Thursday, July 17, 2008

Giving away la tienda, promising la luna

Part II, The McCain Promises

McCain spoke to La Raza on Monday, July 14th.

He started out giving his boilerplate plan for America in general, then switched to the deals he wanted to cut with Hispanics.

First off he said, “I'm an unapologetic supporter of NAFTA, the Central American Free Trade Agreement, and the Colombian Free Trade Agreement.”

He then characterizes the Hispanic drop-out rate by saying it “poses the civil rights challenge of our time.” His soution?
*“shake up failed school bureaucracies with competition”
*“hold schools accountable for results”
*“strengthen math, science, technology and engineering curriculums”
*“empower parents with choice”
*“remove barriers to qualified instructors”
*“attract and reward superior teachers”
*“have a fair but sure process to weed out incompetents”
*“I'm a strong believer in charter schools.”

“Hispanics work hard and sacrifice a lot because their most cherished dreams are the ones they hold for their children. You understand the importance of early childhood development and the active role parents must play in their children's education to make sure they graduate on time and with an excellent opportunity to live happy and prosperous lives.” (What planet is he on? Hispanics are pathetic when it comes to preparing their children for kindergarten or getting involved in the education of their children. That line works with Asian families but not Latinos. But I’m sure the crowd lapped it up as if it were true.)

“You deserve a greater say in deciding how your children are educated, and I am committed to making sure you do.”

Now he gets down to business with Comprehensive Immigration Reform. He says:
*“I and many other colleagues twice attempted to pass comprehensive immigration legislation to fix our broken borders”
*“ensure respect for the laws of this country”
*“recognize the important economic contribution of immigrant laborers”
*“apprehend those who came here illegally to commit crimes”
*“deal practically and humanely with those who came here”

Well, that didn’t work, so here’s his plan to take another run at reform:
*“We must prove we have the resources to secure our borders and use them”
*“while respecting the dignity and rights of citizens and legal residents of the United States”
*“When we have achieved our border security goal, we must enact and implement the other parts of practical, fair and necessary immigration policy.”

Now McCain does a little hanky time. I think he’s talking about the bodies of those found in the desert and describes three of them. Then he gives this caution to all of us: “We can't let immigrants break our laws with impunity. We can't leave our borders undefended. But these people are God's children, who wanted simply to be Americans, and we cannot forget the humanity God commands of us as we seek a remedy to this problem.”

So, unlike Obama, his offer is not quite so generous. He talks about education reform and an amnesty “after we have achieved our border security goal.”

Both were pandering. Both claim success with Latino voters in past elections. I think the veep selection is critical for McCain. Right now he’s RINO approved. He’s about as far left as the GOP can safely take him. He needs to work the base with a good, conservative Vice President (if one can still be found in this country).

So, there you have it. Promises made to La Raza by both candidates. Obama passes the screen test. McCain comes in a distant second with this crowd.

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