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Republicans hope to pull in much of Hispanic vote

A panel of prominent Republicans briefly backed off the party’s hottest topic – Sarah Palin – Thursday morning to talk about how they can win over more minorities to help them win the presidential race.

The five participants, including former White House adviser Karl Rove, tackled the question at a breakfast program, last in a series sponsored this week by, the Pioneer Press and at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in St. Paul. Panelists zeroed in on their party’s need to pay particular attention to minorities who already identify with Republicans and to bring more Hispanic voters into the GOP fold.

“We need to make sure we’re taking care of the black and other minority voters that support us first of all,” said Tara Wall, an editor at the Washington Times and one of three black members of the panel. “The party needs to spend more time growing the grass roots and continuing with that outreach.”

Al Cardenas, a former Florida GOP chairman who is of Hispanic origin, said polls show that many Hispanics share Republicans’ key values, including religion and strong extended family ties. He cited “an explosion” of Hispanics in the evangelical Christian movement as well as those becoming owners of small businesses, such as hair salons, auto shops and convenience stores. In those roles, their concerns become “lowering taxes and lowering health-care costs,” he said.

Palin popularity a good thing?
The program wasn’t in session for long before Palin’s name crept in, fresh on everyone’s mind after her speech Wednesday night that displayed her toughness mixed with down-home charm. Panelist and political commentator Armstrong Williams called her “the cat’s meow.” Talk of a growing buzz about Palin as a newcomer to the scene turned to a question of the challenge it could become: making sure Palin doesn’t overshadow the man who put her name next to his on the presidential ticket.

Rove pointed out that in a normal contest, vice-presidential candidates have a minimal influence – about 1 percent – on a presidential race. “But this may not be a normal election,” he said of the vote that is 61 days away.

Jobs, economy hottest issues
Mike Allen, panel moderator and Politico’s chief political writer, asked what McCain should be talking about. Rove: “Kitchen-table issues – jobs and the economy.” They fall outside his primary comfort zone, which is international issues, he said. It would be good, too, for McCain to “share more of his interior self,” Rove said. Others have relayed stories about his history as a prisoner of war and other experiences. But McCain remains “the most private person,” Rove said.

Panelist and former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell said he’s confident that Palin will “complement, not compete” with McCain. “Keep an eye on how she resonates in suburban and rural areas,” he said. McCain will benefit from his broad appeal, Blackwell said. Williams said, “Black people are going to vote for Barack Obama because he’s black.” Wall agreed, adding, “It’s unfortunate in some ways, but I understand it.”

The panel pointed to Virginia, Colorado, Michigan and Ohio as key states in determining which party will take the presidential race in November. 

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Dave Francis on 09/04/2008 - 04:58 pm.

    True Conservatives are correct about any immigration legislation. Somewhere around 80 percent of the US population want enforcement of our borders and strict laws to stop the illegal alien invasion. So where does Governor Sarah Palin stand on the festering issue? Neither party for decades have shown any real basis to trust them? Illegal immigration has got out-of-control and the estimated numbers put out by the administration has been doctored. The laws enacted after the 1986 Simpson/Mazzoli bill gave 3 million guest workers a chance at citizenship. Ted Kennedy who was the floor manager for this Federal bill promised no more Amnesty. He lied to the American people. Within the Bush reign Kennedy tried, with a complement of both parties, all but secretly nearly passed another bill. However when the people heard of this silent conspiracy their voices were heard loud and clear. NO AMNESTY! NO PATH TO CITIZENSHIP!

    It costs the taxpayer to much money. It’s stealing jobs from citizens and legal residents and offers nothing to America, but OVERPOPULATION and chain migration.The major issue was the loophole that was inserted called the “Family Reunification Act.” New immigrant citizens could bring in parents and siblings, who could bring in their spouses. They, in turn, could bring in their family members–a chain migration. By 1970, there were so many disabled, and elderly parents that the government had to assist them. The government started Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and even SDI. That also included Medicaid, and some got food stamps and a housing allowances.

    It’s outcome is family reunion and extra costs for the disabled, mentally sick and elderly that never paid into the system. US.Taxpayers would be forever paying for the extended families and all those they sponsor.

    Everybody is crying about the Economy? But do you realize the amount of money taxpayers are contributing to the lifestyles of illegal aliens.You are supporting their free health care, education and more than the unsuspecting taxpayers realizes. Forcibly assign to you by the parasite employers all around us. Both Presidential candidates are going to deliver to their corporate donors and special interest groups AMNESTY! That will lead to OVERPOPULATION, because the census estimates we will another 120 million more mouths to feed in just twenty years. A 50% increase in people. But what about the millions, just waiting to scramble across our undermanned border?

    The SAVE ACT (H.R.4088) is our last chance. Read about America’s Optional Future – 439 Million by Mid-Century. Can we afford this future? We are importing poverty in large numbers at our undermanned borders. Democrats are mainly to blame. A sham of an underfunded border fence. WE MUST TELL THESE HIRED HELP IN WASHINGTON DEC, AND ELECTED OFFICIAL WE NEED HARSHER PENALTIES, FOR THOSE WHO STEAL ACROSS OUR BORDER. WE NEED THE FEDERAL SAVE ACT (H.R.4088) NOW. UNRESTRICTED FACTS AT NUMBERSUSA, CAPSWEB.

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