Anyone who might be confused about whether President Obama has started his 2012 run for the presidency in earnest – yes, you’re right, the calendar does say it’s still 2011 – need only look at his intensifying campaign of pandering toward Hispanics.
Obama not only has to win the Hispanic vote, he needs to win it pretty big. He received two thirds of it in 2008, helping put him over the top in key battlegrounds like Florida, New Mexico, Colorado and Nevada.
So Obama kicked off his Spring 2011 Hispanic-voter-pleasing campaign with a March trip to Latin America, which he refused to cancel or truncate even though he was busy starting a war with Libya.
He followed up almost immediately with an “Univision Town Hall.” Then on April 7, he hosted the president of Colombia at the White House, and on April 28, the president of Panama.
He made his way on April 29 to Latino-vote-rich Miami, where he delivered a commencement address at the esteemed Miami Dade College, where everybody knows how to dance.
Obama later remarked:
This is a school with more than 170,000 students who come from 181 different countries, speak 94 different languages. The graduates were so excited, they were so proud. They spent a good portion of the ceremony dancing and doing the wave. I mean, you know, there were Cubanos there. There were Haitians. There were — there were Puerto Ricanos. I mean everybody was there. Everybody was there — and everybody could dance.
OK, it’s nice to hear there were 181 flags on parade, but 69 percent of the school is Hispanic. Please understand what’s actually going on here.
A week later it was May 5, and time to open the White House up for the annual Cinco de Mayo festivities.
Obama noted to the assembled guests that he had just launched a new Spanish language White House website for people who can’t be bothered to learn English. And he said the time is right for a National Museum of the American Latino. This of course will be paid for by China, which adds a multicultural hue to the endeavor.
Last Tuesday, May 10, he was in El Paso, Texas pitching for immigration reform. The initiative has no chance of passing Congress, but it does have a good chance of motivating Hispanic voters to get to the polls.
And then Thursday, Obama dropped by the National Hispanic Prayer Breakfast in Washington. There, he asked for everyone to pray for immigration reform, in the hope, I suppose, that God can be convinced to weigh in on legalization.
So I’ll keep doing my part. I’ll keep pushing and working with Congress. But the only way we are going to get this done is by building a widespread movement for reform. That’s why I’m asking you to keep preaching and persuading your congregations and communities. That’s why I’m asking you to keep on activating, getting involved, mobilizing. That’s why we all need to keep praying.
So I’ll do my part, you use your pulpits and do your part, and then God will do his part to intercede with those damn Republicans.
I don’t understand. Why all the pretense. How about just hosting a “White House Celebration of Hispanic Voters?”