From The Guardian:
One of the fiercest races in next month’s midterm elections has turned ugly, with the Nevada senator Harry Reid accusing his Republican challenger, Sharron Angle, of encouraging a TV advert that tries to persuade Hispanics not to vote.
The Spanish-language ad was pulled from TV stations yesterday following an outcry. It said: “Don’t vote this November. This is the only way to send them a clear message – you can no longer take us for granted.”
Angle’s camp denied any connection to the ad, saying she encouraged as many Nevadans as possible to vote. The ad was placed by Robert de Posoda, president of Latinos for Reform.
Angle, a darling of the Tea Party movement, was the surprise winner of the Republican nomination and has gone on to give Reid a tougher race than expected. Her extreme positions, including favouring the privatisation of social security and allowing the dumping of nuclear waste in Nevada, have made her a bogey figure of the left but endeared her to rightwing voters disillusioned by the local economic crisis. Nevada has the highest unemployment and foreclosure rates in the country.
In addition to the furore over the TV ad, Angle got into deep water this week for telling a group of Hispanic schoolpupils: “Some of you look a little more Asian to me.”
Barack Obama said De Posoda’s ad was “terrible”. “It is a cynical political ploy to try to drive Latino votes to benefit a Republican candidate in Nevada who would never vote for immigration reform,” the president said.
From Mario Solis-Marich at THE HUFFINGTON POST:
Robert Deposada has sold out his community. Deposada, a GOP operative from the failed Bush Presidency, crossed a critical line this week by developing and placing ads urging Latino voters to stay home and not vote during this important election cycle. The ads are not only despicable in purpose but they are abhorrent in execution. Not since La Malinche, the infamous traitor in Mexican history who used a combination of her language skills and let’s say “bedside manner” to help conquer the Aztecs, has there been such a blatant and cynical transaction as the one between consultant Deposada and the GOP. Like La Malinche, Deposada is using his language skills and his ability to bed down with those that despise his community to make some hard cash and improve his personal fortunes.
The Republicans, aided by their translator Deposada, have decided that instead of correcting the failure of their candidates and their party to attract Latino voters it is easier and faster to beg folks to stay home. The tactic is beneath contempt, wholly un-American, and very anti-Latino.
Latino voter registration and outreach has always been a priority of progressive Latinos. The leading Hispanic voter education projects, while nonpartisan, have been consistently led by the Latino left. Latino conservatives have never engaged in wide scale Latino voter registration preferring that others roll up their sleeves while they sit comfortably in the beltway. It has always been speculated that the emergence of Latino voter activity would be to the determent of the conservative movement and this direct attempt to ask those voters to stay home is proof positive that the right believes the speculation to be accurate.
Deposada and his cohorts are from the family tree of George Bush and other politicians who are devoted to securing power not through action and empowerment but by trickery. The Bush political family finds it easy to spoil the hard labor of others having never engaged in it themselves. Like his political parents Deposada cannot truly appreciate the work he is attacking.
This is not to say that the Democratic Party does not need to step up their Latino game. Honest criticism of the relationship between the Democratic Party and Hispanics is valid and valuable and in fact the competition for voters is essential to democracy. However, asking key constituencies to stay home is not valuing competition at all.
Some say that Deposada is not a threat as much as he is a beltway political hit man with a small contract. But we all must remember that any GOP gains this tactic is tied to will lead to more of the same in future elections. La Malinche succeeded in helping Cortez destroy the Aztecs because they trusted her. La Malinche spoke more than the Aztec language she learned their dialects — she spoke to their frustrations and fears, and skillfully delivered them to their conquest. Hopefully, the Latino voters of Nevada will be more judicious about the messengers they listen to and the envoys that they trust.
Watch the Spanish version of the video at THE HUFFINGTON POST link, and then watch Lawrence O’Donnell take this dipshit apart, as well as see the English version of the ad at MSNBC.
From THINK PROGRESS:
Earlier today, ThinkProgress reported that Latinos for Reform — a Republican 527 group — purchased an $80,000 buy on Univision to air ads urging Nevada Latino voters not to vote. We urged Univision not to air the ads. The network, which heads the non-partisan Latino civic participation campaign, Ya Es Hora, has decided to do the right thing and not broadcast the ads.
ThinkProgress did some digging into de Posada’s group, and here’s what we found.
To begin with, the group’s 8872 form lists the same P.O. Box number as the one belonging to the Admiral Roy F. Hoffmann Foundation, an organization founded by the chairman of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (SBVT), Roy F. Hoffmann. For those who don’t recall, SBVT was another 527 group formed during the 2004 elections aimed at opposing Sen. John Kerry’s (D-MA) presidential bid by distorting and misrepresenting his war record.
De Posada told Talking Points Memo the address was a “mistake”: “In 2008, because the laws were so strange, we hired a political compliance company that handled our reporting and accounting.”
The connection doesn’t stop at a P.O. Box. Latinos for Reform, the Hoffmann Foundation, and SBVT have all employed the services of the same consulting firm, Political Compliance Services. Susan Arceneaux, a “long time aide of Dick Armey” heads the company. The firm markets itself as “an accounting services vendor specializing in FEC regulations. Our comprehensive approach to your individual accounting needs will deliver you from the headaches and legal ramifications of FEC non-compliance.” Latinos for Reform hasn’t filed anything with the IRS since April 2, 2009.
Latinos for Reform’s post-election 2008 report also lists an expenditure of $1,203 that went towards Paul Sullivan & Associates, a law firm recommended by the Republican National Lawyers Association (RNLA).
Finally, John T. Finn, who donated a total of $70,000 to Latinos for Reform, is listed as a “Producer & publisher” on the group’s contribution form. However, the address attached to his name also belongs to Pro-Life America and Lovematters.com.