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No More Boring White Guys for the GOP
Townhall.com ^ | August 8, 2012 | Jonah Goldberg

Posted on 08/08/2012 1:52:03 AM PDT by Kaslin

"A friend of mine, a Hispanic entrepreneur, asked me a question some time ago. He said, 'When is the last time you saw a Hispanic panhandler?' I think it's a great question. I'll tell you, in my life I never once have seen a Hispanic panhandler, because in our community it would be viewed as shameful to be out on the street begging."

That was Republican U.S. Senate candidate Ted Cruz of Texas on "Fox News Sunday." He went on to make the case that Latinos are culturally conservative and economically entrepreneurial.

Just for the record, I've seen a Latino panhandler or two. Or at least I think they were Latino -- I don't usually quiz panhandlers about their ethnic backgrounds.

But Cruz is right that there do seem to be fewer Latino beggars than other ethnicities (though in my experience, Asian-Americans are the biggest shirkers when it comes to creating an ethnically diverse lumpenproletariat), and I think Cruz's pride in this fact is refreshing -- and helpful.

I've been saying for a while now that this is the last presidential election in American history where the GOP will benefit from having a boring white guy as the presidential nominee.

This is not a point about racial animosity toward Barack Obama, perhaps the most exaggerated issue of the last four years. The key, as it relates to 2012, is not the white part of that formulation, it's the boring part. The operatic nature of Obama's campaign in 2008 and his inability to live up to the expectations he set for himself have created a market for bland Mr. Fixit types.

But going forward, the GOP needs to figure out a way to become more appealing to new constituencies, particularly younger voters and Latinos.

Boring white guys aren't great for that project. But candidates like Ted Cruz are.

It's hardly a novel insight that the GOP needs to deal with America's changing demographics. Inside the Beltway, the conventional explanation for how Republicans should do that tends to boil down to pandering and capitulation. For instance, Hispanics care about immigration, we're told, therefore Republicans should adopt the same policies as the Democrats.

The substance of those policies aside, there are political problems with this thinking. First, Republicans rarely if ever win such bidding wars.

Second, there's a faulty assumption here: that various ethnicities, and young people generally, are both monolithic and hardwired to support certain policies and are therefore immune to persuasion.

But young people almost by definition believe in things they eventually grow out of. The same goes for Latino voters, who are not monolithic in almost any sense: racially, ethnically, religiously or ideologically.

For instance, contrary to much of what you've heard in the press, the Latino vote in the United States has been growing less Democratic over the last 30 years, according to Sean Trende, the senior elections analyst for RealClearPolitics.com. Moreover, illegal immigration is nowhere near as important an issue for Latinos (as opposed to Latino activists) as the press makes it seem. In 2008, less than half (46 percent) of Latino voters who voted Democratic told exist pollsters that the issue was either "very" or "extremely" important to them. And nearly a third of Latinos who considered illegal immigration "very" or "extremely" important voted Republican.

Trende argues that most of the Democratic advantage among Latinos can be explained by income. Poor people tend to vote Democratic. There are a lot of poor Latinos in the U.S. Still, if you control for income, the Latino voter becomes less distinct from the average voter.

In short, Latinos lean decidedly Democratic, but they are decidedly persuadable as well. And young politicians like Cruz -- and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, also of Cuban descent -- have a better shot at persuading them.

White Republican politicians tend to be terrified of racial and ethnic activists and the journalists who empower them. This results in many GOP pols sounding condescending, pandering or dull when they try to reach out to minorities.

Young, energetic, whip-smart and philosophically coherent politicians like Cruz and Rubio can confidently appeal to Latinos without sounding condescending and without caving to liberal assumptions about how to win over Latinos. They're also harder to demonize.

I mean, just imagine if Romney had mused about the nation's dearth of Hispanic panhandlers.


TOPICS: Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: aliens; diversity; hispanicvoters; mittromney; tedcruz
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1 posted on 08/08/2012 1:52:13 AM PDT by Kaslin
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>> ‘When is the last time you saw a Hispanic panhandler?’

When is the last time you saw an Amish gang-banger?


2 posted on 08/08/2012 2:01:53 AM PDT by Gene Eric (Demoralization is a weapon of the enemy. Don't get it, don't spread it!)
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Oops, we’re courting minorities... forgot.


3 posted on 08/08/2012 2:03:24 AM PDT by Gene Eric (Demoralization is a weapon of the enemy. Don't get it, don't spread it!)
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To: Kaslin

Boring White guys built this country...


4 posted on 08/08/2012 2:05:46 AM PDT by Cowboy Bob (Greed + Envy = Liberalism)
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To: Cowboy Bob

Exactly


5 posted on 08/08/2012 2:08:33 AM PDT by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: Kaslin

I don’t see a lot of Hispanic panhandlers, but I see a lot of them lined out the door of the local welfare office, in public housing, and pulling out the EBT Food Stamp cards to pay for food for their truckload of anchor babies in tow.

Ironically, I have also learned that the white dude begging for change on the streets has no clue what kind of social services he may be entitled to.

I do volunteer work, so I come in contact with these folks all the time.

If the illegals weren’t sucking up all the public resources, then maybe there wouldn’t be Americans begging on the streets.


6 posted on 08/08/2012 2:10:09 AM PDT by radpolis (Liberals: You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy)
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To: Cowboy Bob
Boring White guys built this country...

Put that on a bumper sticker.

7 posted on 08/08/2012 2:13:06 AM PDT by thecodont
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To: radpolis
I don’t see a lot of Hispanic panhandlers, but I see a lot of them lined out the door of the local welfare office, in public housing, and pulling out the EBT Food Stamp cards to pay for food for their truckload of anchor babies in tow.

This. For a minority that's (purportedly, at any rate) "culturally conservative," an inordinate number certainly do seem both practiced AT and eager TO BE living la vida liberal, lifestyle-wise.

(... and we won't get into the whole "how 'conservative' can your preferred sub-group genuinely be -- culturally or otherwise -- when so many millions upon millions of same knowingly and enthusiastically violate multiple federal laws in arriving here, to begin with...?" thing.)

8 posted on 08/08/2012 2:23:32 AM PDT by KentTrappedInLiberalSeattle ("If you're not fiscally AND socially conservative, you're not conservative!" - Jim Robinson, 9-1-10)
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To: Kaslin; Liz; AuntB
"A friend of mine, a Hispanic entrepreneur, asked me a question some time ago. He said, 'When is the last time you saw a Hispanic panhandler?

I guess his "friend" has never been near a welfare office, or near an EBT checkout, or near a Home Depot.

9 posted on 08/08/2012 2:40:38 AM PDT by raybbr (People who still support Obama are either a Marxist or a moron.)
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To: raybbr
I guess his "friend" has never been near a welfare office, or near an EBT checkout, or near a Home Depot.

What's wrong with that? I never go near a welfare office or EBT "checkout" either. However, I can't fault the people hanging out near Home Depot. At least they are looking to work for their money, I don't consider them panhandlers at all.

10 posted on 08/08/2012 2:47:13 AM PDT by SamAdams76
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To: radpolis

The truth you speak is there. One only need to look at the illegal hispanic mamas pushing the carts containing their anchor babies down the street en masse to the local grocery store where they’ll redeem their WICs certificates, spend their TANF money with their EBT card.

All this while their ‘husbands’ are out standing by the local gas station to get $10/hour pay for which he’ll pay NO taxes. When he falls off a roof, the ambulance will take him to the emergency room where you and I will pay the bill.


11 posted on 08/08/2012 2:48:56 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: Kaslin

I lived in San Diego for 30 years. Yes there are Hispanic panhandlers and I’m not talking about the ones lined up on El Camino Real in the mornings looking for day laborer Jobs.

I’ve seen more Hispanic panhandlers than black panhandlers — but white panhandlers are the more prevalent.

I have never ever seen an Asian panhandler


12 posted on 08/08/2012 2:58:00 AM PDT by Usagi_yo
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To: Kaslin

The hardest working guys I ever saw were Latino waiters in some of the Manhattan restaurants where I used to work. These guys worked like dogs. One guy worked a full month of doubles and this was on his feet, every day, uptempo, dealing with the public, moving the whole time. He was exhausted, but he kept going. I did the same thing, but only for short periods of time.


13 posted on 08/08/2012 3:47:08 AM PDT by Dr. Thorne (Don't vote for anyone who takes contributions from Goldman Sachs)
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To: Kaslin

In all my years in NYC, I’ve never seen a Hispanic panhandler. Never thought about it before. Only whites and blacks do it, I guess.


14 posted on 08/08/2012 3:53:43 AM PDT by miss marmelstein
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To: Kaslin

Joan,

How about we start this debate in December, 2012 - rather than August?


15 posted on 08/08/2012 4:01:50 AM PDT by BobL (Cruz'd to Victory - July 31, 2012)
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To: Kaslin

I was held up at gunpoint by a hispanic. Yeah, they are pillars of society. Yeah, one can generalize about an entire non-race (hispanics can be any race according to the govt).


16 posted on 08/08/2012 4:09:29 AM PDT by PghBaldy (Obama 07/22/12: "we all reflect on how we can do something about some of the senseless violence...")
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To: PghBaldy

That was sarcasm, in case people can’t tell. Hispanics like Sikhs and muslims, built this country. That is sarcasm too.


17 posted on 08/08/2012 4:14:07 AM PDT by PghBaldy (Obama 07/22/12: "we all reflect on how we can do something about some of the senseless violence...")
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To: Gene Eric
I have seen jails filled with Hispanic rapists, murderers, drug dealers, child molesters, gangbangers, burglars, copper thieves and DUI killers... not a single panhandler though.

LLS

18 posted on 08/08/2012 4:30:00 AM PDT by LibLieSlayer (Don't Tread On Me)
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To: Kaslin
My city is being overrun by foreign peoples. I see an ocean of foreign Hispanics, Muslims, Pakistanis, Somalis, Africans, Asians, Haitans etc.

Obama keeps letting them into the U.S.A. . This is why Americans are begging on the street as immigrants have taken any jobs that are available.

This has to stop.

19 posted on 08/08/2012 4:33:21 AM PDT by rurgan (Sunset all laws at 4 years.China is destroying U.S. ability to manufacture,makes everything)
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To: Kaslin
My city is being overrun by foreign peoples. I see an ocean of foreign Hispanics, Muslims, Pakistanis, Somalis, Africans, Asians, Haitans etc.

Obama keeps letting them into the U.S.A. . This is why Americans are begging on the street as immigrants have taken any jobs that are available.

This has to stop. Go back to your country you sick pukes. This is my country.We have no jobs in this Obama economy.

20 posted on 08/08/2012 4:34:45 AM PDT by rurgan (Sunset all laws at 4 years.China is destroying U.S. ability to manufacture,makes everything)
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