To be clear, “no” is an option on unemployment dropping below eight percent or America avoiding an entirely foreseeable entitlement-driven fiscal meltdown. But the DREAM Act, to which Congress has already said “no” several times? Nuh uh. That’s happening this time. At least rhetorically. A solid Hispandering strategy six months out from Election Day deserves nothing less.
“We’re going to keep fighting for this common-sense reform — not just because hundreds of thousands of talented young students depend on it, but because ultimately America depends on it,” the president said at the annual Cinco de Mayo reception at the White House. “‘No’ is not an option. I want to sign the DREAM Act into law. I’ve got the pens all ready. I’m willing to work with anybody who is serious to get this done, and to achieve bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform that solves this challenge once and for all.”…
In his brief remarks, Obama welcomed everyone to celebrate the “tres de Mayo” at this year’s party. The president will spend the real Cinco de Mayo this Saturday campaigning in Ohio and Virginia. “We just like to get the fiesta started early around here,” he joked.
It’s smart of him to focus on the DREAM Act specifically instead of immigration reform generally since it turns up the heat on Rubio’s forthcoming DREAM bill. That’s really win/win for O: If Rubio can figure out a way to get it through the Senate and the House, Obama gets a big signing ceremony he can use to try to make himself the public face of the legislation. If the GOP deadlocks over the bill and it fails, Obama gets to do a round of media hits about how the Democrats are Latinos’ only reliable friends on immigration and how Mitt Romney will certainly bow to conservative pressure if elected and end up opposing future versions of the bill. For that reason, it’s almost unimaginable that Romney will oppose Rubio’s measure, no matter how far it goes as a limited amnesty. Whether or not it’s actually true that immigration will be a key issue for Latino voters — according to Quinnipiac, they’re split nearly evenly on Arizona’s immigration law — it’s enough of a risk that Romney won’t feel safe being on the other side of the issue. Imagine if he and Rubio make the case for the bill nationally and it ends up going down in flames in the Republican House anyway. Romney will have been embarrassed by his own caucus and Democrats will trot out their “Republicans hate Latinos” talking-point demagoguery notwithstanding his support for the bill, which I guess actually makes this a win/win/win for Obama. Remind me again — why is Rubio rolling this thing out now?
Here’s a brutal bit of satire that I’ve been meaning to post for the last few days. It’s a cutting take on identity-politics gimmicks, and of course the Republicans get it far worse than the Democrats. With the Onion, you’ve got to take the bitter with the sweet. Exit question: Is Mitt planning on doing any Spanish-language media hits this year? We all understand he’s going to lose the Latino vote but contesting it would be helpful.
Romney Courts Hispanic Vote With Animated Sombrero-Wearing Parrot