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Mel Martinez quits as RNC chairman; Peter Wallsten/LAT offers pro-illegal immigration spin

As predicted and even sooner than was hoped, Sen. Mel Martinez (R-FL) has quit as the head of the RNC. Don't let the door hit you, etc.

Now comes Peter Wallsten of the Los Angeles Times to put the worst possible face on it ("Latino head of RNC resigns", link). While it reads like something Howard Dean could have written, even he might consider it race-baiting:
The Republican Party's highest-ranking Latino official abruptly resigned Friday, marking the latest casualty in the GOP's bitter internal fight over immigration and dealing another setback to President Bush's years-long effort to court Latino voters.

The announcement by Sen. Mel Martinez of Florida that he was quitting as general chairman of the Republican National Committee came after he had expressed frustration over the tenor of the immigration debate within his party. Martinez will remain in his Senate post...

...The White House had engineered the ascent of the Cuban-born Martinez over the objections of many conservatives as part of an effort to repair the GOP's image among Latinos. That image suffered when Republican congressional leaders and conservative activists stymied administration-backed measures that would have created a path to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants...
I wasn't joking above: Howard Dean could have written those paragraphs. Must Latino voters be courted by hiring someone who's of the same race as they? Isn't that more of a Democratic/far-left assumption? Must they be courted by hiring someone who supports massive immigration? Isn't that assumption not only false but against the best interests of the U.S.? And, while Bush certainly seems to favor Hispanics over other groups, isn't his attempt to court the mythical Hispanic vote basically just because he's corrupt and his backers want cheap labor (and perhaps because he wants to get his hands on Mexico's oil). And, aren't Martinez' claims about the "tenor" basically just sleazy attempts to call the majority of members of his party bigots in order to cow them into supporting the importation of cheap labor?

Those questions are obviously too honest for a dishonest "reporter" like Wallsten, who goes on to quote GOP consultant Lionel Sosa, who brings his own brand of poison to the issue. Wallsten doesn't disclose that Sosa is supporting Bill Richardson for president. He even did so in explictly racial terms: "Blood runs thicker than politics". Note that Wallsten himself wrote the article where he said that. This time around he says:
"Mel Martinez was a symbol of the party's outreach to Latinos, and that seems to be disappearing... It is not a good day for Latino Republicans, that's for sure."
More poison follows:
Robert de Posada, president of the Republican-leaning Latino Coalition [and also linked to Western Union], said Martinez's departure is especially disheartening because it follows the resignation of another high-profile Latino in the GOP: former U.S. Atty. Gen. Alberto R. Gonzales.

"The message that it sends is Latinos are not welcome," De Posada said. "The radical conservative base has a temporary victory right now."

Sun, 10/21/2007 - 18:48 · Importance: 4