Archive for hispanic voters

Another CA city sues over voting rights law

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voter suppression voting rights

Voting rights, schmoting rights. Who needs 'em in this post-racial day and age? We've clearly evolved, says the Supreme Court. Says Republicans. Says anyone who doesn't want Democrats to have voting rights. After all, if you can't win on the merits of your arguments, on your policies (or lack thereof), your talent, or on your powers of persuasion, then hey, cheat.

It's the 'Murican way!

the american way

Unless, of course, you get called out. The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the city of Bellflower, right here in my home state of California, is getting sued. Why? Voting rights are being violated... allegedly:

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and two law firms filed a Superior Court complaint Monday afternoon, on behalf of three minority Bellflower residents alleging the city is in violation of the California Voting Rights Act.

The act seeks to ensure that minorities have an opportunity to elect leaders of their choice.  The suit alleges that Bellflower's practice of electing council members citywide instead of by geographic districts has hindered Latino and African American candidates.

The plaintiffs said they have found patterns of racially polarized voting in the southeast Los Angeles County city of about 77,000. They want the city to switch to by-district elections to give voters in strongly minority neighborhoods an opportunity to elect at least one representative to the City Council.

What? Restricting the rights of not-white voters? In this day and age of GOP outreach? Don't be ridiculous...

It's not like Bellflower's population is 66% Latino and African American, but the council members are monochromatically pale. Come on.

Bellflower's population is 52% Latino and 14% African American, according to the city's website.  All five council members are white.

Oh.

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Twofer: Hispanics aren't casting ballots; the political "news" media is MIA

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hispanics vote logo

I read the New York Times headlines every morning on my trusty New York Times app. When my barely-open eyes are able to focus, I link over to read the ones that grab me. Two very important headlines did just that, one about Hispanics, and one about the national "news" media:

Let's take them one at a time, starting with local journalists leaving beltway reporters in the dust with their mouths hanging open and their eyes popping out:

help!

All politics is local, which may explain why The Richmond Times-Dispatch and The Chesterfield Observer both took David Brat’s Tea Party challenge to Mr. Cantor seriously [...] Congressional races are a mess to cover because there are so many of them... The math of covering someone who may become one of only 100 senators is far easier. [...]

No one wants to stray from the white-hot center of power for fear of being stuck in some forsaken locale when something big happens in Washington — which is why it has become one of the most overcovered places on earth.

That Beltway provincialism is now multiplied by the diminution of nonnational newspapers. The industry as a whole is about half as big as it was in 2007, with regional newspapers suffering acute cutbacks. [...] Plenty of reporters are imprisoned in cubes in Washington, but stretched news organizations aren’t eager to spend money on planes, rental cars and hotel rooms so that employees can bring back reports from the hustings. While the Internet has been a boon to modern reporting ... it tends to pin journalists at their desks.[...]

The quants took a beating on this one, partly because journalists are left to read the same partisan surveys and spotty local reporting as Mr. Cantor’s campaign staff, whose own polling had him up by more than 30 points.

That made MY eyes pop out. Well, actually, it didn't. It did, however, reinforce what I already knew about news coverage, and that's pretty frustrating. So what it really did is made me do this:

banghead gif

On to Hispanics, another frustrating report, because it examines why they don't make it to the polls, what's preventing them, and how change is inevitable. Fortunately, this piece has a happier ending:

One reason is that no demographic group is more marginalized in American elections than Hispanics. Many are ineligible to vote, while those who can vote often do not or are concentrated in noncompetitive districts and states. [...]

The explanation for the gap starts with the most basic rules of voter eligibility. [...] Eligible Hispanics are also less likely to vote than other Americans. A big part of the reason is demographic: Hispanics are younger than other Americans, and voters of all racial and ethnic backgrounds become significantly more likely to vote as they age. [...]

The power of Hispanic voters is further diluted by geography... Finally, Hispanic voters are concentrated in noncompetitive states and districts, diminishing their role in the most important races.[...]

Hispanics are earning more clout in presidential elections. It is in those elections, not in the fight for Congress, where Hispanics could ultimately force the hand of Republicans.[...] In time, the political underrepresentation of Hispanics will end. The Hispanic share of the electorate will steadily increase... But for now, Hispanic voters will struggle to get their voices heard.

Please link over and read the parts I left out. These are two very important articles that answer a few questions, pose a few more, and explain why so many of our heads are exploding on a daily basis.

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GW Bush "will go down in history as the last Republican president in American history." (VIDEO)

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gw bush last republican standing

The B Word has come up a lot lately, specifically Jeb Bush and GW Bush. For example, writing these two posts alone was enough to make my stomach turn: "George W Bush ruined the family name." No worries, W, Jeb's up to the task, too and "Jeb Bush": If it weren't for Karl Rove, SCOTUS, we wouldn't have HAD a torturer-in-chief!

Now GW Bush's name has been uttered for an entirely different reason by Congressman Luis Gutierrez in the video above:

May 20, 2014 - Rep. Luis V. Gutiérrez warned Republicans that President George W. Bush may be the last Republican elected President if they do not act on immigration reform. The Congressman reminded his colleagues that 65,000 Latino citizens turn 18 every month. There are only 18 working days left before July 4th for the House Republicans to pass immigration.

Connect with Rep. Gutiérrez:

http://www.facebook.com/RepGutierrez
http://www.twitter.com/RepGutierrez

I kind of like the sound of that. Let's hear it again:

"I give you George W. Bush: The man who will go down in history as the last Republican president in American history."

And again: Per Rep. Gutierrez, voters would never elect another Republican president if the GOP blocks immigration reform. I could put that on an audio loop and happily play it over and over.

However, I'd rather that Congress pass meaningful immigration reform, that families were reunited or were able to stay together, that DREAMers could get a good education, good jobs, contribute to society, and participate in our democracy, that discrimination, bigotry, and racism fade away, and that the melting pot that is the USA remain intact.

But that little "permanent rejection" bonus that would come on the heels of the GOP continuing to hypocritically push their "outreach" messaging as they obstruct progress? That would be nice, too.

H/t: The Hill

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Not news: Republicans could slide even further with women, Latinos

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gop disaster zone republicans

Women and Latinos do not trust Republicans. Oops, sorry, Captain Obvious got hold of my keyboard again. But he's right, which is also obvious:

obvious

And those are only two of the most recent headlines. The GOP's history of misogyny and racism is appalling, and their efforts to deny their fellow human beings equal rights is disgusting.

Republicans have sworntogod that they want to broaden their appeal. Oh really? Well, if their relentless assault on women's reproductive rights, gay rights, voting rights, and their treatment of undocumented (and documented!) immigrants (or anyone else, for that matter) who don't look or sound like them is the barometer, then they're in deep trouble.

They're still saying exactly the same old thing about the same old things. Reed Galen, a GOP strategist in Orange County who also worked for Bush said, "If we want that number to grow, we have to find ways to talk to Latinos about the issues we all care about." How many Republicans have made identical comments? And how many have actually followed through, or even done the opposite? Exactly.

Remember their post-2012 election "autopsy"? That reinvention they keep promising... not so much. How's that reachy-outy, makeovery thing workin' for ya, GOP?

The Los Angeles Times takes it from here:

Donnelly, the GOP front-runner according to public opinion polls, has stood by his 2006 speech, delivered when he was leader in the volunteer Minuteman border-patrol organization. In it, he said illegal immigration would lead to a fight comparable to the Civil War. [...]

"I am not backing away from the fact that we are in a war," Donnelly told reporters in Sacramento on Tuesday, after reports of the speech caused an outcry. He said he did not believe the remarks would hurt his prospects among Latino voters.

See how they've changed?

The Pelosi flap on the new Breitbart CA website prompted House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield to ask that his column be taken off the site.

Republican strategists said that while the imagery was "problematic," they viewed it as less significant than the immigration issue.

So the problems with their antiquated policies, views, and (mis)treatment of women are "less significant." Not right up there on their To Do list. Got it.

Keep up the good work, guys. If it weren't for dirty tricks and gerrymandering, they wouldn't stand a chance in 2014. And don't even get me started on the Supreme Court ruling that favors billionaires...

UPDATE: New Rule Prohibits Voters In Miami-Dade County From Using The Restroom, No Matter How Long The Line. 'Nuff said.

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VIDEO: The most important election you haven't heard of

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voter suppression doj can't tell us what to do

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Chris Hayes:

In August, [the mayor of Pasadena, Texas] started pushing a plan to shrink the number of districts from eight to six, and replace those two with at large seats to be voted on by everyone in Pasadena.

And by everyone, we mean the town's white voting majority.

One of two Hispanics on the council, Cody Ray Wheeler.:

He decided to make a full power grab and he didn't care who you'd have to step over to get it.

Hayes:

To the community, the goal of the plan was clear: Dilute the power of the Hispanic vote and hand two seats to the majority white voting population, ensuring the citywide majority white voting population could band together and retain their power.

Wheeler:

What this effectively does is give the south part of town, the Anglo part of town, the majority of the council.

Hayes:

It turns out this is precisely the sort of thing Section Five of the Voting Rights Act was designed to block. In fact, Ruth Bader Ginsburg cited this precise type of discrimination from a pre-Section Five world when the Voting Rights Act came before the court earlier this year.

Justice Ginsburg:

These second generation barriers including racial gerrymandering, switching from district voting to at-large voting...

Hayes:

Did you hear that? At-large voting. It's the oldest trick in the book and it's so immediately recognizable that when a neighboring Texas town of Beaumont cooked up a similar at-large plan, it was blocked by the Justice Department in December 2012.

But then, the Supreme Court killed Section Five of the Voting Rights Act...

Now that Section Five is dead, there are thousands of potential Pasadenas all across the South.

voting rights ginsburg comment

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"Last time I looked Bill Clinton wasn't passing bill after bill requiring women to have implements shoved up their vaginas"

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stay classy

This is how CongressClown Tim Huelskamp shows his respect for the office of the presidency:

tweet huelskamp clinton immigration reform obama

This is how a pal of mine responded to an elected official like Huelskamp who has no business holding office or representing anyone with a functioning brain (who the hell voted for this vile excuse for a human being?):

tweet huelskamp clinton immigration reform obama tiedrich reply

It's one thing for Republicans to repeatedly put their tone deafness on display by doing everything they can to undermine meaningful immigration reform, thus completely contradicting their self-proclaimed "makeover."

It's quite another to express opposition by scraping the bottom of the deepest barrel one can imagine by spewing disgraceful messages about the president(s) of the United States.

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Texas is blue-ming

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BLUEm bloom

Previously I posted a quickie that's worth a read: Three things that Texas needs to become a blue state (betcha Rick Perry can only name 2 of them). Here's the sequel.

Dear Democrats,

One word of advice: Persistence.

Love,

Laffy

Via the Los Angeles Times:

But after a generation's worth of Democratic failure, many are convinced the state is on the cusp of competitiveness, thanks to the rapid growth of Texas' minority population, especially Latinos, and a slow rebuilding of the party from the ground level — city, county, legislative offices — up.

"It's inevitable," said Matt Angle, a Democratic consultant [...]

Among those drawn by the prospect are some of the data-driven strategists of President Obama's campaigns, whose targeting and mobilization boosted black and Latino turnout and twice helped win such battlegrounds as Ohio, Virginia, Colorado and Nevada. They have dispatched field teams throughout the state, hoping to apply their organizing techniques to Texas, where millions of eligible minority voters have either failed to register or haven't bothered voting.

Three other words of advice: Turnout, turnout, turnout.

Bluing up Texas will take years, of course, but it didn't hurt to have the wonderful State Senator Wendy Davis filibuster the GOP's egregious proposals intruding upon women's privacy, bodies, and reproductive rights. She was the right kind of person who brought the right kind of attention to the wrong kind of legislation.

The Asian American population, though much smaller than that for whites or Latinos, is growing even faster.

If these citizens, many of them new voters, are registered and cast ballotstwo big ifs — Democrats are convinced they will transform Texas politics.

Of course, Republican-run states have made it tougher to register and cast ballots. Want to vote? Democrats need not apply.

Steve Munisteri, the Democratic party's state chairman, said, "No one's going to vote for you if they think you don't like them, even if they agree with you." And the GOP has made it crystal clear that they don't like people who don't look, sound, and think exactly as they do. Or who have vaginas.

Unfortunately, Democrats don't have anyone exciting "on the bench," meaning, few, if any, viable statewide candidates. We hear a lot about San Antonio's mayor Julian Castro and his twin brother, Joaquin, a congress member who pops up on the Tee Vee Machine a lot these days. However, neither seem interested in running for higher office, per the Times.

And then there's Wendy Davis, who hasn't ruled out a run for governor. She also hasn't ruled out the extreme difficulty of such an undertaking.

As I've written over and over again, and as the Times confirms, building Democratic strength by getting candidates into office from the bottom up (school boards, city councils, etc.) is the way to go. Meanwhile, Texas is and will turn bluer. But it won't happen quickly or easily.

Persistence.

Turnout.

Please.

chart texas blue gop v dem

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