Jamelle Bouie, in a blog entry at the American Prospect, says that while Republicans are likely to embrace even harsher policies toward Latino immigrants if elected, some of President Obama's policies have given Latinos good reason to be wary of his administration.
Yesterday, at a meeting with journalists and bloggers at the Democratic National Committee headquarters, DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz spoke about the organization's efforts as it prepared for President Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.
During the conversation, I asked the chair about Obama's potential difficulties with Latino voters. Between the failure to shepherd the DREAM Act through Congress, the absence of comprehensive immigration reform, and the unprecedented number of deportations — in addition to a poor economy which has disproportionately harmed Latinos — the Hispanic community has good reason to be skeptical of the administration. And while Republicans are likely to embrace even more draconian policies toward Latino immigrants if elected, it's not enough for the Obama administration to be the least bad option.
"Democratic policy under President Obama has been a plus and a boon for Hispanics, particularly with immigration reform," said Wasserman Schultz in response to the question. As an example, she offered a recent directive from the administration: "President Obama has directed ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] to prioritize deportations to ensure that we're deporting criminals first."
Read Jemelle Bouie's entire blog entry at the American Prospect.