May 23, 2006

"Bush Losing Hispanics" Couldn't happen to a nicer guy

Over on the blog, I write:

“Bush Losing Hispanics:” Couldn’t Happen to a Nicer Guy. (Too Bad about GOP, Though)

The Washington Post runs a telling headline:

“Bush Is Losing Hispanics’ Support, Polls Show;
Surveys Find the Immigration Debate Is Also Alienating White Conservatives”

by Thomas B. Edsall and Zachary A. Goldfarb, May 21, 2006

The priority given Hispanics in this headline is another example of a consistent pattern of media bias. Hispanics cast only 6.0 percent of the vote in the last election, according to the Census Bureau. White conservatives, whom the Post admits are also alienated, account for roughly four to six times more votes than all Hispanics put together.

If you just went by what you read in the newspapers you’d have to assume that the Constitution had been amended to make minority votes count more heavily than white votes.

Still, Edsall and Goldfarb confirm what we’ve been saying for over a half decade: the Bush-Rove immigration strategy makes no political sense. They write:

“Cumulatively, the data underscore the perils for Bush and his party in the immigration debate churning on Capitol Hill, one that threatens to bleed away support simultaneously from the Republican base and from Hispanic swing voters, whom Bush strategists had hoped to make an important new part of the GOP coalition.”


In response, Bush and his GOP allies like Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE) have been attempting to appeal to Hispanics by denouncing the GOP’s conservative base as “the political lowest common denominator” (in Hagel’s words last Thursday).

Not surprisingly, the spectacle of leading Republicans condemning the salt of the Republican Party isn’t making Hispanics trust Republicans more. [More]

For some reason, Bush and Hagel's attempt to reassure Hispanics that they should go for a ride with the GOP by denouncing more typical Republicans as anti-Hispanic racists reminds me of the famous opening scene in Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, where Hunter and his attorney, both deeply twisted on drugs, pick up a young hitchhiker in the desert and try to reassure him:

"We're your friends," said my attorney. "We're not like the others."

... Maybe I'd better have a chat with this boy, I thought. Perhaps if I explain things, he'll rest easy.

Of course. I leaned around in the seat and gave him a fine big smile ... admiring the shape of his skull.

"By the way," I said. "There's one thing you should probably understand."

He stared at me, not blinking. Was he gritting his teeth?

"Can you hear me?" I yelled.

He nodded.

"That's good," I said. "Because I want you to know that we're on our way Las Vegas to find the American Dream." I smiled. "That's why we rented this car. It was the only way to do it. Can you grasp that?"

... The kid in the back seat looked like he was ready to jump right out of the car and take his chances.

Our vibrations were getting nasty -- but why? I was puzzled, frustrated. Was there no communication in this car? Had we deteriorated to the level of dumb beasts?

Nobody answered. My attorney was cracking another amyl and the kid was climbing out of the back seat, scrambling down the trunk lid. "Thanks for the ride," he yelled. "Thanks a lot. I like you guys. Don't worry about me." His feet hit the asphalt and he started running back towards Baker. Out in the middle of the desert, not a tree in sight.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

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