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Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Palabra Final > Politics > Latinos must adopt new strategy to achieve political success

Latinos must adopt new strategy to achieve political success

LatinaLista — Latinos thought giving Barack Obama the majority of the Hispanic vote was the golden key to unlocking political barriers for Hispanic advancement. Yet, the reality is it lies less with Obama and more on how the Latino community shapes its own destiny.
President-elect Barack Obama had barely made the announcement to a packed press conference that New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson was his pick for Cabinet secretary of Commerce when a reporter stood up and asked a question foremost on the minds of most Latino groups — was Richardson’s appointment a “consolation prize” for Latino voters who wanted him named Secretary of State?
Of course, the question was brushed aside with Obama emphasizing, “Commerce secretary is a pretty good job.”
But it wasn’t the high-profile position that would have showcased Richardson’s diplomacy expertise nor the position that several Latino organizations had been actively campaigning for on behalf of the nation’s only Hispanic governor.
Richardson’s placement as Commerce secretary underscored two facts: Latinos still don’t wield enough political influence and the pool of strong Latino candidates for consideration to fill Cabinet positions is disappointingly small.
Addressing one situation could fix the other.
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Comment(14)

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 9, 2008 at 8:31 am

    Why in the world would Hispanics think that by electing Obama as president that it would unlock political barriers for them? We had a Hispanic Attorney General. We have many Hispanic congressmen and in other political offices. Where was there a barrier before?
    In case you forget, Obama is of mixed race Black and White. He is not Hispanic at all so why would he have a special interest in Hispanics?
    Is this the trend now? Vote for someone who will advance your ethnic group rather than voting for a candidate who doesn’t think along racial lines but instead is a politician for ALL the American people?

  • Avatar
    Irma
    December 9, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    My, my. We figured that Obama would be
    open to all people since he is as he put it
    “a mutt. ” So are most of us. I ask you
    since we have had several African American
    Supreme court justices, Senators, US
    Representatives, Judges at various other levels, Secretary of State, High Level Generals etc. – why was Obama’s
    election considered the breaking of a
    barrier? I am being facetious of course, but I just wanted you to see how ridiculous your statement was.
    Is this a trend now ? Of course it is – voters always for whoever they think will advance their cause. If you think politicians dont think along racial lines, you are incredibly naive. Obama was perhaps the ideal candidate BECAUSE
    he could fit in so many different categories of race and social class.

  • Avatar
    Texano78704
    December 9, 2008 at 7:46 pm

    Is this the trend now? Vote for someone who will advance your ethnic group rather than voting for a candidate who doesn’t think along racial lines but instead is a politician for ALL the American people?
    Previously, it was the way of politics when Congress was all Caucasian and all other ethnic groups were suppressed from the electorate. Truthfully, now, voting along ethnic lines is as much about class as it is about ethnicity. The GOP, AKA “the white people’s party,” is about maintaining cultural supremacy as well as its main purpose, maintaining the wealth of the oligarchy.

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 9, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    It shouldn’t be a trend to vote for a candidate based on race or because they will grant special favors to your ethnic group!!! That isn’t what this country is all about.
    Did I say that some politicians don’t think along racial lines? Can’t you read? I said that a politician SHOULDN’T think along racial lines and should be a servant to ALL Americans. No granting special favors to any certain ethnic group!

  • Avatar
    Marisa Treviño
    December 10, 2008 at 8:48 am

    The situation with the Illinois governor shows how idealistic we all must be outside of politics to think that people come into their positions based solely on their skills and qualifications. This situation exemplifies just how prevalent the practice is and those in DC who are fighting to get people of a certain ethnic group or leaning appointed to positions in the new Cabinet know that, for now, this is how the game is played.

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 10, 2008 at 9:12 am

    The game is played that way because of the groups of citizens who want racial politics, not the political candidates themselves. The candidates are merely groping for votes or to stay in office so they go with the flow to get elected. It is citizens who need to change their way of thinking and just be plain Americans rather than stating that for a politician to get into office or stay in office they must grant their ethnic group special favors.

  • Avatar
    Irma
    December 10, 2008 at 10:41 am

    Sandra,
    You are an enigma. You also said “In case you forget, Obama is of mixed race Black and White. He is not Hispanic at all so why would he have a special interest in Hispanics?.”
    You apparently DO think Obama should
    have no special interest in Hispanics.
    I would venture to say that many Americans agree with you. That is why
    every group , including Hispanics, should and must promote their own political agenda. That is politics, we understand how it is currently done-
    LOBBYING.

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 10, 2008 at 5:46 pm

    Why would Blacks, Whites, Hispanics or any other ethnic group in this country have a seperate political agenda? Aren’t we all just Americans? Those who think like you do are dividing this country along racial lines.

  • Avatar
    Texano78704
    December 11, 2008 at 9:22 am

    Why would “whites” or any other ethnic group have a separate political agenda? We could easily ask the same question about different classes in this country. Why would the economically disadvantaged have a separate political agenda than that of the wealthy?
    And since ethnic minorities make up a disproportionate share the economically disadvantaged, I believe you have your answer.

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 11, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    Hispanics are the only ethnic group who have a “political agenda” to give amnesty to illegal aliens just because most of them are ethnically like themselves. Their agenda is to increase their numbers in this country to gain political and cultural control of it. I don’t know of any whites, blacks or other ethnic groups who have that kind of an anti-American agenda.

  • Avatar
    Michaela
    December 13, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    You are correct Sandra, they have an anti-American agenda and they think Americans have no right to protest that treachery and what I consider to be an act of war upon us. Think again.

  • Avatar
    Texano78704
    December 14, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    Hispanics are the only ethnic group who have a “political agenda” to give amnesty to illegal aliens just because most of them are ethnically like themselves.
    And big business is a special interest group that definitely has a political agenda to grant amnesty to undocumented workers. Just pick up any copy of the Wall Street Journal and read about it for yourself. Do you suppose that big business is made up of “whites, blacks or other ethnic groups?”

  • Avatar
    Sandra
    December 15, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    No, big business would rather the illegals were not legalized because then they would have to pay them a fair wage. They like things the way they are. If those already here became legalized, big business would just be waiting for the next crop of illegals that would jump our border and hire and exploit them instead.

  • Avatar
    Texano78704
    December 19, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Is that true, Sandra? You obviously have not been reading the WSJ. You did avoid answering my question, though.

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