Hispanics saved the Senate, Democrats are saying, and with good reason given the improbably re-election of Harry Reid in Nevada, Barbara Boxer's easier-than-expected win in California, and Michael Bennet's hairsbreadth survival in Colorado.
One of the very, very few things Bush 43 had right, back in 2003 or so, was the demographic imperative of increasing the Republican Party's share of the Hispanic vote. It was a brief moment, between the xenophobia of California's Proposition 187 (which drove a whole generation of California Latinos into the arms of the Democrats) and the "don't make me push 1 for English" mentality of Tom Tancredo and Iowa's own Steve King. America is becoming more and more Hispanic, and as long as Republicans keep relying on a lily-white base, their days are numbered.
King, who once referenced herding illegal immigrants like cattle, is in line to chair a House immigration subcommittee under the new GOP regime, and ¡Somos Republicans!, "the largest and fastest growing Hispanic Republican Organization in the Southwest," objects:
Steve King has used defamatory language that is extremely offensive to Hispanics, which is found in numerous congressional records. We believe Steve King’s behavior is not appropriate for a high-level elected Republican who might be in charge of a committee that handles immigration rules...Republicans have a choice: embrace the future of a multicultural America, or stick with Steve King's vision for short term gains and long-term unviability. Even as a Democrat, I'd be happier with a Republican Party that was more appealing to, and senitive toward, Hispanics. But I suspect they'll stick with the xenophobes. Can't have anyone talking Meskin in front of y'all in the Wal-Mart checkout line.
Though it is constitutionally impossible that a mere Congressional “statute” will decide who gets to be a citizen, we believe that this insensitive and constant assailment on our Hispanic Community may push Hispanics further into the Independent, Libertarian or Democrat Party. Moreover, Hispanic voters were crucial in electing seven new Republican Hispanics to Congress and two new Republican Hispanic governors. However, Hispanics also vehemently and strongly rejected those Republicans that utilized harsh anti-immigrant rhetoric and opted for a Democrat, as it occurred in the West Coast, Colorado and Nevada.