Democrat Bill Richardson has officially entered the presidential race with a naked appeal to Hispanics, saying in an interview that it's "rudimentary politics" to make sure the country's fastest growing voting bloc knows he's one of them.Likewise, John Edwards could stress that he's white, Hillary Clinton could stress that she's a white woman, right? Just trying to reach out to their base. I'm sure an ethnic nationalist like Bill Richardson wouldn't have a problem with that.
Richardson announced his candidacy in both English and Spanish from the heart of the U.S. Hispanic population and the nation's most delegate-rich state [i.e., Los Angeles]...
Richardson told The Associated Press that he's not running exclusively as a Hispanic, but as the American governor of New Mexico who is proud to be Latino.
"One of my potential problems is that one of my potential bases - Hispanics - don't know that I'm Hispanic, so I'm trying to change that. It's just rudimentary politics," Richardson said in an interview. "When my name recognition among Hispanics is below 10 percent, I've got to accentuate it, because it's a potential base for me."
In both English and Spanish, Richardson criticized the immigration bill under debate in Congress, which he said would separate families by requiring illegal immigrants who are heads of households to return to their home countries before gaining legal status. But he said the proposal is a "step in the right direction" because it would establish a path to citizenship and because it increases border patrols.Note that Bill Richardson is or was working for the OAS as their "special envoy" to encourage discussion on immigration matters. He's not getting paid, but if he were he'd be earning his keep.
In an interview later at the exclusive Regency Club, where he was holding an evening fundraiser, Richardson said he would vote for the bill if he were in Congress. But he said he would try to amend it to make improvements, including an elimination of the required return to home countries and the creation of a 370-mile border fence.
"I am saying 'It's Bill Richardson Lopez and I am one of you and I would like you to consider me, not because I am Hispanic but because I have the best program for the country'," he told Reuters in an interview late on Monday.Obvious translation provided here.
Mr. Richardson initially said he would support the immigration compromise announced earlier this week. But on Wednesday, he said that after reading it in detail, he had decided to oppose it, saying the measure placed too great a burden on immigrants — tearing apart families that wanted to settle in the United States, creating a permanent tier of second-class immigrant workers and financing a border fence that Mr. Richardson had long opposed.Maybe the OAS called and told him this was one of those "situations".
Politics · Wed, 05/23/2007 - 10:25 · Importance: 1