It's not surprising that the essential futility of these guys comes out in Florida over immigration issues. The Republican party has had a good long run since Richard Nixon at being the bastion of frustrated white resentment, but their country is not the country we live in, in many places today and everywhere going forward. The country is changing.
Florida is one of the places where demographic shift is happening fast. According to the 2010 census, Florida's is about 58 percent white, 22 percent Hispanic/Latino of any race, and 16 percent Black. Unlike any other group of Latinos in the United States, Florida's Cuban immigrants tend to be Republicans, but these days they are more and more balanced out by Democratic-leaning Puerto Ricans, Mexican Americans and others from countries to the south.
Contemporary Republicans have nothing much to say to Latinos, aside from anti-Castro Cubans. Their white base won't let them deal sensibly with the fact of 11 million people who live here without papers. So we get the kind of nonsense Mitt and Newt traded tonight.
Today Markos Moulitas of Daily Kos, himself of Greek-Salvadoran ancestry and so quintessentially a modern citizen of the U.S., mocked the idea that Republicans were going to pick up Latino votes.
Note to discouraged white progressives: people of color have a lot of experience with making disheartening lesser evil choices. For most of U.S. history, that's all that was on offer -- none of the available politicians really represented them. Grown ups make the best of bad choices -- and then know that political participation doesn't end when the election is over. Why sometimes, people have to go on to Occupy ...