democratic strategy

Will Adding Gays to Immigration Reform Actually Increase Its Chances of Passing?

Joanna Burgos, a National Republican Campaign Committee spokeswoman, says Democrats like Illinois’ Rep. Luis Gutierrez would be smart to leave the gays out of their immigration reform if they have any hope of courting Hispanic votes, but what she meant to say is, “Run, Hispanics! These disgusting Democrats are trying to force the homosexual lifestyle down your throat!”

So far more than 100 House Dems (including Hispanics, notes Politico) have signed on to Gutierrez’s comprehensive immigration bill, introduced in December. Now a whole bunch of Democratic lawmakers are trying to get their friends to stand behind adding the Uniting American Families Act, which would let Americans sponsor same-sex foreign partners for immigration. But — scary! — we’re so close to November’s mid-term elections, and anything that mentions The Gays will scare off those Hispanic voters everyone is trying to court.

Which leads to Burgos saying things like, “If [Democrats are] trying to appeal to the Hispanic vote, gay marriage is not the right issue for their socially conservative values. I think it puts Democrats in Hispanic districts in an awkward position because they are very socially conservative.”

But with support stalled for his bill, Gutierrez is taking a different approach: Specifically targeting the gays to entice them into getting behind an immigration bill they might otherwise ignore, or believe they have less of horse in the race. Muy interesante!