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Russ Stewart: Democrats' Hispanic Base Has Yet to Materialize

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Tweed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:02 PM
Original message
Russ Stewart: Democrats' Hispanic Base Has Yet to Materialize
http://www.russstewart.com/1-5-05.htm

For those of you unfamiliar with Russ Stewart, he is one of the best political columnists on Illinois and Chicago politics, if not the best. He writes a weekly article about Illinois and Chicago politics and it is usually available by Wednesday afternoon. This week's article is very interesting about how Hispanics vote (or don't vote in some cases). It is interesting because they are culturally conservative but economically liberal.

Here are the first three paragraphs:

Political power results from votes, not potential. That's why, at least locally, "Hispanic political power" is an oxymoron, and it does not yet exist in Chicago and Illinois, even though it exists elsewhere in the nation.

According to the 2000 census, Hispanics are America's major minority, as the U.S. Hispanic population nearly doubled between 1990 and 2000, due to both immigration and high birth rates. Nationwide, Hispanics now number 37.6 million, while blacks number 36.1 million. During that period, Hispanics grew from 19.6 percent to 26 percent of the population in Chicago, from 13.5 percent to 19.9 percent in Cook County and from 2.9 percent to 12.3 percent in the state.

The expanding areas of Hispanic growth in Chicago are Albany Park, Cragin and Logan Square on the Northwest Side, South Lawndale on the West Side, Archer Heights and West Lawn near Midway Airport on the Southwest Side, and the area near Hegewisch on the Far Southeast Side. In the Cook County suburbs, Cicero, Melrose Park, Berwyn and Stone Park have experienced explosive Hispanic population growth, as have Aurora, Waukegan, Elgin, Wood Dale, Addison and Bensenville in the Collar Counties."

This paragraph highlights the conservative values that Hispanics have:

"However, according to a survey of 600 registered Hispanic voters in Cook County conducted from Nov. 20 to 22 by McCulloch Research and Polling, with a margin of error of 3.8 percent, the Republicans have no cause for gloom. On cultural and fiscal issues, the respondents are notably conservative: 67.2 percent oppose gay marriage, 43.5 percent oppose abortion in any circumstance (while 36.8 percent support it), 57 percent back school vouchers that would give a tax credit to parents who send their children to private schools, 70 percent support the death penalty for capital crimes, 49 percent favor the Bush Administration's immigration plan to allow "illegal aliens" to stay in America for a limited period, and 60.2 percent feel that their federal, state and county taxes are "too high."

I find it interesting that 70% support the death penalty. As a fellow Catholic, I find it odd that the number is that high. Anyway, the following paragraph shows how liberal they are when it comes to economic policy and really shows that Illinois Democrats need to stick to bread and butter issues to maintain/grow upon the Hispanic vote. It's a short read with a great amount of insight.

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Prodemsouth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:06 PM
Response to Original message
1. If Democrats had a message of economic populism and softer social
conservative message- they would be the majority party.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:14 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. They took working class economic issues off the table 30 years ago
during the Nixon years, when they thought they were defeated because of the War on Poverty. The damned fools didn't realize that they were being defeated because of all the scruffy kids being beaten by the cops outside their convention, by the unwinnable war in Vietnam which Nixon pledged to end (but Humphrey didn't), and by the winning rhetoric of the silent majority.

It had to be the all time stupidest decision made by any political party in the history of this country and made sure the only economic issue the GOP pushed, tax cuts, would be the only economic issue out there.

Joe Sixpack doesn't care so much about balancing the Federal budget. He does care that inflation and taxes are eating up his paycheck and he's falling a little more behind every year.

Until the party recognizes this, they will continue to lose elections, and they will deserve it.
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
2. Rod McCulloch is a good pollester - what percentage of hispanics
in Illinois voted GOP in the Kerry/Bush race?
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Tweed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. It might have been 75%-25%, the actual number is in the article
Sorry I don't remember off the top of my head.
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Rican1 Donating Member (144 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:28 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. Don't know the Hispanic vote for Illinois
But if you believe the exit polls, nationally they went 56% to 44% for Kerry. Maybe Bush did so well with Hispanics because he knows "un poco Espanol"
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Hispanic org polls said 30% GOP - unchanged from 2000 - and the
article said 25% - but some poll of hispanics gave 30% to GOP.

I was wondering Rod McCulloch had his own number.
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seventythree Donating Member (904 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-08-05 10:58 PM
Response to Original message
7. thanks for the link
That was a very interesting article -- and I got a hint of where Miriam is today. She is the most dynamic female campaigner Illinois has seen, in my opinion, because she "connects" on the stump. Lisa is very,very good, so she could vie for the title, but she doesn't "connect" in the same way. I disagree with the article regarding her possibilities if she gets that plea vacated, and I am going to google to see what that exculpatory evidence was since I watched that whole mess unfold very closely. I disagree with her future prospects because, as dynamic as she is, she has a long way to go in fund raising ability(which is how the trouble started)and in learning the "boys' game." Can she overcome those political short comings? I don't know, but I still have her t-shirt which I am willing to break out -- geesh, will it even fit, now? I've been wrong about pols, before, most notably,Jane Byrne, but the day Miriam whispered in my ear -- "I am so glad you are here -- I am so tired of being the only woman among all these a$$holes," she won me.
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Tweed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-09-05 03:05 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Yeah, that link is really helpful
As I said in the first post, Russ Stewart is fantastic for anyone who wants to be serious about Chicago and Illinois politics. Based on your posts, it seems like you are pretty well connected with the system. However, Russ Stewart is great for all and any of us because he covers so much and he covers it so in-depth. I have his column saved to my favorites and every Wednesday is like Christmas with each new article.
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seventythree Donating Member (904 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-09-05 10:30 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. I put him in my favorites,
and will try to remember Wednesdays. I am no longer connected to the system -- just an old war horse who is now out to pasture. I have my moments of nostalgia, but the pasture is quite lovely.
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