Skip to comments.Conservatism, Texas Style: Latinos Are Making Their Home in a Welcoming GOP
Posted on 09/04/2013 7:02:30 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
The political stakes could hardly be higher.
Latinos, who have leaned Democratic, demographically are surging in Texas. And if the Democrats can turn Texas blue (or even purple) they would have a huge leg up at winning control of the executive branch of the U.S. government in future presidential elections. By achieving sufficient Democratic preeminence in Texas progressives could turn the White House blue. And they know it.
As the Democratic Partys George Washington Plunkitt of Tammany Hall once famously said, I seen my opportunities and I took em. So, too, are Plunkitts Democratic Party successors taking their opportunity announcing a full court press in Texas.
But something unexpected is happening. The more Latino Texas gets the more Republican it is trending. Latinos are making themselves right at home in a welcoming GOP. Red, not blue, is winning.
This is not happening by accident.
The Democrats are throwing some of their best people at this potential opening. The assault is led by their modern version of Santa Anna, the elite Democratic field operative Jeremy Bird Obamas 2012 national field director. Bird is the Senior Advisor to the Democrats front line assault squad Battleground Texas. BGTs executive director, Jenn Brown, was Ohio field director for Obama 2012. These are among the best operatives the Democrats have.
The Republicans modern version of General Sam Houston, Republican State Party Chairman Steve Munisteri, is orchestrating the GOP counter-insurgency. Munisteri is a nationally recognized conservative and world class political strategist. He brought the Texas GOP back from insolvency and marginality to become the dominant political force in Texas.
The more the GOP follows the Munisteri blueprint the stronger it grows. Jeremy Bird trash talks, If I were them, I would be scared. Yet the Democratic assault on the Texas GOP appears, in the Nietzschean What doesnt destroy me makes me stronger way, to be invigorating the Republicans.
Why does this skirmish matter to the rest of America? Because much of what you, dear Reader, hold dear depends on the outcome.
First: if the progressives can turn Texas blue they will sustain their control of the White House, at least for the indefinite future. Munisteri puts it this way: There are 18 states that havent gone Republican in 25 years. Together they total 240 electoral votes. All the Democrats have to do is swing Texas, with its 38 Electoral College votes. Then they have an Electoral College majority. They dont have to worry about the rest of the country.
Meaning? The Democrats seriously are gunning for political hegemony. They unashamedly desire to shift the American political culture away from (classical) liberal democratic capitalism to European-style social democracy. Their goal is to shift it permanently. Control of the White House obviously would be a huge asset in this quest.
Second, as August Comte famously said, demography is destiny. The Texas GOP, under Munisteri, quickly grasped the need for Republicans to diversify the Party as the demography shifts. The national GOP is wrestling, now, with how to become appealing to Latinos, Asians, and Blacks without alienating its conservative and mainstream base. The Texas GOP already is far advanced in doing just this.
As Munisteri said to The Texas Monthly The key to Republican success in the future is to reach out to Hispanic, African American, and Asian voters because the state is growing increasingly diverse. The failure to do that will result, in the not-too-distant future, in this turning from a Republican state to a swing state.
The Texas GOP is engaging in much more than cosmetic ethnic outreach. It has engaged in much more than an appeal for votes. The GOP is making a dedicated effort to bring Latinos, African Americans, and Asians into the party as enrolled members, as activists, as party officials, and as candidates. Beyond that the Texas GOP is engaging seriously on issues that these prospective recruits care about.
As reported by The Wall Street Journal last April:
[T]he state party began a drive last year to recruit hundreds of new Hispanic GOP party delegates to the party by calling all Hispanic-surnamed residents who voted in the last Republican primary.
David Zapata, the 30-year-old son of Mexican immigrants who runs the partys Latino outreach, said it isnt enough to win voters.
Voters are great, but we need active participants, he said. We need new people, new faces, who will be a permanent part of the party.
The GOPs most palpable shift has come on the immigration front. Republican lawmakers introduced over 100 immigration-related bills in the [previous] legislative session, including measures to deny cheaper in-state college tuition to the children of illegal immigrants and to overturn laws in several Texas cities that offered refuge to undocumented workers.
This [current] session, with the filing deadline now past, fewer than five such bills have been put forward.
Lets just say we are taking a different tone this year, said Republican state Rep. Larry Gonzalez, who represents a district just north of Austin.
A different tone is a nice understatement. Munisteri puts it more plainly:
Before the national party even spoke about sensible immigration reform well before 2012 Texas changed its platform away from deportation and called for a guest worker program.
When asked by pollsters, only 3% of Hispanics who voted in 2012 rated immigration as the number one issue. However if you asked Hispanics whether they had a favorable or unfavorable view of the GOP if the party is pro-deportation the responses are off the charts unfavorable. A platform calling for a guest worker program and you have to get in the back of the line to gain citizenship plus secure borders produces an overall favorable opinion of the Republican Party.
That overall favorable opinion among Hispanics (and other key ethnic groups, very much including Blacks and Asians) is essential to the GOP continuing to flourish as Americas center-right party. So whats actually happening in the field?
National Democrats and progressives have promised to raise and spend $10 million, and deploy 200 paid operatives, to turn Texas blue. $10 million is a huge sum for a state political committee. 200 operatives provide a veritable army. However
183 of Battleground Texass 200 political shocktroops seem to be, as of now, vaporware. BGT's website lists 17. Meanwhile, the Texas GOP has grown to an historic high staff of 20 more than tripling since 2010. And steadily grows.
The Texas GOP is on track to open eight permanent offices around the state up from one. It already has dedicated representatives engaging with Asian, Black, and Latino communities. It will grow its Latino division, alone, to over a dozen. It already has big lists of Latino and African American prospective Republican voters: to date 263,000 Blacks plus 300,000 Hispanics.
The Texas GOP, literally insolvent when Munisteri arrived less than 40 months ago, has brought in about $14 million since June 2010. It has $1.3 million cash on hand. It has no debt. Its credibility with donors is, understandably, skyrocketing.
Its not out of the question that one civic-spirited conservative or libertarian philanthropist could step forward and write a $10 million check to the Texas GOP. Doing so surely would checkmate the progressives efforts to roll up Texas and use it to pocket the White House. Checkmating that strategy provides a big political ROI.
How does this work in practice? Munisteri observes: From the list of 80,000+ Hispanic households we had before the last state convention in 2012 the net result of our engagement was over 600 delegates of Hispanic descent new to the process. The number of Republican elected officials of Hispanic descent went from 58 to 78 in a single election cycle.
As Munisteri stated it to Politico: You need to be in the community, ongoing, day after day, year after year, with representatives of the party meeting with community leaders, listening to them, responding to them, encouraging participation and promoting people within the party from diverse groups.
Will Battleground Texas succeed in turning Texas, and, with it, the White House, blue? So far the Texas GOP has thwarted this attempted Democratic coup detat. The national Democrats just might keep pouring money into Texas anyway. Not only is Texas a huge Electoral college prize. They might consider it money well spent just to try to keep Munisteri and his allies pinned down, their hands full keeping Texas red, rather than at liberty to pivot and turn back the blue tide across America.
The Texas GOPs formula, if nationalized, could destroy the progressives dreams of permanent political hegemony over America. How sad for the left, so close to victory, to have it snatched away. For those of us, however, who stand in opposition to the Vast Left Wing Conspiracy: the Munisteri Model demonstrates how to win the battle and the war.
The GOP is delusional.
Hm. We’ll see.
And if the Texas GOP is simply “GOP”, not conservative, it’s all moot, anyway.
They are trending GOP because Texas is GOP country.
Drop them in California and they will go RAT.
People tend to move in the direction of prevailing local opinion so they don’t seem to be outsiders.
People aren’t aware of the vast difference between California (or north eastern rinos) and Texas among their peoples.
California has never been conservative, nor Evangelical or social conservative Christian, Texas is both so it is a red blooded conservatism, a passionate conservatism, they believe in conservatism and will fight for it and promote it at every level.
Hispanics also differ, Catholic and non-Christian Hispanics are the democrat voters that we all know, but the Protestant Hispanics are about a 50/50 vote, that shows that Hispanics can be reached politically.
Texans are a different breed and know how to fight for what is right, TEXAS HAS THE SAME EXACT PERCENTAGE OF HISPANICS AS CALIFORNIA, yet look at how the two states vote.
If anyone can awaken the conservatism and Christianity in Hispanics, then it is Texas.
As long as the insurgence of people moving from California to Texas doesn’t continue.
As I’ve said before, if all those Mexicans would vote for conservative Republicans, I would personally place a Welcome Mat on the Rio Grande.
Yes there is TexGOPe and there are TexConservatives. Cruz showed that the GOPe can be beat.
For now it looks like Perry and Abbott are TexConservative, not smoozing with the DoWorst camp.
Studies show that the Californians fleeing to Texas by a wide margin, mostly conservative.
I hope so..
Many of those could be descendants of the Dust Bowlers that left OK and Texas in the 30s and could easily come back conservative.
If anybody wants to come here, work, take care of their family, pay their share of taxes, learn English, and otherwise assimilate in traditional Texan culture, I say “Welcome”.
Texas doesn’t have an overwhelming problem with Hispanic immigration. They pretty much pay their way. If it weren’t for some knuckleheaded regulations about so-called “bilingual education”, they’d be speaking English like Texans in the second generation. Most Hispanics around here have solid family values and are good neighbors.
The problem in Texas is Yankee and California immigration. Damn Yankees come down here and try turn Texas into New York or San Francisco.
I’m Hispanic, Catholic, and my ancestors-mostly Basques from the Pyrenees in Spain-came to South Texas to ranch in the 1700’s from Mexico to give the finger to the Spanish government there. They fought for Texas independence, and we are/were libertarian leaning conservatives-we vote Republican, and liberals, or even rinos are rare, and shunned Amish style at family gatherings.
Like many others in the rural areas of the southwest, I have spoken Spanish as a second language from early childhood-country people of all ethnicities living near the border often do-there is a tourist trap owner here who is from Pakistan, and he speaks Spanish quite well.
Since my ancestors left two places-Spain and Mexico-to get away from government in their lives, why the hell would we want it now? That is why many of us still live way in the boonies. You might be surprised at how many people of Hispanic ancestry are conservative-many of us live and work in the rural areas, where our families have been for a few hundred years-New Mexico has a lot of rural Hispanics who are conservative, too...
We do not like illegals, or want them here-most old-family Hispanics here do not-we like Ted Cruz and his ideas. I’ve never understood what is wrong with Hispanics in California-maybe something in the water?
I keep saying that Mexican Americans are not monolithic in their attitudes, like a certain other group. For Republicans to “get” M-As, they first need to learn some highlights of Mexican history.
Mexico had a vicious, bloody revolution in 1810, 1910, and is having the equivalent of one now, with the cartels. In each case, ordinary people were treated as “You are either with us, or you are with them, and we will kill you.” So they are very much in favor of peaceful politics.
Every single one of their political leaders promised them everything, but never delivered. So if a politician or party promises them something, they had better deliver, or else they will vote for the other guy.
Their motives are not government largess, but economic prosperity, the opportunity for success, and equality before the law. Sure, some are parasites, but they offer nothing in return for “free stuff”. Certainly not political loyalty.
Paradoxically, there is little desire for education beyond high school; yet at the same time they respect those who have higher education. This is changing, as is Mexico.
Some M-As are *extremely* right wing, not just conservative.
The US military has long been “a ticket to ride” for M-As, so they are often very pro-military.
Catholicism is still very popular among M-As, though many prefer a more conservative form. Likewise, there are increasing numbers of Evangelical M-As.
The bottom line is that conservatives have a long list of ways to relate to Mexican-Americans, unlike the Democrats. So the advantage in recruiting really lies with us.
The way we can foul up is by coming across as racist, or unfair, or looking down on them. If we treat them like we treat each other, they will vote Republican and support conservatism. This doesn’t mean largess or special favors, just fairness.
I really wish some rule would be made to keep people from certain states from moving here-like maybe a moonbat test-fail it, and you have to stay elsewhere-and while they’re at it, offer to pay the moving expenses to LA for the chip-on-shoulder mayor of SA and his America hating mom-they’d be right at home there...
I think that in-migration of moonbats helped turn Colorado.
My idiot niece moved there from Cali when she lost her job.
I’d be willing to bet Hispanics in California with a background/pedigree similar to yours are conservative, as well. But those aren’t the Hispanics that are being wooed to Texas or the ones I worry about in Texas (or anywhere else, for that matter). Bottom line is, this article makes lots of points about Latinos and the “GOP”. I think we can all agree that “GOP” does not necessarily translate to “conservative”, even in Texas.
They very well might be-people from very old, hard working Hispanic/Latino families likely reside in the rural areas of every state of the old Spanish territory, unnoticed because we just go about our business like always.
The present GOP is just a party, as far as I’m concerned-not a philosophy-and the establishment wing of it has gotten way too far from conservative thinking, and too statist for me.
Fortunately, the Hispanics/Latinos like me don’t need wooing-our ancestors knew that “real” freedom has nothing to do with free stuff, and everything to do with free will-hell, that is why most bought passage on a ship from Spain in the first place. We speak the language-literally and figuratively, so we can continue to busy ourselves recruiting fence sitters with sound principles to vote for folks like Ted Cruz in primaries and general elections by inviting them to see facts...
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