Friday, November 21, 2008

latino Americans rightfully skeptical of Obama cabinet picks

Latino leaders worry about lack of diversity in Obama cabinet so far. They should for a number of reasons. First of all, latinos were an important swing group in the 2008 election. Hillary Clinton won their votes overwhelmingly in the Democratic Primary, and John McCain had a good relationship as he was a Republican willing to work across party lines to include Latinos into the American fabric.

Yet, Obama won Latino votes easily, and reversed a slide that President Bush had encouraged towards Republicans from 2000 and 2004.

Also, Spanish speaking people are the fastest growing minority group. Their concerns should be more front and center than they are.

Right now it seems that only Bill Richardson is possible for a major cabinet position, and even he is an underdog to Hillary Clinton at the State Department.

Defense, State, and Attorney General are the top 3. Richardson is only qualified for State.

Obama by seeming to choose Clinton is now in trouble of ghettoizing the Latino community to secondary level choices.

Sure he may increase their numbers, and try to find a way to improve their power base, but unless they are one of the top 3, he will have a tough policial job of assuaging hurt feelings.

Policy-wise, Obama needs to be mindful of the cultural conservatism of Latinos, and their working-class needs.

Hopefully this will embolden Obama to stand up to the far-left on gay rights and be more mainstream.
My solution:

Place a top Latino as Deputy Homeland Securty Secretary under Gov. Napolitano.

Name Bill Richardson as Commerce Secretary with a special mandate to coordinate with business, homeland security, and the community to enact a comprehensive Immigration Law.

Name another latino leader as Labor Secretary.

Develop an agenda to promote speaking English as a way to prosper in mainstream society; enforce the borders strongly and do a compreshensive Immigration program; and work to find ways to strengthen the nuclear family through health care reform and tax cuts.

Craig Farmer
making the word "liberal" safe again!

No comments: