June 28, 2010


Obama's Latino Backlash: Hispanic voters are peeved about the president’s inaction on immigration reform. Just ask Univision anchor Jorge Ramos, who tells Bryan Curtis, “Obama broke a promise. It’s that simple.” (Bryan Curtis, 6/28/10, Daily Beast)

The one-year deadline expired in January, and Ramos went on the warpath. Armed with a new book, A Country for All: An Immigrant Manifesto, Ramos is the most prominent Hispanic voice inside or outside of politics to blast away at Obama for not keeping his word. “I believed him and millions of Latinos believed him,” Ramos said by phone from Miami.

“The fact is,” Ramos continues, his voice angry but restrained, “at this point, we can say Barack Obama broke a promise. It’s that simple. … We might have to wait years because that promise wasn’t kept.”

The silver-haired man delivering those words is the kind of critic the White House would be wise to pay attention to. For those who watch Spanish-language TV, Ramos is like an amalgam of Brian Williams and Keith Olbermann, though with more gravitas than either; Stephen Colbert once called Ramos “the most trusted name in news that I can’t understand.” Noticiero Univision, Ramos’ nightly newscast, draws an average of more than 2 million viewers. Ramos is a conduit between his Latino audience and politicians eager to schmooze with it. In 2007, when presidential candidates of both parties participated in the first debates broadcast exclusively in Spanish, it was Ramos and his Noticiero co-anchor, María Elena Salinas, who grilled them.

But Ramos, who is 52, is not merely a handsome face searching for airtime. “He’s not a pretty-boy, clothes-horse kind of anchor,” says Henry Cisneros, who was president of Univision from 1997 to 2000. Ramos is also a pungent editorialist, and stumping for immigration reform—what he calls the “new frontier in civil rights”—is his obsession. Night after night, speaking in Spanish, Ramos is a parallel universe Lou Dobbs.

...when the Evangelical at the top of the GOP ticket will support "reform."

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 28, 2010 6:14 AM
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