Syndicated columnist Ruben Navarrette is about as liberal on immigration policy as any garden-variety Democrat. So it’s newsworthy when he says Democrats are taking Latino support for granted.
A self-proclaimed “Never Trumper,” Navarrette wrote last week that he now understands where “Latinos for Trump” are coming from.
“They have a front-row seat not just to the pain of deportations, but also to how many immigrants commit crimes, or abuse social services,” Navarratte stated.
The columnist says too many Democratic candidates have an outreach strategy that can be summed up in six words: “Vote for us. We’re not Republicans.”
Whether he’s onto something in these midterm elections, or just whistling Dixie, Navarrette raises a legitimate point about Hispanic voters that most mainstream media outlets refuse to acknowledge.
How else to explain that in a state like Texas, where 40 percent of the population is Hispanic, Democrats haven’t won a statewide election since 1994?
The Party of Jefferson and Jackson may rationalize that voter turnout among Latinos has been anemic. Yet that’s merely a symptom of a party failing to motivate a growing segment of the electorate that it historically claims as its base.
Things could go the Democrats’ way today, though Navarrette is far from sanguine about the prospects from a Latino perspective.
“In reality, Democrats have never been there for Latinos. And now they’re surprised this group may not be there for them in the midterm elections?” he muses.
Navarrette is a decent guy who generally doesn’t demonize those whose opinions differ from his. Democrats – and Republicans — would do well to heed his counsel here.