Around the end of November, alot of buzz began to form around possible efforts to form a grassroots effort modeled like the Tea Party – only instead of mobilizing around those that are engaged against the Barack Obama administration for whatever reason, it would be organized around immigrants’ rights:
Latino leaders in Nevada and around the country are floating the idea of breaking traditional ties with the Democratic Party and creating a grass-roots independent movement tentatively called the Tequila Party. According to Delen Goldberg at the Las Vegas Sun, the leaders want to pressure the Democratic Party to deliver on Latinos’ priorities much in the same way the tea party has done with the GOP over the past few years.
Robert de Posada, the former GOP operative behind this fall’s controversial “Don’t Vote” ads aimed at Latinos in Nevada and California, tells The Lookout that he has heard “rumblings” of this movement among national Latino leaders.
“The Tequila Party is a great concept to basically say, ‘You know what? This blind support for you is coming to an end,’” De Posada says. “If you are perceived as someone who will never vote for a Republican, then you’re screwed,” because Democrats will take you for granted, he says.
De Posada is very right. Alot of the Democratic leadership presumes that minorities will flock to them given the alternative. With George W. Bush and his strange but genuine brand of multiculturalism gone, any element of demographic pluralism is gone from the Republican Party. A pity since as strong as religion, social conservatism and entrepreneurship are among many Hispanic immigrants, the Republican Party should be their natural home.
Now, while Yahoo News quoted a reasonable sounding conservative leading proponent of the Tequila Party,the Washington Times staff foamed at the mouth in response to protests of Arizona’s SB 1070 immigration party. While the “Tequila Party” sounded to De Posada like a message of independence to the Democratic Party, WT saw it as something else entirely:
The Tea Partiers do not incite violence; they are salt-of-the-earth middle Americans who are desperately worried about the misguided policies and wrongheaded vision being promoted by President Obama and his congressional allies. Contrast them with the younger, less educated, lower income, angry, racially motivated mob that turned out in Phoenix. The Tequila Party and gangsters like them represent the core and the pride of the liberal base. If an angry, shouting mob throwing bottles at police is the face of contemporary liberalism, it’s no wonder Americans are turning against them in droves.
Good grief! Allahpundit, the fairly reasonable (though I presume he shares the nativist attitudes of his boss, Michelle Malkin) conservative blogger at Hot Air, made a far more coherent analysis than WT. Unlike WT, he doesn’t equate the “Tequila Party” with anti-SB 1070 protesters either:
Sounds fantastic, actually. Having seen the way Democrats take black voters for granted, they’ve decided they’re not going to be treated the same way. Smart thinking. The solution: Organizing a tea-party-esque movement to pressure the party from the outside on issues like amnesty and, er … amnesty. Which, if successful, would help the GOP a bunch. For starters, it would raise the odds that Latino liberals loyal to the “tequila party” will stay home en masse if Democrats can’t deliver for the group. It also risks alienating Latinos who favor Democrats on balance but are lukewarm or cool to the idea of comprehensive immigration reform, not to mention all the independents who think tougher border enforcement is a good idea. And by overtly racializing itself, it threatens to cause otherwise needless tensions within the Democratic coalition. Might be a good move for pro-amnesty Latinos, and it’s almost certainly helpful to the GOP, but I can’t imagine that The One will be thrilled at the prospect.
“The One,” of course, is a less than complementary nickname for President Barack Obama, satirizing the strong self-confidence that got him into the White House.
Now, Allahpundit’s words about “overtly racializing itself” are really important to keep in mind here. Part of the genesis of Voice of the Migrant was a shared concern that I and PunkJohnnyCash had about the intense bureaucracy that makes it difficult even for people who have worked here for years or married an American to attain citizenship. Given the welcoming words on the Statue of Liberty and the history of America as a destination center for the world’s most creative, this website seeks reform that rewards those that come here to improve themselves, their families and this country.
I’ve known alot of immigrants who have come to the United States. They ranged from arriving from North Africa to Ukraine. They all had difficulty. I even briefly considered marrying one out of empathy with her situation. To reduce immigration reform to a Hispanic/Latino issue and not a holistic one is not only wrongheaded but possibly counterproductive.