George Will: maybe we should make Puerto Rico a state
George Will offers the (at the least) naive "Through Puerto Rico, the GOP can reach out to Hispanics" (link) in which he retails the suggestion by Puerto Rico's Republican governor that making that territory a U.S. state would help the Republicans. It's not clear whether Will is entirely sold on the idea, but in any case the only party helped would be the Democrats:
[Governor Luis Fortuno] wants Republicans to couple insistence on border enforcement with support for Puerto Rican statehood. This, he says, would resonate deeply among Hispanics nationwide. His premise is that many factors -- particularly, the Telemundo and Univision television channels -- have created a common consciousness among Hispanics in America.
And, that's a problem: both channels are strong supporters of illegal immigration, at least by Hispanics. Why give them more power? Why isn't Will suggesting ways to take power away from them? Further, encouraging "a common consciousness" - what we call around here pan-Hispanic ethnic nationalism - isn't in the U.S.'s best interests. In any case, Mexicans and Mexican-Americans aren't huge fans of Puerto Ricans, and vice versa; Will probably didn't know that. About the only reason why Mexican-Americans - the majority of Hispanics in the U.S. - should support Puerto Rican issues would be due to that pan-Hispanic ethnic nationalism. And, that wouldn't break the Republicans' way: the Republicans would be giving more power to far-left concepts and to the Democratic Party. The Democrats already spread the message that "real" Hispanics don't support Republicans, and Fortuno's idea would make that worse.
Will also notes that not all Puerto Ricans are in favor of this plan and that we don't want "lukewarm citizens". He also acknowledges some of the reasons why the Democrats might support the same plan, then says:
Fortuno disagrees, noting that while Republicans on the mainland were losing in 2008, he was elected in the island's biggest landslide in 44 years. The party he leads won more than two-thirds of the seats in both houses of the legislature and three-fifths of the mayoralties, including that of San Juan. Fortuno, who calls himself a "values candidate" and goes to Catholic services almost every day, says that Puerto Ricans are culturally conservative -- 78 percent are pro-life, 91 percent oppose same-sex marriage and 30 percent of the 85 percent who are Christian are evangelicals. A majority supports his agenda, which includes tax and spending cuts, trimming 16,000 from public payrolls to begin eliminating the deficit that was 45 percent of the size of the budget.
The middle part is Karl Rove's supposed plan to reach out to Hispanics. Yet, maybe demagoguing social issues isn't the best way forward for the GOP or the U.S.