Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Anti-gay Latino organization endorses Hillary Clinton for NY Senate

Here's an interesting tid-bit from today's Los Angeles Times: The DC-based Latino Coalition has endorsed Hillary Rodham Clinton in her re-election bid for the New York State Senate. This is news because the group - purportedly a "non-partisan" entity - has pretty much rubber-stamped George W. Bush's agenda since giving him their 2004 endorsement.

For example, back in March they endorsed the building of a wall across the Mexico-U.S. border (or increasing "physical barriers along the border," as they called it); blasted a McCain-Kennedy bill that would have provided a pathway to residency for undocumented workers currently in the United States; and, when immigration reform failed, they promptly blamed Democratic Party for the defeat as well.

Politically they have also endorsed Alberto Gonzalez for Attorney General, Arnold Schwarzeneger for California Governor and conservative judge Miguel Estrada, a Bush appointee to the DC Appellate Court. Some Democrats have also received the Latino Coalition's endorsement in the past but they tend to be centrist Democrats, a couple of exceptions being the other Democratic New York State Senator, Chuck Schumer, and Illinois State Senator Barack Obama, both in 2004.

Earlier this month at the Small Business Economic Summit, which the Coalition organizes in DC every year, they held a discussion on "The Looming Crisis South of the Border: Venezuela and Argentina - The Hemisphere's Troubling New Axis."

At the event they also released the results of a poll on Latino community attitudes towards the political parties. In the intro to the poll results, available online in pdf form, the Coalition explains the "one ray of hope" that remains for Republicans when it comes to Latino voters:
According to the results of the survey, the one ray of hope for Republicans is that Latino voters continue to support a conservative social agenda and a conservative economic policy. By a margin of 61-8% Latino registered voters prefer lowering taxes to grow the economy; by a margin of 48-40% registered voters prefer to be covered by a private health care plan over a government-run program like Medicaid; by a margin of 54-36% Latino voters consider themselves pro-life; 59% said they would be less likely to support a candidate that supports gay marriage and 67% said they would be more likely to support a candidate that support parental notification before a teenage girl can have an abortion.
In the past, the Latino Coalition has joined forces with other anti-gay Latino institutions, such as CONLAMIC, so it's no surprise that they have polled individuals on this issue in order to advance their conservative agenda.

Now, it is known that Hillary Clinton does not support marriage rights for same-sex couples but that alone does not explain the Coalition's endorsement. As a matter of fact, back in August the Coalition blasted Clinton for trying to save millions in funding for some of the urban population worst hit by HIV/AIDS.

The Times article says that the Coalition's endorsement of Clinton is a sign of how the immigration debate has roiled Latino support for Republicans but, considering the Coalition's past support for some of the most restrictive of the recently proposed immigration measures, I'm not so sure that the theory applies. Most probably, it's just one more desperate face-saving attempt by the Coalition now that their fortunes have run afoul of a sinking Republican ship.

As for their Clinton endorsement, EvilPaula over at Daily Kos, pulls up more dirt on The Latino Coalition while noting that neither Clinton nor California Democrat Diane Feinstein list it on their campaign websites.

Who has them listed as endorsers? Those seeking to draw the conservative Latino vote including Republican George Allen in his bid for the Virginia Senate (yes, the Coalition endorsed him despite Allen's widely-reported racist comments during a campaign stop) and "independent" Connecticut Senate candidate Joe Lieberman.

1 comment:

Lito Sandoval said...

Ugh While reading this Inger Lorre's "She's Not Your Friend" egan playing in my head.