Rise of the Conservative Latinos

by JACK KURTZ, ozy.com
November 27, 2013

Chris Christie’s re-election as governor of New Jersey earlier this month sparked another round of speculation that he would run for president in 2016, and, this time around, that he might choose New Mexico’s Republican Governor Susana Martinez as his running mate. In the homestretch, Martinez stumped for Christie in areas of New Jersey densely populated by Latinos. Statewide, he won a majority of their votes, even more than the vaunted 40 percent that George W. Bush won in the 2004 presidential race.

Democrats dismissed Christie’s success among Latinos as an anomaly that was due to his charisma and praiseworthy response to Hurricane Sandy. They noted the different outcome in Virginia, where Democrat Terry McAuliffe defeated Republican Ken Cuccinelli, who drew attacks for mentioning rat control and immigration policy in the same breath. Perhaps such parries and thrusts are only public pronouncements, and Democratic strategists behind the scenes are dissecting what happened. I hope so, because counting on your opponents to screw up isn’t a sound political strategy.

Republicans are eager to avoid an embarrassment in 2016 like the one they experienced in 2012. They attributed Mitt Romney’s defeat in no small part to his poor showing among Latinos. Almost the morning after, Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus began a hard and steady drumbeat calling for “Hispanic outreach,” a term that paints a picture of aimless Latino voters who are there for the plucking if candidates just show up. Last month, the RNC allocated $10 million to outreach, hiring directors such as Jennifer Sevilla Korn — the former director of the conservative Hispanic Leadership Network — and sending foot soldiers to more than a dozen states to convert Latinos.

So far, Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz have captured most of the headlines, but with support from groups like the Republican National Hispanic Assembly, established in the late 1960s, and newer ones including the Latino National Republican Coalition and the Future Majority Caucus, scores of Latino conservatives have won elected positions across the country. The Future Majority Caucus wants to recruit more than 100 Latino Republicans to run for office in the near future, boasts about its multimillion-dollar fundraising successes and claims responsibility for helping to elect 15 new Latino Republicans in nine states in 2012 alone. This is the Latino conservative political machine at work.

Will a generally conservative platform that largely avoids appeals to the politics of ethnicity win the support of Latino voters?

As Latinos have spread across the country, so have Latino conservatives. Rep. Robert Cornejo hails from Missouri, Rep. Paul Espinosa from West Virginia, state Sen. Art Linares from Connecticut, and state Sen. Ernesto “Ernie” Lopez from Delaware. They’re lawyers, businesspeople and educators. Cornejo graduated from Washington University in St. Louis and is a partner at a law firm in Columbia. Espinosa is the general manager of a communications company and has served as president of a local Rotary Club and chamber of commerce. Before he ran for office, Linares volunteered for Sen. Marco Rubio. And Lopez is an administrator at the University of Delaware.

5 Comments - what are your thoughts?

  • ndnpatriot says:

    Let me preface what I am about to say, by saying I had a lot of Chicano brothers (Mi Hermanos) while serving in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam-Era,
    and I would still give my life for them today! But they were true Americans! They did come to this country for a better life and to acclimate to what it took to become productive as a citizen. And did it legally!
    I currently work in construction, so I have a lot of opportunities to converse with a LOT of illegal immigrants (at least ones who can basically understand what I am asking/saying), and most of them say the same thing when asked why they came to America; to send money back to their family members in Mexico, Guatemala, Brazil, etc… I have also heard they like that what family they do have here qualify for government assistance. The majority I have spoken with have no inclination to learn the english language, or acclimate to our American way of life. Why would anyone claim to want to go somewhere to better their lives, and not want to adapt to what they must to achieve it!?
    I guess that is why 83 billion dollars was sent to Mexico alone so far this year.
    It sure isn’t helping our economy. But I bet the cartels are loving it!!

  • modernminuteman says:

    If Christie is the nominee i will not vote for the first time for i am sick of the GOP picking rino’s and ignoring who the people want. I am sorry but even if Christie would win we would lose as a country. This is just my opinion but i made the mistake of voting the lesser of 2 evils in McCain and i will not anymore.

    1. ndnpatriot says:

      Bravo! minuteman.
      I thought for so long I was all alone with my opinions of the RNC’S choices on so-called conservatives. I even started wondering whether I was a conservative. I am so sick & tired of having to vote for the lesser-of-2-evils! (Romney/McCain were jokes!!). In both cases, no one ever mentioned the fact these nominees lost, was because a lot of REAL conservatives didn’t/wouldn’t vote for them! Now, I am just sitting and waiting for the inevitable……REVOLUTION!!
      I’ll not vote for Christie either!!!

      1. modernminuteman says:

        Thanks fellow patriot!:) The GOP never backs the Tea Party candidates who seem to be the only ones actually representing we the people and yet when they pick the NWO rino’s they want us to back them 100%. We need to let them know we want to be represented or history repeats itself with revolt.

        1. ndnpatriot says:

          Yeah, I love when the RNC contacts me for contributions to stop the liberals, and I am able to tell them I am done with contributing to a cause which backs candidates whom are not willing to stand up for TRUE conservatism,e.g., Closed borders, no pathway to citizenship for people who break into our country, less government, uphold the constitution, and bring back God to our nation!

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