Secretary Salazar focuses on energizing Hispanics
April 5th, 2012
05:17 PM ET
3 years ago

Secretary Salazar focuses on energizing Hispanics

Los Angeles (CNN) - Given the growing influence of the Hispanic vote, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar tried Thursday to seize on the increasingly pivotal role they will likely play in helping President Barack Obama's re-election prospects.

During a White House Hispanic Community Action Summit in Los Angeles, Salazar acknowledged the relative slow pace of economic recovery but emphasized that the nation's steady job growth is benefitting Hispanics across a broad spectrum of economic areas.

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"Four million jobs have been created in this country over the last several years, the last three months have seen job growth in the private sector of over 200,000 jobs a month and we are on the way back," Salazar said during a news conference.

According to the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, Latino owned businesses generated $350 billion in revenue over the past five years, a 55% increase.

But the gravity of the economic recession among Hispanics is reflected in Department of Labor statistics which show the Hispanic unemployment rate at 10.7%. Voter turnout, particularly in the Southwest, is likely to play a crucial factor in the president's re-election strategy in November.

With a population of 54 million, disaffection among Hispanic voters remains high, especially on key issues like job creation, immigration reform and education. Salazar said he hoped to change those sentiments.

"When President Obama became president of the United States, we had gone to the point where the United States of America had fallen into what was going to be the second great depression," Salazar said.

"We know we came out of a ditch but we feel good about where we are and we recognize, the president recognizes, that we still have a long ways to go," he said.

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Filed under: 2012 • Ken Salazar • Latinos • President Obama
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    The Democrat messaqg is very simple: USA citizenship For Sale. Vote for a Democrat and they'll give you amnesty and citizenship free. And tell all your relatives they can also come here and get free citizenship, just remember that vote for us condition. I believe the word to destribe this is corruption.

    April 5, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  2. Dave

    Arizona us DEFINENITLY in play for this administration. However, With hardcore votin Repressing new stae Id laws, It problaby go Romneys way. He is doing everything in his power to CHEAT. yep you heard me. He knows this state is 50/50 without these Romney / Gop made up laws that make it difficult for some Hispanics to cast thier voice / vote. He is truely a NON – American plastic human being when it comes to a level playing field. This is not China or Iran, Mitt Blows!!!

    April 5, 2012 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  3. Hopeful

    Truth and Nothing But the Truth...........Such a simplistic and stupid comment. None of your comments are truthfull nor are they believed by any of us. Stop wasting your time, it's just not working. Much like your GOP party

    April 5, 2012 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  4. Mikey

    @Truth – The vision of Liberals, going back to the Founders, has been to promote self determination, a wide voting franchise, opportunity for all to succeed based on hard work and talent, regardless of ethnicity, race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, the right for everyone to pursue happiness, that with rights and priviledges comes responsibility, that freedom has some limits when one persons freedom infringes on that of another, that while everyone is free to pursue wealth, it sould not come through doing harm in taking advantage of the less fortunate (fair dealing), that those who have benefited the most from our society have the greatest responsibility to contribute, that the playing field should be level to the greatest extent practical, that war should be a last resort and the costs of war to individuals and our society should be weighed carefully, that our Government represents ALL THE PEOPLE EQUALLY, not the wealthy and powerful few at the expense of the majority. I could go on, but I think you get the message.

    It seems you see the world much differently.

    April 5, 2012 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "The Democrat messaqg is very simple: USA citizenship For Sale. Vote for a Democrat and they'll give you amnesty and citizenship free. And tell all your relatives they can also come here and get free citizenship, just remember that vote for us condition. I believe the word to destribe this is corruption."

    Sorry, but the reality is this: the GOP/Teatrolls have done more to encourage hispanic voters to vote for Dems over the past 50 years than anything specific that the Dems have done. When confronted with massive tectonic shifts in the demographic makeup of the country, the GOP/Teatrolls has consistently and unabashedly chosen wrong. The right answer was to court them. Instead, you've done nothing but alienate them. Three cheers for conservative myopia!

    April 5, 2012 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  6. Dave

    Can a draft dodger get all up in Arizona & REPRESS the hispanic vote. Its the only way Mitt has a snowballs chance in hell.

    April 5, 2012 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  7. Mikey

    @Sniffit – Many Conservatives cannot help themselves. Their selfishness, narrowmindedness, and distain for those different than them just comes through. It is impossible to hide for very long.

    April 5, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  8. DEcember 2012

    So is USA citizenship for sale or not? Make up your mind.

    Here's a clue for you who are lucky enough to be born citizens: immigration (legal or not) is never free and the path to citizenship is very expensive. It is very easy for those who have not had to sacrifice anything for their status to look down upon the very people this country is founded on.

    April 5, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  9. kayla

    i have cousins who are democrats, they voted for ronald reagan when he gave them amnesty, those are the reagan democrats that youn hear about today. they only voted for reagan because he gave them amnesty.

    April 5, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  10. cali girl

    Truth, Apparently you forget how you got here, like we all came from some other place before our ancestors made the journey.

    April 5, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  11. Dave

    Yo mitt , Hispanics are NOT williams sonoma data. You could give them all the majic underwear in the world, but they still aint votin for your slandering Sotomoyer self.

    April 5, 2012 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  12. Dave

    If elected, I willard will give every American a VOUCHER for an elevator for their car!!!

    April 5, 2012 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  13. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Sniffit - Sorry, but the reality is this: the GOP/Teatrolls have done more to encourage hispanic voters to vote for Dems over the past 50 years than anything specific that the Dems have done.
    ================================================================================================
    You mean like defend our borders against an onslaught of illegal immigration that has nearly bankrupted many states?

    When confronted with massive tectonic shifts in the demographic makeup of the country, the GOP/Teatrolls has consistently and unabashedly chosen wrong.
    ====================================================================================================
    You mean do like the Democrats do and offer amnesty so tens of millions more can flood into the country?

    The right answer was to court them. Instead, you've done nothing but alienate them.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Yes, as I said, Democrats do court them with free citizenship promises, which they can never fulfill, just like many of their ridiculous promises to help the black community.

    Three cheers for conservative myopia!
    ================================
    Yes, believing that our borders should be protected and defended and that people that break the laws of this country should NOT be rewarded is "myopic". Sorry but we believe in the rule of law, not mob rule.

    April 5, 2012 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  14. Myviewis

    Unfortunately, the population of 54 million is mainly Mexican and it is hard for Mexicans to get out of unemployment because they lack skills, language, parental guidance and especially since most Americans think that companies that hire these illegal immigrants should be punished. These Hispanics Salazar is focusing on are Mexicans, Dominicans and Cubans. There are very little Argentinians, Costa Ricans, Chileans, Uruguayans and other Latin Americans in the USA. The main focus is Mexican.

    April 5, 2012 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  15. 1twinsfan

    The GOP message to Hispanics – Get out, go back to your own country! Oh, you were born here? Your family is from Santa Fe? (under breath to aide "is that in the US?") Well, then, if you're a citizen, will you vote for me?

    April 5, 2012 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  16. FIELD1stSGT

    Don't be fooled Hispanics. I was a Democrat for 50 years. until I realized their anti-Christian, Anti Catholic and only will make promises to you that they do not intend to keep. If you believed in Obama, ask yourself what hhas he done for you in the last four years. NOTHING.

    April 5, 2012 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  17. Slightly Left of Center

    @ truthless and nothing BUTT
    ...And tell all your relatives they can also come here and...blah, blah, blah.

    Does this sound familiar?
    Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses, yearning to breath free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
    Send these, the homeless, tempest tossed,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door.

    You can shut up now.

    April 5, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  18. Showmeyerpapers

    No I D ? NO BALLOT! What qualifies ranchero jackpot baby salazar to be sec of interior? Maybe its his 2nd grade education or his boxarocks i q. Maybe its his devastatingly bad looks. Dude's a loon, inbred. The supreme court will uphold the states arizona style invader laws nationwide. Mayas well pack up the minivans

    April 5, 2012 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  19. Showmeyerpapers

    Not only have illegal invaders slit the throats of the working man they are responsible for 75% of the crime here in denver radioreference dot com monitor police and ems frequencies for yourself they must have killed 250000Americans in the last 50 years look at lapd online all most wanted 95% spanic. I knew newt was the sh samich. I dont care if an illegal sailed with washington , REMOVE THEM! The states want the laws ENFORCED PERIOD! Theyll bankrupt EVERY STATE! LOOK AT CALIFORNIA FOR GOD SAKE! Mehico is a cultural catastrophe and our govt has helped them spread their societal ills across our great nation. We would have the highest standard of living on earth if it wasnt for the constant stranglehold on our economy due to the invasion and occupation of our soverign land. Look noone wants to break up families just be sure to get them all on the same bus with the anchor offspring seated up front. What about all the american families torn apart by the federal invasion policy in effect. The

    April 5, 2012 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  20. Showmeyerpapers

    Sheriff JOE for PRESIDENT!

    April 5, 2012 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  21. Darrell

    Truth and Nothing But the Truth (also known as, Bull and Nothing But the Bull)....Dude, most times I laugh at your comments because they are often too funny to take seriously.

    Yet, you failed to acknowledge, because you are void of the facts, that Ronald Reagan signed into law, the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, amnesty for illegal immigrants.

    Next time come straight with the facts or don't come at all.

    April 6, 2012 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
  22. Marlee

    Greedy men lure the immigrant labor and then want to keep them less then citizens to exploit them. With the war on drugs and all the civilian casualities and government corruption it is no wonder people seek a better life in America.

    April 6, 2012 07:20 am at 7:20 am |
  23. Rudy NYC

    Truth and Nothing But the Truth wrote:

    The Democrat messaqg is very simple: USA citizenship For Sale.
    -------------–
    Uh, uh. Both Bush administrations opened the flood gates of illegal immigrants in this country over the objections of the Democrats. Look at the I-9 Form, which is collected by the IRS. Republicans viewed immigrants as a cheap, union busting labor force.

    Bush-41 passed legislation that said it was a burden on the IRS, and so employers no longer needed to send it in. Just keep it on file in the event that INS showed up. Bush-43 and his Republican Congress passed legislation that declared eimployers only needed to keep the form on file for just 3 years.

    April 6, 2012 07:33 am at 7:33 am |
  24. Steve-Illinois

    Hispanics! Get in line to vote for Obama! Never mind him throwing that Hispanic from Florida under the bus without having any information about what happened! Never mind the promises he made in 2008 that he just hasn't had the time to bother with 3 years later! Just believe what he tells you now!

    April 6, 2012 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  25. Donna

    GOP lost the Latino Vote even before Rubio came along to try to help Mitt-Etch !

    April 6, 2012 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
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