Bill Richardson: 70 Percent of Hispanics for Obama

Tuesday, 04 Nov 2008 01:01 PM

By Kenneth D. Williams

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New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson thinks that Obama will win New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado, with a huge majority of Hispanics voting for him.

“Senator Obama will win New Mexico narrowly, Colorado narrowly, Nevada … high proportion of Hispanic voters. My prediction is that between 65 and 70 percent of the Hispanic voters in those three states — and probably nationally — will go towards Senator Obama.”

Richardson said all the support for Obama “means there’s a new era of opportunity for the Democratic party in the Rocky Mountain West. I think that will be the decisive story in this election,” and that there will be more Hispanics than ever elected to Congress and to state posts because of the wide support for Obama.

MSNBC’s Chuck Todd said that President Bush and Karl Rove foresaw this problem, that if Hispanics became a base voting block for the Democrats, it would set the GOP back many years. So if that happens, what do Democrats have to do to keep Hispanics as a solid voting bloc?

The governor replied that “two issues are very important to Hispanics. One is education … the second is immigration reform. [Hispanics] want more security at the border, more legal immigration … and also a legalization plan, a path to citizenship.

“Senator McCain did have a very positive position on immigration reform, but then his Republican Party took away that card from him by appearing to be very restrictive on immigration … Senator McCain lost that Hispanic vote throughout the West, maybe even in his own state, because he appeared to cave in to hard-line Republican policies on immigration. That’s going to hurt him throughout the country. You’ll see large gains for Democrats in states with large Hispanic populations. I think that’s going to be one of the stories after tonight."

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