Somehow Scott Stroud writing this does not surprise me in the least (emphasis mine -- ed.):
Congressman Ciro Rodriguez didn't say much during the fall campaign about Arizona's new immigration law, which Republican Congressman-elect Francisco “Quico” Canseco heartily endorsed.Good grief, what a git. It's not demonizing ethnic groups. It's demonizing LAWBREAKERS. There's a big difference there. I love how Stroud just breezed right over the fact that Francisco Canseco "heartily endorsed" the controversial Arizona immigration law and then went right into talking about other aspects of the immigration issue. And it's not as if that law wasn't one of the most-discussed news items in YEARS. So. Let's repeat this, just for good measure. Francisco Canseco endorsed the new hugely controversial (to the media) Arizona immigration law. In a congressional district whose voting-age population is 63 percent Latino. And he WON. So apparently the law and Canseco's endorsement of it -- from the perspective of Democrats and Latino advocacy groups -- at best was not a big deal to said population and at worst was a factor in Canseco's win. I would not extrapolate this to the Latino population as a whole in Texas or nationwide, but it would be very interesting to see what would've happened in other districts, especially those whose races were as contentious as the one in District 23, had one of the candidates endorsed the Arizona law. Something tells me we're not getting a picture of how Latinos (who came here legally) feel about stricter immigration laws that's anywhere near accurate.
In a district with a voting-age population that's 63 percent Hispanic, that's a major reason the Democrat lost Tuesday.
It remains the issue on which Republicans are most likely to crack open a bottle of crazy, diminishing their appeal to moderates, independents and even Republicans who think demonizing ethnic groups isn't cool.