Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Myth of the Racist Hispanic Exploded

Whether at the national, statewide, or local level, the theory (or wishful thinking) that Hispanic citizens are closet racists and would not vote for a black man for President has been proven wrong.

Sen. Mary Jane Garcia, from Dona Ana, speaking on the record from the National Democratic Convention, told the Rocky Mountain News “I don’t know one single Hispanic over 50 who will cast a vote for Obama.” She added that “there have always been conflicts between blacks and browns,” suggesting he would have a difficult time winning the state. And Bernalillo County Republican Party Chair Fernando C. de Baca went even further: "The truth is that Hispanics came here as conquerors. African-Americans came here as slaves. ... Hispanics consider themselves above blacks. They won't vote for a black president." The latter comment was bitterly denounced by many Democrats, including House Speaker Ben Lujan, and De Baca was forced to resign as party chair in Bernalillo county.

Now that the results are coming in, it is clear that it was largely because of Hispanic votes that Obama was able to win Nevada by a whopping 12 points and Colorado by 7. In New Mexico largely because of Hispanic votes, Obama won by 15 points. Even in Sen. Garcia's own county, Obama held strong leads in precincts that are heavily Hispanic. In the three Anthony precincts, for example, according to preliminary figures, Obama carried the election by a whopping 89% of the vote. Polling of Hispanic populations during the elections had pretty much shattered the myth anyway, indicating that in New Mexico Hispanics were supporting Obama by a stronger margin than they supported Kerry four years ago, and that Hispanic citizens were lining up behind Obama in other states in high proportions as well. So much for that myth.

An more detailed analysis of the South Valley vote this year will appear here when the precinct totals are available.

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