In the News

With Huntsman gone, the GOP has said good-bye to an important potential bridge into the Hispanic community. With options dwindling, a Vice-President Marco Rubio could be the GOP’s best option in a sea of dwindling opportunities.

Voter ID Laws

My work with Matt Barreto of the University of Washington, Seattle and Gabriel Sanchez of the University of New Mexico is cited in this post on Voter ID laws.  Our research suggests minorities would be disproportionately affected by voter ID laws.  This blog argues that voter suppression, not electoral security, is the main intention of the laws.

Let’s be humane: Republican rhetoric on immigration reform and voter opinion


The data from Latino Decisions and past surveys indicate that a humane approach to immigration is not only a better short term political strategy, but demographic shifts in the electorate present a compelling argument that a humane approach is a better long term strategy as well – for both political parties.

Guest blog post on Latino Rebels


My post on Latino Rebels is up.  Thanks to Julio Ricardo Varela for the invitation.

The mixed messaging coming from the Party with the announcement of Kobach’s endorsement demonstrates a decided lack of consciousness about the sentiments of Latinos. Perhaps Inclán can change that. She will need to work hard to gain the trust of Hispanics rather than just repeat the Party line.  Whether or not the GOP will allow her to do that is another question.

In the News

Stephen Nuño, a political science professor at Northern Arizona University, comments anything Republican can do “to disassociate themselves with a ‘negative’ brand may have some impact in the short term,” but he adds that “a long term strategy will have to go beyond putting lipstick on a pig.”

“AZ Racist Girls”- Mea Culpa

Well, good for them.  Not unlike adults, teenagers are impressionable people and can be easily influenced to say stupid things.  It was a mistake, but they owned up to it, assuming these are the same girls.  Perhaps this is a genuine apology and they will truly learn from it, perhaps its just a case of them getting caught.  Its not easy admitting you did something stupid.  People mess up and are not always willing to own up to it. I am reminded by a recent event where an adult failed to take responsibility for his actions, State Representative Scott Bundgaard.

Scott Bundgaard finally got a chance to tell his side of the story.

And, in a way, he did. Facing censure, or perhaps even expulsion, by his state Senate colleagues for his role in a violent fight last winter with his girlfriend on a freeway, Bundgaard was moments away on Friday from testifying in his Senate Ethics Committee hearing.

Rather than testify, he walked out of the hearing room for lunch and never came back. Instead of clearing the air, he left it to his attorney to announce he had resigned his seat in the Legislature.

Perhaps the grown-ups can learn something here, too. Peace.

The Justice Coin has come out with a commemorative coin to mark the killing of Osama bin Laden. I’m reminded by the words of a good friend who lost his brother in the 9-11 attacks and what he said about retribution and closure following the death of Osama bin Laden.

The whole issue of closure means everything to others and trivia to us. To those who were stung by the attacks, but not necessarily struck by it, bin Laden’s death finally gives them their pride of settlement, of control, of eye-for-eye justice. Even Jesus be cool with that.

Well we the people, we got our man. We retook control and showed ‘em who’s boss.  I suppose that passes for “closure.” ‘Twas the one thing we all ever really wanted, and the only thing I’ll never ever get.

I thankfully wasn’t directly touched by the attacks, but I knew more than a few friends who were and I know that certainly many American and non-American lives have been impacted in ways that cannot be undone since then. I certainly don’t weep for bin Laden, I feel better he is no longer with us, but commemorating his death with a coin seems so jingoistically trite. I don’t know. Perhaps a scalp or an earlobe next time, so we can hang around our necks. For all to see. The suggested retail price for the coin is $100 dollars, but if you act fast, it can be yours for just $19.95.  Perhaps a commemoration of values not quite intended, but communicated to all loud and clear.


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