes of the Past?

Washington, DC – After his historically low performance with Latino voters in 2012, Mitt Romney is an expert on how Republicans can mishandle the immigration issue and alienate Latino voters.

Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) and other Republicans currently delaying immigration reform should pay attention toRomney’s comments today, as he acknowledged his campaign’s failings with Latino voters and endorsed some variety of a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

As Huffington Post lifts up, Romney appeared today on “CBS This Morning” and “acknowledged Friday that his campaign failed to attract minority voters.” Among his hardline immigration stanceson display in 2012, Romney supported “self-deportation” and ending the DREAMer deferred action program. Yet this morning,Romney said, “I don’t think those who come here illegally should jump to the front of the line, or be given a special deal — be rewarded for coming here illegally — but they should have a chance, just like anybody else, to get in line and become a citizen if they’d like to do so.”

In 2004, President George W. Bush received approximately 40% of the Latino vote nationwide, helping him win Latino-heavy battleground states such as Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and New Mexico. Per a 2012 election eve poll of over 5,000 Latino votersconducted by Latino Decisions, President Obama crushed Romney by an historic 75%-23% margin among Latino voters nationwide and won Latinos handily each of the 11 battleground states polled. As America’s Voice noted in our 2012 post-election memo, “while the Latino electorate’s disconnect from the current Republican Party runs deeper than immigration alone, it will be impossible for the GOP to get a hearing on its other issues unless and until they work to pass real immigration reform.”

According to Frank Sharry of America’s Voice, “Mitt Romney is an expert on how to alienate, motivate, and mobilize Latino voters against you on the issue of immigration. Speaker Boehner and other Republicans should learn up before they lose big, too.”