Archive for the ‘California Politics’ Category

Rand Paul Serves Thin Gruel to GOP Convention

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

imageCalifornia Republicans hoping to be fired up and inspired by U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, the keynote speaker at Saturday’s GOP convention, instead were given a limp, meandering ramble, in which the prospective presidential candidate took recycled shots at President Obama and Hillary Clinton, while largely avoiding anything of substance.

It was weak sauce.

Paul, whose libertarian friends are angry about his increasing willingness to use U.S. force in the Middle East; who has enraged conservatives by falsely linking Sen. John McCain to ISIS members, and who allied himself with pacifist Democratic liberals by voting against Obama’s plan to attack ISIS, said little about foreign affairs. Except to attack Clinton — the most likely Democratic nominee for president — for allegedly spending State Department money frivolously instead of beefing up U.S. facilities in Benghazi before the mission there was attacked.

In what is a certain refrain if he and she both seek the presidency, Paul said of Clinton: “If you can’t defend our embassies and you won’t send the assets there, you preclude yourself from being considered for Commander in Chief.”

He charged that Clinton failed to read critical cables requesting support. “I think she had a 3 a.m. moment. She didn’t answer the phone. And I think it absolutely should preclude her from being considered,” he said to applause.

Picking Winners and Losers Calbuzz had hoped to hear his views on foreign policy, along with key social issues for California voters: a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, a woman’s right to choose, gay marriage and universal health care. But while Paul made private interview time available to the loathsome Breitbart News and Fox, along with MSM must-dos like the Los Angeles Times and San Francisco Chronicle, he and his callow staff stiffed Calbuzz and, more mysteriously, the Sacramento Bee – and why not? why would a Republican want to reach voters that covers California’s red-tinged Central Valley?

Paul paid lip service to building a “bigger, better, bolder party” (wasn’t that an old marketing slogan for Tide?) and “reaching out” beyond the GOP’s reliable base of white men and Southerners. But amid his insistence that the Republicans not change their fundamental message, the only such “reaching out” example he could muster was a brief reference to “let’s expand voter rights,” which received a tepid response from the 373 partisans munching on seared breast of oregano chicken, herb roasted potatoes, chopped salad and berry tart. Now there’s something to reach out for

Imaginary Friends Republicans are excited to the point of delusion about Paul’s appeal to younger voters because his civil libertarian defense of privacy rights in the face of the intelligence establishment’s Big Brotherism has some genuine appeal.”What you say on your cell phone is none of the government’s damn business,” he said at one point, pulling his phone from his pocket.

But when contrasted to his opposition to abortion and gay marriage, it’s a stretch to see how Paul can appeal broadly to younger voters, even if his laconic raspy Southern voice recalls a bit of Bill Clinton.

Calbuzz found it just a bit mind-bending that after a briefing with California Sen. Bob Huff, R-Diamond Bar, in which Huff said “We’re not a lock-step, right-wing, knee-jerk organization” (ouch!) Paul’s introduction was preceded by high-production value campaign video that, among other things, featured props from, among others, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity.


GOP Confab: Can Paul, McCarthy Hide True Beliefs?

Friday, September 19th, 2014

paulmccarthyThe headliners for the California Republican Party convention in Los Angeles this weekend –  newly re-branded U.S. Sen. Rand Paul,  R-KY, and U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield – fit the profile of modern Golden State Republicans that Chairman Jim Brulte would like to popularize: well-spoken GOP celebrities who don’t sound like fire-breathing evangelists.

But when their actual records are examined, Paul and McCarthy are wholly in tune with Tea Party terrorized Republican orthodoxy –and some of the most whackjob extremists — on the most divisive issues for California voters: immigration, abortion, gay marriage and health care. (Not to mention climate change or the minimum wage.)

When it comes to projecting an image that doesn’t frighten moderate and independent voters, Paul and McCarthy are top-notch picks. But – whisper aside – they’re both opposed to a pathway to citizenship and a woman’s right to choose, against gay marriage and would – even now — repeal Obamacare.

yodaWisdom of Yoda Rhetoric does not supplant action; good words are no substitute for good deeds. As Calbuzzer Yoda explained to young Luke Skywalker: “Try not. Do or not do. There is no try.”

Paul, in particular, as a potential 2016 candidate for president, has sought to soften his image on a variety of issues, especially immigration. He claims to have sympathy for undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children, has said he favors giving work permits to all of the country’s illegal immigrants and he says he’s for immigration reform.

“I’m actually a moderate on immigration,” he said in one interview.

But not really. He voted against the comprehensive bill that was passed by the Senate last year, he previously opposed the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program, which allowed up to 500,000 undocumented minors to be exempted from deportation.  And he sharply criticized Texas Gov. Rick Perry for embracing in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. His “sympathy” for “the DREAM Act kids” only goes so far.

“I’m very open to discussing that I think there should be some kind of immigration reform, but I don’t think you can do it without first securing the border, and that’s the problem with the president doing this unlawfully,” Paul has said. And he’s left no doubt that he’s opposed to giving “amnesty” to undocumented immigrants.

dodgeballHow they dodge Paul and others have made two critical sidesteps in hopes of finessing the immigration issue:

1) They no longer talk about a pathway to citizenship but discuss a pathway to legalization, meaning undocumented immigrants already here might be able to get some form of residence status short of citizenship (and the right to vote);

2) They’re all for comprehensive reform but only after the “borders have been secured” – whatever that means and however that would be measured. Which it can’t, which is why it’s a phony form of support for immigration reform.

In other words, Sen. Paul talks a good game on immigration – hoping to sound less threatening to Latino voters – but in the end, he’s an impassable boulder on the pathway  to citizenship.

The 100% compromise: The other keynote speaker, Kevin McCarthy, likewise says he supports some form of legalization of undocumented immigrants, but he opposes a pathway to citizenship and, as Majority Leader of the House – the No. 2 leadership position – he has failed to bring immigration reform to the floor for a vote.

He, too, uses border security as a way to dodge pushing for reform. As he said in an interview with Fox News:

I’m on record saying nothing about immigration, until we secure the borders. The borders are not secure. Look at the humanitarian crisis that is happening right now along the border states. These are children coming from three major countries in Central America. They’re going across. Kids are dying. Who knows what’s happening when it comes to human trafficking and others, it’s because our borders are not secure. Until you secure the borders, you cannot have the conversation about anything else.

When Chris Wallace asked, “That must come first?” McCarthy replied, “That must come first.”

That’s not reasonable compromise, As MSNBC’s Rachael Maddow put it, McCarthy’s approach is that “Republicans should get 100% of what they want, he says, while Democrats get 0% of what they want. Once the GOP is satisfied with having everything, Republicans will then consider related policies.”

goptalibanBowing to GOP Taliban Paul and McCarthy may be in tune with the jihadist Republicans who attend GOP conventions, but they are sharply out of touch with California voters at large. As the Field Poll reported last February:

There is now nearly universal support among California voters to allow undocumented immigrants who have lived here for a number of years to stay and become citizens if they have a job, learn English, and pay back taxes. Statewide, 90% of voters now favor this policy.

Just last week, the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll reported that 72% of likely voters in California – including 72% of Republicans! – agreed with a plan including a provision that would boost border security and “allow illegal immigrants already in the United States with no serious criminal record to apply for legal status, learn English, pay taxes and a penalty and then go to the back of the line to work toward citizenship.”

Paul and McCarthy are not even in synch with the majority view throughout the country where a recent poll by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Brookings Institution, nonpartisan research groups in Washington, found 62% of Americans in favor of a path to citizenship for immigrants living in the United States illegally.

But they sound reasonable when talking about the issue. And that’s the image Brulte is hoping to project as he tries to rebuild the California GOP.

Likewise on abortion, Paul and McCarthy like to sound reasonable, but they’re not.

Paul, for example, says he wouldn’t try to overturn Roe v Wade but in Congress he introduced the Life at Conception Act, which would grant legal personhood rights to zygotes from the moment of fertilization. The bill would ban abortion entirely and could affect the legality of some forms of birth control and in-vitro fertilization.

McCarthy is  in lockstep with National Right to Life on the issues surrounding abortion and favored cutting off funds to Planned Parenthood.

threecardmonteWhat you cannot fake Immigration and abortion are not just important wedge issues – they’re threshold issues that have a dramatic effect on Latino and women voters in particular. While few Latinos or women argue that immigration or choice on abortion are the No. 1 issue facing the nation, huge proportions of these voters don’t even want to hear a candidate’s stand on other, more important issues, if he or she (or a party) is on the “wrong” side of these  threshold issues.

Gay marriage and Obamacare are other high-profile issues on which both Paul and McCarthy may appeal to the Republican shock troops who attend GOP conventions, but not the broad mass of California or even U.S. voters.

“It’s the dilemma of appealing to the base versus winning elections,” says lobbyist Bob Naylor, the very smart former Assembly leader and state GOP chairman. “To the extent that those issues are defining issues, I don’t think you can finesse it.”

We can’t wait to see how far the headliners are willing to go on any of these issues when they speak to delegates on Saturday. The smart money says that Paul, at least, will be keeping the national impact of his words in mind, even if it means sounding a bit “moderate” to the red meat crowd of conventioneers.

P.S. Our National Desk and Political Swag Collection Department will travel to the fabulous L.A. Airport Marriott Hotel for the convention to provide the Special Brand of Journalism you’ve come to expect from Calbuzz.

Neel Strong in Debate; Brown’s Record Stronger

Thursday, September 4th, 2014


Top line on Thursday night’s debate between Neel Kashkari and Gov. Jerry Brown: Neel put in a strong and substantive showing. But it won’t matter because Brown makes an inarguable case that California was in the toilet when he took over and since then he’s put the budget in the black, added 4 1.4 million jobs, implemented Obamacare, got a deal on water and achieved relative harmony in Sacramento. Higher education, immigration and climate change have all been addressed in some form. Which is why six in 10 voters approve of his job performance.

Neel, despite looking something like Mr. Spock, proved he belonged on the same stage, was not intimidated and showed familiarity, if not mastery, of key issues. His fundamental problem is that the premise of his campaign does not reflect reality. Voters don’t believe, and they sure don’t want to hear, the negative case he’s making. Voters want to hear positive stuff — paging Ronald Reagan! — as long as it doesn’t conflict too sharply with their own lives.

Neel’s other problem: he’s up against Republican orthodoxy on climate change, gay marriage and Obamacare, slicing into his Republican base, apparently in hopes of attracting independents. It won’t work: in California, you scratch an “independent” and usually you get a Democratic voter. That’s certainly the case with Brown: he leads Kashkari 42-24% among voters with no party preference.

We don’t fault Neel his effort: he’s basically a Calbuzz Republican (if he’d stop with the “crazy train”). Hopefully, he can be among those who lead the California GOP out of the wilderness.

Props to the CalChannel producers for limiting the number of reporters to two, both of whom asked excellent questions: HT John Myers, Dunia Elvir and Jim Newton. It was one of the better debates we’ve seen in recent years and we agree with Jerry — one is enough.

Here’s our live blog entries, from last to first.

7:55 – Brown closes with “we’ve got momentum and we’re moving in the right direction.” Neel closes with “rebuilding the middle class for you” and accuses Brown of “incrementalism.” Whatever that is. Neel says he’ll do “big things.” Whatever that means….Meanwhile Seattle leads Packers 29-10.

7:54 – H/t to Cathy Decker for noting that Kashkari keeps using the awful word “incentivize.” Yuk.

7:52 – Neel faults Brown’s UC policy for going after foreign students who have to pay higher tuition at the expense of “California kids.” Brown notes he froze tuition for UC and CSU for three years.

7:49 – Spoiler alert: Brown discloses that he will sign bill outlawing plastic bags. Kashkari says no way would he sign it; hits governor and Legislature for focusing on little things – like legislation allowing dogs in restaurants – instead of bigger vision “rebuilding the middle class.”

7:46 – California is recovering faster than the rest of the country, Brown says. Hits Neel on Goldman Sachs (not some poor immigrant grocery store bagger). Brown making the case for a positive view of California.

7:44 – Neel dodges Myers question of whether he would have signed the bill letting illegals getting a driver’s license after Jerry strongly defends. Kashkari says we need federal not state legislation – Myers doesn’t follow up.

7:41 – Now Neel says he won’t try to end Obamacare – “I want to fix it.” Is this guy really a Republican? Brown getting more and more feisty: “There are so many glib statements out there I don’t know where to start.” Then he goes all populist on Neel, calling him a “salesman” who “learned your job well at Goldman Sachs” which “wrecked Wall Street.” Says Kashkari is “an arsonist putting out the fire.”

7:40 - Here’s Kashkari’s problem: He’s got to make the case that California’s going to hell in a hand basket but 58% of voters approve of Jerry Brown’s performance as governor.

7:37 – Jerry schooling on pension reform. The guy really is a wonder – 76 years old and fighting like he’s 40.

7:35 – Right-wingers will really be growling at Neel now: he not only explains his support of gay marriage, but also defends Brown’s action as AG not supporting Prop. 8 backers’ appeal of Court of Appeals decision tossing it. Reps are only 28% of voters, and he’s alienating at least half of them.

7:32 – Jerry says the crazy train will be built cause it’s cheaper than the alternatives and Neel’s “more familiar with the gravy train back in DC” because of TARP.

7:30 – It’s a tough thing to say, but there’s no way around it: Kashkari looks like Mr. Spock. There we said it. Talk about an eyebrow problem. Calbuzz may have to change his nickname from “Tyrion” to “Spock.”

7:26 – Good question by Dunia Elvir of Telemundo on realignment: a success or just moving the problem to locals? Weak Jerry response: “anything in government takes time.” Looks like pace is getting to him as he suddenly takes a big gulp from a a black mug, presumably water, then signals someone offstage for more. His face is red – is our projection #2 in today’s preview coming true?

7:24 - Neel defends his role in managing the Troubled Asset Recovery Program. Brown trumps by bringing up $32 billion given in bonuses to Wall Street.

7:22 – Kash attacks on teacher tenure, says Brown sided with forces of evil against children. Not true says Brown. Great exchange – Neel says Brown “should be ashamed” while Gandalf says that’s just “so wrong.” Good question by Jim Newton from L.A. Times; very fast paced debate, good exchanges, Myers doing a nice job of keeping to time limits.

7:20 – “We can’t simply solve all the worlds problems with an open border,” Neel says. He’s for compassion but also sending kids home. Brown’s for a fair hearing, whatever that is.

7:19 – GOP wing nuts won’t like hearing Neel say he “believe(s) in the science of climate change” but won’t support AB32 implementation because of high gas prices.

7:15 – Jerry filibusters to avoid talking about gas prices — they go up and they go down — just like he paddles on the left and right. Climate change, BTW, is “an existential threat.”

7:14 – Neel looks very good on Tesla, attacking Brown’s performance on the issue as “only one of many examples of failure” in the administration. Very articulate, tough and clear. Round to Kashkari.

7:12 – Asked if he would give special tax breaks for Tesla, Neel doesn’t answer directly. Says Brown hasn’t done enough. Says Tesla wanted massive subsidy that wouldn’t benefit California. CA is leader in alt energy and electric cars.

7:08 – Brown calls out Kashkari for ducking Myers question about Field Poll. Tells  Neel he doesn’t “have much chance to win” because he as governor has done a terrific job. Then he demonstrates his mastery of water politics while pitching for his water bond; “I don’t think this man understands” water policy.

7:07 – Neel says water and schools have to come before high-speed rail.

7:05 Neel thanks TV audience for watching the debate instead of the NFL game. Charges Brown is “out of touch…with middle class” and claims he will “rebuild middle class.” Good makeup on his chrome dome – no shine from studio lights.

7:04 – Jerry opens by reminding people that California was a mess when he took over and now it’s on the road to recovery with a balanced budget. Strong opener.

7:02 – John Myers introducing everyone – love his gold silk pocket handkerchief; Brown trimmed his eyebrows; Neel smiling weirdly.

6:58 – BTW, Calbuzz is NOT on site, where we can be spun; we’re in the state-of-the-art politically influential communities of Aptos and Santa Barbara…here we go…

6:52 – Eight minutes to kickoff on the debate, two minutes left before halftime in the other game, where Ha-Ha looks more like Boo-Hoo: torched for a touchdown and brushed off like a fly trying to tackle Marshawn Lynch. Oy

6:34 – Kashkari tells media outside of CalChannel studio that he intends to hold Brown accountable for his record. Sorry, Neel, but we don’t think Jerry will mind this. Field Poll: Brown job performance 58% approve, 36% disapprove. Oops.

6:02 – For the three people who are reading this instead of watching the game (thanks honey!) Seattle was held to a field goal at 6:03 in the first quarter.

5:48 – Whatever Neel and Jerry are doing right now, the Packers have stopped the Seahawks on their first drive but then roughed the punter. So Seattle has the ball back deep inside Packer territory. Dammit. Also, there’s a Packer named Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix. Really.

5:24 pm – Glad to hear 41-year-old Neel Kashkari’s back problems — which almost derailed his only shot at a debate — disappeared before he sits down with 76-year-old Gov. Jerry Brown, whose back apparently is just fine. Sheesh.


Can Neel Beat the Spread? Plus New Poll Numbers

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

gandalfandtyrionFacing California’s most prosaic election in memory, our Department of Spectator Sport Politics and Insensate Choices is girding its loins (ow!) for the fall campaign by reviewing the words of the late Senator Gene (Not Joe) McCarthy:

“Being in politics is like being a football coach,” Clean Gene famously said. “You have to be smart enough to understand the game and dumb enough to think it’s important.”

McCarthy’s maxim seems an appropriate invocation for tonight’s one and only debate between Gov. Jerry (+16 in the Field Poll) Brown and Republican challenger Neel Kashkari, since this Made for C-SPAN event will go nose-to-nose against NBC’s broadcast of the NFL season opener between the Seahawks (5.5 point favorites) against the Packers.

High roller tip: If you bet the ratings face-off, take the game and give the points. The one-hour debate starts at 7 p.m. in the Sacramento studio of The California Channel. Other sponsors are KQED, the Los Angeles Times and Telemundo52. Tune in here for a live blog and tweet fest.

newmegWhat Neel must do: Let’s be blunt: Tyrion’s chances of upsetting Gandalf in November are dependent upon at least one of three key things happening at the debate:

1-In a fiery exchange, Kashkari confounds Brown into showing his age by peppering him with a series of tough philosophical questions – “Before they invented golf balls, how did they measure hail?” “Why isn’t ‘phonetic’ spelled the way it sounds?” “What’s another word for ‘thesaurus?’” – that send the Jesuit incumbent screaming into the night before announcing his abdication the next morning.

2-In response to a question about the California Water Project from moderator John Myers, Brown takes a sip from his glass, suddenly complains of “pain in my jaw, radiating down my left arm,” then falls to the floor and turns blue. Alternatively, he copiously drools.

3-The event is interrupted by the breaking news that eMeg Whitman has purchased California, in a deal underwritten by Goldman Sachs, and is installing Neel in Sacramento as “Pro Consul and COO.”

woolymammothOf course, it’s also true that the impish Kashkari can win by losing – running a thoughtful, respectable and dignified race and beating the spread at the Calbuzz Casino (see below). In a year when California GOP Chairman Jim Brulte has begun to pull his party out of the La Brea tar pits, and helped put forth some of its most appealing candidates in recent years – Ashley Swearingen and Pete Peterson come to mind – Kashkari can make his bones politically.

As a personal matter, a stronger-than-expected race instantly will establish him as a Player in Republican politics, and leave him well positioned for another run for governor or for the Senate, depending on circumstances. More importantly, Kashkari could provide a major boost for Brulte’s long game effort to rebrand the party in California and make it relevant again.

We don’t agree with everything Tyrion says – as certified geezers, we strongly support railroads, and look askance at his attacks on Brown’s “Crazy Train” – but were impressed in an extensive interview with him by his biography, openness on immigration and rejection of Flashreport dogma. Now all he’s got to do is to keep running as a Calbuzz Republican.

pollingFun with numbers: The latest Field Poll shows Gandalf leading Tyrion 50-34 percent among likely voters. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg that the Good Ship Kashkari is about to encounter.  Brown not only is winning 83% of Democrats and 42% of independents, he’s got 11% of Republicans. Neel, on the other hand, pulls 77% of Republicans, but just 24% of independents and a puny 6% of Democrats.

Worse for Kash & Karry, he beats Brown among conservatives 71-16%, but loses liberals 91-1% and gets stomped among all-important middle-of-the-road voters 55-23%. Brown is leading among men (50-33%) and women (50-35%) and among whites (50-39%), Latinos (49-28%), Asians (40-19%) and blacks (82-9%).

While nearly everyone has an opinion about Gandalf, and their views are 56% favorable to 35% unfavorable, fewer than 6 in 10 likely voters even have an opinion about Tyrion and it’s just 35% favorable and 24% unfavorable. After tonight’s debate, only a few more voters may know who Kashkari is;  more important for him, his favorable rating might improve if he acquits himself nicely.

(Mandatory belaboring: These numbers brought to you by our secret sources since a prominent subscriber to the Field Poll has blackballed Calbuzz from being able to subscribe to the poll directly).

bad-bookieCooking all these stats together, we set the Week One betting line in the governor’s race as Brown -20, Kashkari +20. (About the same as Gray Davis vs. Dan Lungren in ’98)

We’ll be updating the line regularly between now and November, depending on events in the campaign, and in mid-October we’ll announce details of the Calbuzz Election Pool, entry in which will make you eligible for Big Prizes.

BTW P.S. The biggest political event of tonight will not be the gubernatorial debate, but rather the joint appearances in San Francisco of Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Kamala Harris before about 50 $1,000-to-$10,000 donors to the California Democratic Party .

Get ready for Election 2018!

GOP Magical Thinking: Pathway IS Crucial to Latinos

Monday, August 11th, 2014

latinovotersEvery now and then, some misguided conservative stumbles onto a poll finding that immigration is not the No. 1 issue for Latino voters and he cries “Eureka!” as if this were proof that the right wing can continue to oppose immigration reform and still attract this growing bloc of voters to their candidates and causes.

Our old pal Jon Fleischman of FlashReport, has made this blunder, egged on by the glassy-eyed analysis of the Republican pollsters at Moore Information (what role Democratic pollster David Binder played was unclear). Exclaimed Flash breathlessly: “Immigration is only the 6th-most-important issue for Latino voters in California when casting a vote for a candidate for U.S. Senator or for U.S. Congress.”

No shit, Sherlock. As Calbuzz has explained over and over and over again, when asked to list the top issues, Latinos, like everyone else, cite education, the economy and security, depending on conditions at any given time.

But that misses the point entirely. For Latino voters, immigration is what we call a threshold or gateway issue: in a list of issues, it’s never No. 1. But if a candidate is opposed to a pathway to legality or citizenship for undocumented immigrants, Latino voters don’t even want to hear what he or she has to say about education, the economy or security. (eMeg, take note.)

It’s that way with huge numbers of women for choice on abortion: They rarely declare it their No. 1 issue, but candidates who are opposed to choice are, by and large, dead meat among a majority of women voters.

wileecoyotePathway is the Way We’re not going to deconstruct the entire survey that Moore Methods did for Univision, which never asked respondent Latinos if they’d be more or less inclined to vote for a candidate who opposes a pathway to citizenship (or if they did ask, they didn’t release the data).

But a few findings from interviews with 930 registered voters who identified as Latinos are worth mentioning.

For starters, 86% — that’s a BIG number in polling – would “support a law that allowed undocumented immigrants, already in the United States with no serious criminal record, to apply for legal status, learn English, pay outstanding taxes and a penalty and then go to the back of the line and work toward citizenship.”

It was 88% in Los Angeles and Sacramento, 87% in the Central Valley and San Diego, and 80% in the Bay Area.

Even without all the qualifications, 71% of Latino voters answered in the positive when asked: “Generally speaking, do you favor or oppose a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.”

What Fleischman seized on was the response to a loaded question that was kind of like asking respondents if they think child molesters should go to jail or be let go with a warning, to wit:

“Some people say we should require borders to be secured before providing a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants” or, “Other people say we should pass comprehensive immigration reform and a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants without requiring borders to be secured first.”

Despite this obvious attempt to get a number they could spin, the pollsters found only 58% favoring requiring border security first compared to 42% who favored passing comprehensive reform (and apparently doing nothing about securing the borders).

LonelyElephantLonely planet What Fleischman and his cronies still don’t grasp is that there’s a reason why Latino voters have a 60% favorable view of the Democratic Party and a 57% unfavorable view of the Republican Party.

“They mostly care about corporations and big business,” “their own self interests” and “they favor the rich” were offered to respondents as separate reasons for their disfavor; these added up to 48% of the reasons. “They are against immigration reform” was cited by 10% — a very large percentage as a stand-alone rationale for disliking a party.

It’s an exercise in self-denial to continue to hope that Republicans can draw Latino support without fundamentally altering their opposition to a pathway to legality (at least) for undocumented immigrants. Not that we expect the GOP to start listening to our advice, on their own pathway – to utter irrelevance.