While Romney’s views on immigration are wildly popular with Americans, they are extremely unpopular with the Republican establishment sucking up to business interests — Bush, Rove, McCain, Huckabee, Perry, Gingrich, Giuliani, Krauthammer, Kristol, Gillespie, etc., etc.
(Maybe it’s the establishment that’s been calling Romney “establishment.”)
So now the elites are demanding that Romney “moderate” his position on immigration. To justify their underpaying the maid, they claim support for illegal immigration is crucial to victory! Obama’s ahead among Hispanics! How are you going to get the Hispanic vote? You’ve got to take Rubio as VP! And could somebody remind Esperanza to pick up little Chauncey from his play-date at 4:00 p.m.?
The truth is, a tough stance on illegal immigration can only help Romney, not only with the vast majority of Americans, but with any Latino voters who would ever possibly consider voting Republican in the first place.
As Romney said in one of the early debates, Republicans appeal to Latinos “by telling them what they know in their heart, which is they or their ancestors did not come here for a handout. If they came here for a handout, they’d be voting for Democrats. They came here for opportunity and freedom. And that’s what we represent.”
Romney crushed pro-amnesty Newt Gingrich in the Florida primary, winning a huge majority of that state’s substantial Hispanic population. And Gingrich promised Hispanics their own moon base!
Before the primary, Gingrich played up his support for amnesty, while accusing Romney of wanting to “round up” illegal alien grandmothers. The one thing every Florida primary voter knew was that Romney said he’d veto the Dream Act, giving citizenship to illegal alien children.
And then Romney won the primary with an even larger percentage of the Hispanic vote than Florida at large. Romney beat Gingrich statewide, 46 percent to 32. But among Latino voters, Romney routed Gingrich, 54 percent to 29 percent.
It’s not just Florida. In 2006, Arizona Hispanics supported four anti-illegal immigration propositions by 40 to 50 percent — which is a lot more than voted for pro-amnesty Republican presidential candidates John McCain or George W. Bush.
Among the propositions supported by Hispanics in larger numbers than they typically vote Republican was one making English the official language of Arizona (49 percent). As governor of Massachusetts, Romney pushed English-immersion programs. That’s my kind of Hispandering!
These are our Latinos — the ones, as Romney said, who came here for opportunity and freedom. Any race-mongering, welfare-collecting, ethnic-identity rabble-rousers are voting for the Democrat.
Ann Coulter is an author and political commentator.