Presidential Polls 2012: Romney Appears Tanned on Univision Hoping to Close Latino Gap


Mitt Romney added insult to injury Wednesday in an interview with Spanish speaking news channel Univision. In the now infamous 47% speech, Romney insulted the Latino community by saying to his predominately white audience, “It would be helpful to be Latino.” Romney went on to further insult his father’s heritage and Mexican people by saying, "had [my father] been born of Mexican parents, I'd have a better shot of winning this. But he was unfortunately born to Americans living in Mexico."

So this explains Romney’s poor showing in the Hispanic community where he is polling at 26%. It is not his policies on immigration where he rejects the Dream Act and favors “self-deportation” of 12 million Hispanic immigrants, it is the “unfortunate” choice of his grandparents who chose American citizenship for his father.

What makes this all the more insulting is that Romney’s father is technically Mexican. His father was born in Colonia Dublán in Galeana in the state of Chihuahua and according to Mexican naturalization laws; individuals born in Mexican territory regardless of the nationality of their parents are Mexican. That makes Romney half Mexican.

Romney is beginning to show a strange psychological pattern regarding his father. He claims to admire him, but he refuses to follow his standard on releasing tax returns, he insults his father’s humble beginnings, when the government created a special entitlement program for Mormons and now he insults his heritage. Romney may want to look into that pattern if he wants to be president. Maybe Dinesh D’Souza is available.

Hispanic leaders took umbrage to Romney’s comments. Fox News reported that Rep. Xavier Becerra, (D-Calif.) told the Associated Press in Spanish, "The insult of all insults, Mitt Romney says if he was Latino he would win the presidential election, as if being Latino would have given him any advantage to win the White House. I have news for Mr. Romney: it has nothing to do with your ethnic origin, it has to do with your values." 

Fox News Latino reported that rising Hispanic star, Republican Governor Susana Martinez, “distanced herself from Romney’s comments.” Martinez said "It doesn't matter what economic level you come from (or) what kind of jobs you have, I urge everyone that 47 percent, the middle class and the upper class to all get out on Election Day." reported that Romney’s problems with the Latino community have nothing to do with his heritage. It has to do with his repeated pattern of pandering to his audience and his inability to provide detail of his immigration plan. The online news website said, “Romney has been largely inconsistent on immigration stances, except to assert his unnamed plan will be much better than Obama’s. On amnesty, Romney’s been for and against. His views on the DREAM Act have similarly changed, depending on the audience. No matter how Latino friendly his plans are or aren’t, his party platform and VP choice propose shipping everyone without documents home, no matter the circumstances.”

On Wednesday, Romney sunk to a new low of pandering for votes. In an interview with Spanish speaking news channel Univision Romney appeared in what seemed to be a cheap sprayed on tan. Romney pulled a John Boehner and appeared in “brown-face” on the interview program. reported it this way, “Did Mitt Romney seriously just wear brown makeup so Latin voters might think he's tan enough to support?” HuffPo was kinder and said, “his orangey-brown appearance on Univision could have been the result of bad lighting or a makeup mishap.”   HuffPo reported that the Twitter-verse took notice. One tweet said, "Will Romney put on blackface to talk to African Americans and War paint for Native Americans?" Another said, "Is the same person in charge of speech writing, chair dialogue, messaging & specifics (that don't exist) also doing makeup?"

Meanwhile, Fox News reported that Univision veteran journalists Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas pressed for details on what Romney has vowed would be a permanent solution to the flawed immigration system. In an all too familiar pattern (see Meet the Press interview) Romney refused to provide any. Fox said “Romney, offered few details about certain aspects of his plans, despite the hosts' persistence.” Romney was repeatedly asked if he specifically supported Obama’s policy of deferred action. Republicans have uniformly opposed the Obama policy but when pressed, Romney would not give a yes or no answer on whether he would keep the program. Romney has repeatedly flip flopped on any version of the Dream Act and in the past has promised to veto it if he becomes president.

Polling firm Latino Decisions reported that among Latino men, 61% plan to vote for Obama and 32% for Romney; Latina voters plan to vote for President Obama by a margin of 74% to 21%; and overall Obama holds 68% of the Latino vote to 26%. And this was before the Romney comments came out and his brown face appearance on Univision.

During the interview Romney tried to distance himself from his embarrassing remarks. He said, "My campaign is about the 100 percent in America." Fox News reported that he repeatedly tried to say he was joking when he made his comments about not being Latino. In a new ad released by the Libre Initiative, Fox reported that a Move on member responded by saying “We're not laughing, Gov. Romney."

CNN reported that Univision co-host Jorge Ramos, tried to throw Romney a life line with the audience by starting the interview with this question, he asked "With a father born in Mexico, are you sure you're not Latino?" The brown-faced Romney looked at his hosts and said, "I think for political purposes that might have helped me here at the University of Miami today."

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