By Javier Rodriguez from Juarez, Mexico 5 September 2012
During the intense campaign for the passage of President Obama’s Health Care Reform in 2009-10, I attended a rally in the City of Alhambra, California, sponsored by the area’s liberal congressman and it was a learning experience. Although there were at, least 4 thousand people, the majority who supported the reform, there was a loud obscene, “no reform minority” of about 3-4 hundred Tea Party Republicans present, who were aggressively vulgar and offensive, almost physical at times, even to female seniors and the disabled on wheel chairs. And of course they showed a disdainful racial overtone to the middle class Latinos present labeling them as “ignorants.” But the most distinguishing characteristic of their blinded and racial ultra conservative attacks was surrealistically against Obama, labeling him a “socialist.” Although it would be a grand development for this president to expound real progressive economic, political, social and ideological principles, recall that the unfounded charge was the battle cry that resonated nationally in all Tea Party public events. Essentially, in my role there as an independent journalist, upon engaging pockets of the overwhelming white activists, what I picked up then was a virulent mean streak demeanor that took no prisoners: men, women, children, Mexicans, blacks, etc.
That repugnant republican mentality, which includes the neo-softened Romney in the home stretch towards the November presidential election, reared its ugly head once again this year and the whole country saw it in full display, during the White people’s Republican Convention, when the African American CNN camera woman was entering the convention floor and several white delegates threw peanuts at her and with blatant racism told her, “this is how we feed our animals…..” Then came the Mother Jones secret video of the Romney speech at a well to do republican private fundraiser, where he referred to the poor and everyone else who depends on government in one way or another as “the 47% that will only vote for the president.” Ironically, in his blanket characterization of the 150 million Americans as government recipients, in others words as they say in Mexico, “political clienteles,” the multimillionaire excluded himself and the 588,000 US millionaires and billionaires who make up the real 0.1% American ruling class, who historically have been sucking the tits of the people’s taxes and the US Treasury, monstrously enriching themselves at the government’s expense. From what I perceived of what he meant in plain Empire talk, the 47% can be construed as the colored people, primarily blacks and Latinos, the white poor, former middle class members and the unemployed, which in the context of the present class war, it can be summarized as” vintage class prejudice.”
It’s obvious where I’m going with this introduction. President Obama is still the hope of the once enslaved African American electorate, who on November 6 is poised to reelect him, at an astronomical 95% of their vote. The same can be said for the growing and important Latino population and its vote. The polls in the last two weeks indicate the latter are undeniably moving towards a national voting record for a democratic presidential candidate, and it may surge above 80%. This tendency is not new. In 2008 there were many Latino majority districts in several parts of the country who surpassed the customary 2 to 1 ratio, skyrocketing way above the figure cited. For this sector who makes up 50.3 million of the total population in America, what is at stake today is “not just a few districts, but rather the general Latino national vote and the indisputable fact that this block is once again positioned to be one of the key determinant factors for another democratic victory.” Add to this the strong inclination of women voters, which, during the debate was continuously manifested on Twitter, and moreover the almost unconditional support of labor and the fast moving student and youth vote and the winning formula can be easily discerned.
When Republican Romney accepted the President’s statement that Obama Health Reform was based in general terms on the success of the Massachusetts’s Health Reform orchestrated by him, he astutely retorted “it was done with a bipartisan approach in direct contrast to you how you approached it Mr. President……” What was Obama thinking when he gratuisly handed him the point on a silver platter, without the expected punch line. He could have at least set him up and finished the point with “then you’re also a socialist Mr. Governor, a conservative Republican socialist.”
However wishful, from the start it was obvious the adrenalin was missing when he addressed the First Lady on their wedding anniversary. The conveyed message of apology, humor and the smile appeared dry and expedient; there was no romantic poetry in the President’s eyes which would have gone a long way to set the mood in his favor. At 70, the late Ronald Reagan, a professional actor, was better at that at being an illusionist.
Instead of putting away the contender and nailing the coffin early, the President gave the republican much needed political oxygen. Fortunately the damage repair and strategical surgery are fast on the move, especially on the expressed lies and hypocritical statements of the republican candidate. Barack Obama should transcend the so called “presidential stature” which in reality is nothing else an imposed conduct on US politicians the corporate mega media. He should take his coat of on stage, roll up his sleeves and go after the Republican jugular.
If the President does not convince and handily defeats the ultra conservative republican Romney in the next debate, the people and sectors cited earlier in this piece, which can make his reelection possible, may have to say goodbye to Obama’s health reform which is about to benefit millions of people. The same for comprehensive immigration reform and legalization for the masses of immigrants without papers for the next ten years under a republican administration. As well, the country may see the cancellation of the deferred action executive protection order known as DACA, that is now in process of registering an estimated 1.8 million young undocumented high school and college-university students, amongst many other issues.
Javier Rodriguez is an independent journalist and a media and political strategist. He is now on his third trip thru Mexico begun on March 2 of this year, observing and writing about Mexico’s political process, the aftermath of a highly questioned presidential election, the drug war and migrants. A long time social activist, he was the initiator and directed the making of the 1.7 MILLION historical immigration march in Los Angeles on March 25, 2006 as well as the May 1st 2006 Great American Boycott. Blog Larayueladejavier.wordpress.com firstname.lastname@example.org.