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Waco Hispanic Republican group sends GOP clear message: If the party won’t change, they’ll do it for them

LatinaLista — The big question since the GOP lost the Latino vote in the 2008 presidential election has been: How serious are Republicans about including Latinos in the GOP?


The answer, fresh from the heart of GOP country — Waco, Texas — is not at all!

It seems some Latino Republicans in McLennan County recognized that their local GOP is not doing enough to go after Latinos, blacks and young adult voters. Fed up, they created their own club this past fall and call themselves the Hispanic Republican Club of McLennan County (HRCMC).

Well, it seems this little upstart group ruffled the feathers of the head honchos of the local GOP and a memo was issued to all Republican members from county GOP leader M.A. Taylor. In part, the memo said that the new group was “not sanctioned by, nor is it affiliated with, the Republican Party of McLennan County.”
Logo for Hispanic Republican Club of McLennan County


Needless to say, this declaration surprised the founders of the Hispanic Republican group.

“I expected to be hit by the Democratic Party, not by Republicans,” said Duke Machado, the creator of the group.

Janet Jackson, a conservative activist from Bosque County who is working with Machado on the club, said the party has a bad track record when it comes to bringing minorities and young people into the fold.

Jackson said the club’s mission includes recruiting Republicans to fill empty precinct chairs in minority neighborhoods.

The Republican Party lacks precinct chairs in about 40 precincts countywide.

The idea that the main GOP party would disassociate itself from a group that only wants to grow their party is laughable and underscores the fact that the GOP is its own worst enemy when it comes to preventing their party from stagnating into irrelevance.

Yet, this isn’t the whole story.

When the longtime GOP county leader M.A. Taylor was pressed about what was so wrong about the Hispanic Republican Club of McLennan County recruiting members to be precinct chairs in minority neighborhoods, what emerged from Taylor’s mouth was a clear sign of how little he knows — or wants to know — Latinos.



Taylor’s response was:

“They think because there are 92 precincts in McLennan County, we need to have 92 precinct chairs,” Taylor said. “What they fail to understand is about half of those precincts are minority precincts, and you’re not going to find any Republicans in them.”

Maybe it’s because nobody asked them.

A casual review of the Latino voting record shows that, historically, Latinos have identified with Republican platforms. It’s only recently since the GOP leadership surrendered to the wingnuts of their party and have let them dictate the party’s message, that is offensive to most Latinos, has the relationship been strained between Latinos and the GOP.

If the Hispanic Republican Club of McLennan County can start to change that perception, what party leader in their right mind wouldn’t encourage that?

Unfortunately, the Hispanic Republicans are caught in the middle of another feud entirely.

Taylor acknowledged that the conflict between the local GOP and the Hispanic Republican club has a personal element.

“The driving force behind this organization is Janet Jackson,” Taylor said. “She’s been a pain in our backside for many years, and she continues to be. We’ve found we cannot work with her and have refused to try.”

That Jackson is helping the Hispanic Republicans outreach to communities that Taylor and his group have ignored or dismissed isn’t just a pain in Taylor’s backside but a major challenge to his Texas male ego.

And just so he can put Jackson in her place, Taylor is going to discredit the Hispanic Republican group? It appears that to him, Latino voters are expendable for the sake of establishing territorial control.

But this is a new day in Texas GOP politics, and if anything, the HRCMC has signaled that the time for change has come and, finally, on Latino terms.

Machado, of the HRCMC, knows what he wants to do to outreach to potential Latino crossovers, and again, Taylor shows ignorance not just about his Latino neighbors but how people even communicate these days.

Meanwhile, Taylor and Machado disagreed on the importance of a new Web site that Machado has touted as a way to get people involved in Republican politics.

“He wants to start this Web site thing and have Hispanics subscribe to it, and that whole approach puzzles me,” Taylor said. “What’s this going to do to build the party?”

If ever there was an argument for term limits for local party leadership, this is it.

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  • cookie
    December 8, 2009 at 8:05 am

    Just as I suspected. This Hispanic group is pro-amnesty and their views on illegal immigration are behind this. That and that alone is why they are claiming that the Republican party has been taken over by right wing nuts when in fact the Republican party has always held a pro-laws view on illegal immmigration. So what they seek is for the Republican party to change their principles for their ethnic group.
    I found out the truth by snooping around the internet. Amazing what you can find out when the entire truth isn’t told.

  • Duke
    December 8, 2009 at 10:25 am

    Cookie…I would like to assure you that we are not Pro-Amnesty. The issue at hand, is that we are simply doing what needs to be done by the Republican Party…reaching out to Hispanics and those in minority regions of McLennan County. We are Republicans who will not just sit around and assume that everything is being taken care of. We are curious about what is being done…and what is not being done. So, after assessing the situation, we decided become active and become part of the process. This story has received an amazing amount of press…but the truth is…we just want to provide a positive environment for Republicans to unite to defeat our incumbant Congressman, Chet Edwards. That is our motive…nothing else.

  • Evelyn
    December 8, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    cookie :
    Just as I suspected. This Hispanic group is pro-amnesty and their views on illegal immigration are behind this. That and that alone is why they are claiming that the Republican party has been taken over by right wing nuts when in fact the Republican party has always held a pro-laws view on illegal immmigration.
    Then I guess neither Reagen, (who granted amnisty to thousands of illegal aliens) or Bush who (wanted CIR to be made law, which included a path to citizenship for illegal aliens) is considered to be a Republican by you.
    Both of these Republicans held a pro-laws view on illegal immigration.
    What the right wing nuts of today hold is the hand of racism.
    Neither Bush or Reagen used lies to demonize immigrants and Hispanics in general like the racist Republicans do now.

  • cookie
    December 9, 2009 at 8:33 am

    What racist views? Just because they don’t want yet another failed amnesty of which Reagen found out didn’t work or because most Republicans didn’t like McCain’s amnesty plan, that makes them racists? You are using those two men in the party to claim that the whole party shared their views? Well they didn’t and most in the party have always been pro-laws and didn’t share their views. That hasn’t changed. It has always been that way.
    Illegals are of all races so it isn’t about race and just because the majority of illegals are Mexicans still doesn’t make it about racism.
    I don’t know of any Republicans who have spouted lies about the illegals either. It is the truth being brought into the light that bothers you. You would rather the public didn’t know the stats and therefore shut them up and call them racists instead. By the way, all Democrats do not want the kind of CIR that your side does either. So why are you making it a Republican issue?

  • cookie
    December 9, 2009 at 8:41 am

    It is nothing but a big fat lie to claim that anyone in the Republican party demonizes “immigrants” and Hispanics in general. How can anyone lie like that with a straight face? It isn’t “immigrants” we are talking about but those in our country illegally. If a legal Hispanic aids and abets them of course there is an objection to that but if they respect our laws and put this nation first rather than their own ethnic group here illegally then why would anyone talk bad about them?
    Duke, are you claiming that your group doesn’t want legalization and a path to ciitzenship for illegal aliens?
    Just what is it that you think the Republican party isn’t doing for your group then?

  • cookie
    December 9, 2009 at 9:53 am

    A bit off topic but this has to do with the views of far too many Hispanics especially those from Mexico. I know that Evelyn the “wanna be” Hispanic will see herself in this nonsense.
    The natives indigenous to this continent did not see themselves as owners of the entire continent even back then. If they had they wouldn’t have been warring with each other over what they deemed to be their own individual territories. The Aztecs and Mayans who were indigenous to only points south of our country could not have come north and waltzed right into Comanche and Apache territory for examaple as those tribes would have viewed them as trespassers. So even back then the individual tribes did not see themselves as indigenous to an entire continent with the priviledge of going anywhere they pleased on the continent. The Mexicans of today are of the Aztec and Mayan tribes and were not indigenous to this part of the continent now known as the USA. So no, their descendants do not have the right to come here claiming some indigenous right to the entire continent. The tribes indigenous to the USA would certainly have something to say about that even today.
    Another thing with that flawed logic is that would mean that the Irish that were indigenous to the Eurpean continent would have the right to waltz right into Italy today and take up residence without permission from the Italian government. They don’t! If we are going to play the indigenous game then it has to be played over every continent, doesn’t it?
    Some need to wake up to the present and realize that lands have been fought over and exchanged hands throughout history. Every continent has individual countries now with the right to control their own borders. The past is the past and no one in the present nor in the past had the right to an entire continent.

  • Evelyn
    December 11, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Truth evades most of your rebuttals and you dont let facts get in your way either Cookie.
    That is why I wont keep repeating the facts about Reagen and Bush that set you off to babble and lie about me and so many other topics.

  • Believer
    December 14, 2009 at 1:26 am

    I am naturally conservative. I have strong family values and I am faithfully Christian. Yet, I do not feel comfortable in Republican circles. I’ve tried to attend Republican primaries, but when I look around, there is no one that I feel connected to, and I feel that no one wants to connect with me. I think I represent many Latinos that feel the same way. They would like to be Republican, but the current party doesn’t make them feel welcome. If the Republican Party wants to survive in this country, it better learn how to be more inclusive, or go the way of the do-do bird.

  • wideawake
    January 8, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    The GOP = Republican is the Grand Ole Party and this is why African-Americans cannot and will not embrace such an establishment. They do not tolerate free thinking or embrace diversity.
    African-Americans were once Republicans until Nixon and the Southern Strategy–look it up.

  • cookie
    January 8, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    Really, Evelyn? You do relate to Latinos south of our border and you aren’t even Latino. So where are the lies about you? The tribes south of our border were not a part of the tribes north of our border and no one has the right to a whole continent as you have suggested all over the place. You constantly accuse every white person of racism and being here illegally and it matters not to you that many of our ancestors never had conflicts with the native indians but came here less than 100 years ago. It matters not to you though all they need is white skin to gain your hatred.
    You’re part Irish so YOU should talk! As for what happened to the ancestoral tribes south of our border perhaps you should take that up with the Spanish. You know, the Mestizos’s ancestors, not ours!

  • cookie
    January 9, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    wideawake, “free thinking”? Just what is free thinking? Ignoring our laws? How soon you forget how many Black Republicans there are in office in that party.
    How soon you forget that Bush made a Hispanic our Attorney General. Condoliza Rice is a Republican just for starters. You don’t know what you are talking about.

  • Garcia
    January 18, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    Makes sense more mestizos crying for this and that. Look not all of us support illegals not all of us support what you do, but there is the deal older hispanics are democrats just like the old immigrants that came they were all democrats but the kids change views. Were not black people we work hard we dont want handouts

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