Media Trying to Decipher the Nevada Hispanic Vote Strikes a Raw Nerve with Latino Community

LatinaLista — Yesterday, a Duke University political scientist released some preliminary findings of a study she is conducting on Latinos and declared that when it comes to choosing between Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, Latinos will choose Clinton.

(Source: Salon.com)
Of course, this is released right before the first caucus where the Latino vote actually has a chance of impacting who wins, since eligible Latino voters make up 12 percent of Nevada’s electorate.
But how would Dr. McCain arrive at such a conclusion?
Well, she says it’s because Latinos identify more with whites and seeing that Clinton is white and Latinos being Latinos — it’s a natural assumption.
But if the New Hampshire primary taught us anything at all, it’s that no assumption can be made as to who will have a 2-1 advantage over the other at the end of the night.
After all, the state is home to the gambling Mecca of North America and while bets will probably be placed, everyone knows you don’t count your winnings until the last hand is played.


There is only one thing certain in Nevada’s contest — it will be a showdown between Obama and Clinton now that Richardson has left the race.
Though everyone agrees that Richardson would most probably not have won, he could have had some sympathetic voters in his corner — enough to disadvantage either of the frontrunners.
As it stands now, both parties are racking up impressive endorsements that represent the state’s Latinos.
Obama received an endorsement from the Culinary Worker’s Union, of which represent many Latino workers in the casinos and hotels.
Clinton received an endorsement from the oldest Spanish-language newspaper in the state. News is that she also recruited the talents of her friends Latina civil rights legend, Dolores Huerta, and Congresswoman Solis to campaign for her in the state.
In this instance, that both candidates would campaign heavily, is the only natural assumption that shouldn’t surprise anyone.
But getting back to Dr. McCain’s premise that Latinos will vote for Clinton because she’s white strikes a nerve with many Latinos/as who feel that corporate-owned media (a.k.a. mainstream media) is already trying to create/intensify tension between blacks and Latinos.
Given the fact that it’s basically white political pundits who love to talk this up and can make an hour-long show out of the topic, illustrates how little they care to know Latinos in the first place. A fact that is painfully obvious when they only feature white “political analysts.”
Why is it that white pundits are tapped by cable and network news shows to analyze the Latino and Black vote but pundits of color are hardly ever given the opportunity to do the same?
If corporate-owned media cared to really know the Latino vote, they would know by now that there are Latinos who look: Anglo, Black, Native American, and Asian.
Tell a Black Latino that they relate more to whites is like saying a Jewish rabbi secretly harbors dreams of being Pope — I don’t think so.
I have to admit there are cases where Latinos and Blacks have not seen eye-to-eye but in most of those cases when examining the story, it usually surfaces after a media story that highlights the fact that Blacks and Latinos are different because, being just people, they don’t always support the same issues or candidates — what a surprise.
The bottom line is that both of the Democratic frontrunners (not to ignore the others) appeal to different people — that’s the only natural assumption that can be counted on.

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18 Comments

  1. Texano78704 said:

    So what is the coverage from Univisión and Telemundo like? Not that English speaking media cares… I’m just curious.

  2. adriana said:

    Thank you for again pointing out that Latinos are not only Spanish and Mestizo. They can be of African origin as well. The media, much like the Census, would love to put us all in black and white categories without considering our Native American and African heritage.
    I really think that when we allow the media and even a certain extent political candidates to play off of our differences that we do ourselves a disservice. I think that we need to concentrate on the issues that unite us instead of those that divide us and work towards advancing our collective causes.
    I’m bothered that Hillary Clinton enlisted the BET founder to assist them with this matter as well. That channel is just as guilty as the Spanish language media is of perpetuating this notion that “white is right” or that we should all be buying cars, fast food and dancing in the street. We need to examine more closely the messages coming from Univision, BET, Telemundo, etc.

  3. Maldonado said:

    Good thing I kept reading. You almost lost me on the “Latinos identify more with whites” thing.
    Maybe Dr. McClain is stuck in the 80′s Cuban – Republican era.
    I have two daughters ages 28 and 24. HUGE Obama fans. But they aren’t in NV.
    Anyway, I am a big fan of Hilda Solis and of course Huerta is one of my political idols.
    Nice read (but I found a typo) hehe I should talk, I dont proofread my stuff :)

  4. Frank said:

    So you admit that Hispanics would have voted for Richardson just because he is Hispanic?
    I hope the day comes when the media, our politicians and we ourselves as citizens stop dividing us into ethnic/racial catagories for any reason whatsover. We should all be concerned about every issue but those issues should not be based on what a politician can do for our own ethnic group nor should politicans cater to a certain group. That is what keeps dividing us as a ounntry.

  5. El Loco said:

    So you admit that Hispanics would have voted for Richardson just because he is Hispanic?
    I suggest you check your geography, Frank. Nevada happens to be next door to New Mexico.
    Well, she says it’s because Latinos identify more with whites and seeing that Clinton is white and Latinos being Latinos — it’s a natural assumption.
    One thing is disagreeing with Dr. McClain and another is to misstate the article, which starts “Latinos tend to identify more with whites than with blacks, according to preliminary findings of a Duke University study.
    She’s not assuming anything. That’s what she says she has found.

  6. adriana said:

    Maldonado,
    Why do you think Hilda Solis and Dolores Huerta have thrown their support to Clinton?
    I thought that Dolores Huerta might be more of an Edwards supporter on the issues of labor and poverty.

  7. Frank said:

    El Loco, what has Nevada being near New Mexico have to do with it?

  8. laura said:

    Can someone explain to me why anyone would support Clinton ?
    There are 3 things I personally need ASAP:
    1. out of Iraq – now. Stop the death and destruction, and stop paying $8 BILLION PER MONTH to Halliburton, Blackwater, and Bush’s other friends.
    2. stop the ICE raids – now. Stop turning my friends and neighbors into the new version of German Jews in 1938 – living in daily fear of prison and deportation (they are even using the same word).
    3. universal healthcare for all. Stop letting people sicken and die so insurance companies and drug companies can pay their CEOs hundreds of millions yearly salaries.
    On these 3 very simple issues, Clinton’s record is dismal. She is bought and paid for.
    Once these 3 things are resolved – out of Iraq, stop the ICE raids, Medicare for everyone – we can start to get other things done. Getting these 3 things done under a President Hillary Clinton will not be easier than under a president George W Bush.
    Not to mention – she is likely to lose to someone like McCain in November. And he said we’ll be in Iraq another hundred years.

  9. adriana said:

    Great points Laura!
    I agree that Hillary Clinton would likely lose to John McCain, unless he really blows his top at some point during this election.

  10. EYES OF TEXAS said:

    “out of Iraq”- Do you realize the radical Islamics that are creating the problems in Iraq would cut your head off because you are a female with an opinion? The agenda of these radical Islamics is to convert the world to Islam and those that will not convert will be beheaded. I’d much rather try to destroy them on their turf instead of waiting for them to get a foothold on ours. War is sometimes a necessary evil and this one must be won at all cost.
    “stop the ICE raids”- Ice is totally within their rights to apprehend, arrest and deport everyone who has violated our immigration laws. Unless you prefer being able to pick and choose which laws to enforce and which laws to ignore. If the law is on the books, it is the law and must be enforced.
    “Medicare for everyone”- You mean like Socialized medicine that works so well in Canada? The average appointment is a 4 month wait and once you get to the doctor, he has about 10 minutes to spend with you because he has a waiting room full of other patients that he has to see that day. Doesn’t sound like quality care to me since a lot of Canadians choose to come to the U.S. for major medical problems like cancer, heart disease, or anything that requires specialized treatment.
    The war, the raids, the lack of medical coverage are all serious problems, but must be resolved rationally, not emotionally.

  11. EYES OF TEXAS said:

    Was the choice of the two photos that accompanies this article intentional? Hillary with her pursed lips, evil glare and head held high. Obama with his eyes closed, as if he can’t lock eyes with the evil one, and his head hung down submitting defeat. Doesn’t really matter, at the end of it all they’re both losers. On the “when hell freezes over” day, one of these two wins the election, then it will only mean another four years of having a loser for a President.

  12. Karen said:

    I’m tired of this notion that a vote for Hillary is an anti-Obama vote or an anti-black vote. The media just want to pit factions of the Democratic Party against each other.
    I like Edwards, but he seems to be losing everywhere. So with the two Democratic choices I have before me, Hillary and Obama, I am picking Hillary because she has a better command of the issues and has given specific details as to how she would solve some of the country’s problems.
    Obama is selling hope. And after Monday’s debate, it’s obvious that he isn’t really prepared to be President.

  13. Karen said:

    Adriana:
    I think Delores Huerta endorsed Hillary because of the long relationship the two have, her stand on the issues, and because Hillary has the best chance of becoming the Democratic nominee.
    I don’t agree that McCain can automatically beat Hillary in the general election. He thinks it’s OK if we stay in Iraq for 100 years and he thinks we need to build more nuclear power plants. America is not moving in that direction at all.

  14. El Loco said:

    El Loco, what has Nevada being near New Mexico have to do with it?
    Frank, you wrote
    So you admit that Hispanics would have voted for Richardson just because he is Hispanic?
    in response to
    Though everyone agrees that Richardson would most probably not have won, he could have had some sympathetic voters in his corner — enough to disadvantage either of the frontrunners.
    My point is that Richardson would have done better in Nevada because he is the governor of neighboring New Mexico, which means he is better known and has more of a track record than in other places. Pretty much the same reason you would expect Giuliani to do well in New Jersey or CT. (How the heck Rudy managed to blow that, I have no idea.)

  15. EYES OF TEXAS said:

    McCain has a military background and that alone puts him in a better position to be Commander-in-Chief of our armed forces. The office of President must be held by an individual that will be respected by the nations of the Middle-East and their leaders. Anyone who knows about the Islamic religion is aware that women rank very low, almost reguarded as property. Hillbill will not get the respect from the Islamic nations that will be required to resolve future issues in that part of the world.
    Everyone has already thrown in the towel for the Republican candidates, but as Hillbill and Obama continue to destroy each other it will become evident that neither one has the qualifications to lead our nation into the future. All hope is not lost to have a Republican President.

  16. EYES OF TEXAS said:

    What the country needs is a nationalist instead of a globalist. Put the national needs first and foremost. True, McCain is not the man for the job, but someone with a military background would be a better Commander-in-Chief. People keep forgetting that the President also commands our armed forces, not a job for someone with no experience.

  17. Frank said:

    I am hoping the next president we have will focus more on domestic issues. But yes they do need to be knowledgeable about foreign issues too.
    I don’t like McCain because of his stance on illegal immigration and his coniving with the idiot Kennedy on this issue.

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