Cognitive Bigotry

Um...shouldn't this be causing a couple million Republican heads to explode?
[Mel] Martinez, Republican of Florida, made his debut speech on the floor in both English and Spanish, telling Hispanic Americans that Alberto R. Gonzales, President Bush's nominee to be attorney general, is "one of us."

The speech appears to be the first made by a senator on the floor in Spanish or any language other than English, said Donald Ritchie, a Senate historian.

Seriously...talk about the shoe on the other foot test...

so, is there a breaking point to all of this? i mean, does anyone think that the republicans will be able to play both sides of the fence (court more of the hispanic vote while not scaring off their blanco nino powerbase) is this another case of them having their cake and eating it too, like california republicans and other oxymoronic terms? or will the red belt through the middle of the country eventually freak out and start asking why "those guys" were invited to the party?
It's a good question. I really don't know the answer. There are some pretty big anti-immigrant bigots in the border states where most Latinos live, which are mostly Republican. But there have always been Latinos there, and most people have lived with their reality for a long time, even if they think they're scornworthy. I think long-term, the Republicans' coalitions in those states (Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado [not actually border state, but with similar demographics], Texas [yes, even Texas]) are going to be in trouble, because of the tensions in their current coalition (between old-school white bigots, libertarian, conservation-minded Westerners, weak-party-ID suburbanites and big business [who will start deserting the party if they continue their monumentally idiotic fiscal policies]).

The challenge - big, but by no means impossible - is for Democrats in those states to formulate a new appeal based on their shifting electoral realities.

But mostly, I think the Republicans in the near-term are probably going to be able to play both sides of this issue, because the vast majority of their support comes from states that don't actually have Latino populations, so they don't need to worry about pissing off the Bible Belt with appeals to the coloureds, 'cause that's not where they're at.
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