The release of Mitt Romney’s first Spanish-language spot of the general election has some political observers scratching their heads because he vows to eliminate Obamacare, which is backed by a majority of Latino voters.
According to the Boston Globe
, a Romney ad running in Virginia appears to defy recent polls showing that at least 52 percent of Latino voters support the law and believe it will eventually lower healthcare costs. Other polls show that an even larger number of Latino voters believe it should not be repealed.
Matt A. Barreto — a political scientist and cofounder of the polling firm Latino Decisions — told the Globe it could be a risky move by Romney even though he labels Obamacare an expensive jobs killer and promises to replace it with a more affordable plan.
“The economy is a concern, but it does not absorb 100 percent of people’s attention span. They are thinking about a lot of other things, including healthcare,” he told the Globe.
“You’re already seeing the president use health care in his Spanish-language ads,” Barreto said, adding that the Obama campaign knows “that healthcare is an important issue and that Latinos care about it.”
The Globe noted that even some of Romney’s Latino supporters are urging the former Massachusetts governor to use more caution in his appeal to Latino voters.
“If he’s going out to the community and tells people he wants to repeal Obamacare, he needs to say what he’s going to replace it with,” Jennifer S. Korn, executive director of the Hispanic Leadership Council, told the Globe. “Otherwise, they are going to adopt the message from the Obama campaign — that the Republicans are going to take away the healthcare that we have.”
Valentina Weis, a spokesperson for the Romney campaign stressed in an email to the Globe, however, that the Romney campaign will continue to hammer away at Obamacare as bad for the economy and families struggling to find decent healthcare.
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