June 14th, 2008
11:17 AM ET
7 years ago

Obama courts the Latino vote

,
 Sen. Barack Obama looks to win over Latino voters before November.
Sen. Barack Obama looks to win over Latino voters before November.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama, the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee for president, is looking to shore up support - especially from Latinos.

During the primaries on Super Tuesday, he received only 35 percent of Latinos' vote, while former rival Sen. Hilary Clinton's received 63 percent.

"There really wasn't an opportunity for Barack Obama to introduce himself to Latino voters.

"He needs to get out there and do that and he needs to listen to Latino voters and understand what they care about," said Arturo Vargas, of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials.

WATCH: The debate over immigration

Obama has supported President Bush-backed immigration legislation, which would have increased funding and improved border security technology, improved enforcement of existing laws, and provided a legal path to citizenship for some illegal immigrants.

The Illinois senator also voted to authorize construction of a 700-mile fence along the U.S.-Mexican border.

The Obama campaign said in a statement: "It's not that we will grant citizenship, but we strongly support requiring them to legalize their status and allowing them to earn their right to commit to this country and eventually become citizens."

Full story


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Latinos
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. km

    All the stupid government has to do is start fining the companies who hire illegal immigrants and giving jail time to repeat offenders...and the problem would disappear. I welcome legal immigrants....but they cost these companies more....and may just force them to pay a living wage which would benefit all Americans.

    June 14, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  2. Frank

    Latinos are much smarter than many Whites and Blacks in this country and they will not fall for the empty promisses of an inexperienced racist black man! Just watch and learn!!!!

    June 14, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  3. jimmy velman

    NOT A CHANCE . NOT BY A LONG SHOT.

    June 14, 2008 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  4. BILL

    "He needs to get out there and do that and he needs to listen to Latino voters and understand what they care about,"

    They might want to know why he did not vote for a latino Supreme Court Judge.

    Obama: The 2nd Carter Term.

    June 14, 2008 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  5. Loretta from California

    and I applaud this effort, but I'm not sure he'll be successful, not without Senator Clinton.

    June 14, 2008 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  6. rachel

    There was plenty of time in New Mexico, and Puerto Rico, but in Puerto rico his just took their money then went on vacation.

    June 14, 2008 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  7. Debby

    Maybe he can send Richardson out again he really does well with Latino's just look at Puerto Rico. LOL

    June 14, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  8. LaurieG

    Obama supported BUSH-backed immigration legislation!! Wow!! Wasn't that legislation called MCCAIN-Kennedy, and got McCain into trouble with conservatives? This is such a strange world. Why didn't Obama step forward and sponsor bills to help Latinos?

    Bush has been a huge friend to Latinos, beating back efforts of conservatives to round up Latinos and throw them out of the country. McCain sponsored legislation to help keep Latinos in this country. And Obama has been bashing Bush and McCain? Maybe Obama should eat crow and say Bush and McCain were right on this one. But if Obama wants support of Latinos, maybe he should not have voted to build that fence on the Mexican border. Maybe Obama should build his fence on the Canadian border.

    June 14, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  9. Venus

    Go get em' Bam!

    June 14, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  10. Carmen, Ret Vet Florida

    My families and friends are not voting for you. You are just like Bush arrogant, inexperience,cold,out of touch with reality. With a name like
    " HUSSEIN" and wife that after forty something years now six months ago she feels like an american. What is wrong with this picture?. How could anyone with those sentiments go to the White House?. Are you taking your other antiamericans like Rev. Wright too?.

    June 14, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  11. Proud American

    Lets Go Dems!!!

    June 14, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  12. JRod

    Oh, here comes suck up time. Obama votes to build a 700 mile fence along the US-Mexican border and now he wants Latinos to support him? A path to citizenship? Once Obama gets Latino votes in November he will forget all about us. His core constituency has been all about Latino bashing in the inner cities for years. They blame Latinos for coming here and doing jobs Americans won't do. After he gets elected, Obama will throw Latinos on the bus back to Mexico and the DR, and won't care how many Latinos get run over by the bus.

    June 14, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  13. Charlotte

    He is courting and making promises he cannot keep. The President does not make the laws, he merely signs them into law. The congress makes the laws. The courts interpret the law. It is suppose to be a checks and balance form of government. This Congress has a lower rating then the President and as McCain said, " that means it is down to employees and relatives." We, the people, don't matter except at election time. Pandering is part of the game. I will write Hillary Clinton on my ballot in November, and for those that say it will be wasted, tell that to the people who wrote in FDR for a third term. He did not seek re-election and won anyway. That is why we now have a two term limit on the Presidency. If we all write her name on our ballots, she can win!

    June 14, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  14. Cynthia

    I think that Senator Obama should try and win over all voters regardless of what race. As I stated in an earlier blog I never understood why poor people vote Republican in the first place.

    June 14, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  15. Erick FL

    NO way... I'm from Miami & plenty of Hispanics here in South FL. Not 1 will vote for Obama. I know plenty of Hispanics & blv me, not oven 1 of my hispanics peers will vote for Obama including myself.
    McCain 08 & Hilary 12

    June 14, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  16. Fox

    Si se puede Obama!

    June 14, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  17. Will

    You know, supporting Bush's immigration policy, wanting to extend a version of his tax cuts, changing to a similar line on Cuba and Israel... Is it me, or is he starting to out- 'McSame' the other guy?

    June 14, 2008 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  18. After further review,Texas.

    Im against line jumpers at the movies,concerts,waiting for gas,the grocery store and to get into the country.I know a lot of good people that had to wait years to become good citizens.Go to the back of the line and wait like many from all over the world are doing.

    June 14, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  19. DEMOCRAT FOR MCCAIN

    as a hispanic...

    i will be voting for mccain for the first time in my life..voting republican

    we love the clintons and many of us are scarred as to how obama

    and his campaign treated hillary....and now that to embrace us

    its not if you win or lose, its HOW you play the game...and obama

    you are NOT THE NEW POLITICS....neither you, donna brazile,

    jack cafferty and your "independent" friend, roland martin and anderson cooper

    will change my mind...

    HISPANICS FOR MCCAIN 08

    June 14, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  20. Steve

    He has got my vote. I hope he puts a Hispanic on the ticket.

    June 14, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  21. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Politically speaking, I don't really understand the Latino voters. They seem to foster some kind of hate and anger which I feel is directed at the wrong people. The Latino community must have the right spokesperson in guiding and not misguiding Latinos so that the problems they face can honestly be addressed.

    June 14, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  22. Ilona Proud Canadian

    CNN,

    WHY SHOULD I LEAVE A COMMENT, WHEN YOU HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO RESPECT FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH, AND NO RESPECT FOR THOSE PEOPLE WHO REALLY TAKE THE TIME TO POST A WELL THOUGHT OUT NON-ABUSIVE COMMENT? YOU POST SO MUCH GARBAGE AND JUST ZAP OTHERS!

    June 14, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  23. Sharon Minnesota

    He's got a lot more than Latino's to get on board with him. He should just give it up. No more money, no more support for this loser.

    June 14, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  24. Iamamerican2

    GO GET 'EM!

    YES WE CAN!!!!

    June 14, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  25. Mimi De La Cruz for OBAMA

    LATINOS WILL VOTE FOR OBAMA BY A LANDSLIDE.

    WE ARE HURTING ECONOMICALLY LIKE ALL OTHER

    AMERICANS. WE PAY THE SAME PTICES FOR GAS & FOOD.

    WE ARE NOT GETTING DISCOUNTS FOR BEING LATINO.

    June 14, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
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