As President Obama addressed one of the nation’s leading Latino civil rights organizations Monday, the campaign of GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney took at swipe at the president’s record, saying Obama has “failed the Hispanic community.”
Latinos have become an increasingly crucial constituency in presidential campaigns as the nation’s fastest-growing ethnic group. Obama spoke Monday to a conference of the National Council of La Raza, the latest in a series of steps to reach out to the Latino community. Last month, he became the first president since John F. Kennedy to visit the island of Puerto Rico.
Before that, the president gave a major immigration speech at the border of the United States and Mexico.
The campaign of Romney, the nominal Republican front-runner and former Massachusetts governor, didn’t let the latest outreach go uncommented on.
Citing a rise in the unemployment rate among Latinos since Obama took office, the Romney campaign said the president “has failed Hispanic Americans on jobs.”
[Updated, 4:20 p.m., July 25: Ricardo A. Ramírez, a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, responded that "if Mitt Romney had anything credible to say about the president’s record, or his own record, on Hispanic issues" that he would have attended the conference himself instead of issuing a news release.]