Los Angeles-Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney may have bigger problems than trying to sway Hispanic voters to look his way. Now, after a damming secret tape was recently released and disbursed to the media where Romney comes off as an arrogant ruler overseeing his destined peasants, the Republican presidential candidate has to show he is indeed for the people and not above the people, including the very individuals he came to speak to in Los Angeles.
Romney came to Los Angeles to draw in the Hispanic vote for the upcoming November presidential election. His main appearance was speaking in front of hundreds of Hispanic business leaders at the 33rd United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Convention at the JW Marriott in downtown Los Angeles.
However, whatever goodwill Romney may stacked up with a perceived genuine and well-articulated speech at the USHCC invitation only luncheon to Hispanic business leaders may have just been wiped out by comments he made at a Republican fundraiser in this past May that nearly half of Americans “believe that they are victims” and “who are dependent on government,” according a video recording released by Mother Jones.
In regards to the speech itself before the fallout from the released video, Romney appeared to have hit the marks he set in front of influential Hispanic leaders, generating sporadic applause throughout his sharply-detailed presentation. Given about a 20-minute platform to speak after a video of President Barack Obama addressed the attendees, Romney provided some good sound bites for the horde of media covering the event.
Much like the snazzy suit he was wearing, Romney’s speech was polished, bold in statement and well-delivered. Romney kept it sweet and simple as he spoke about the usual talking points of immigration reform, what he would do to fix the economy, improving the job market, blasting President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act and downsizing useless government programs. It sounded like a page written right out of the GOP script of the past four years.
But to his credit, Romney gave a passionate speech to the Hispanic business community that felt believable. But there were times during the speech Romney sounded more like he was trying to perfect rehearsal on his one-liners in preparation for his debates against President Obama. Whether it was good politics or simply pandering to the audience he was speaking to, Romney spoke on point to the issues he wanted to address.
“I am convinced that the Republican Party is the rightful home for Hispanic Americans,” Romney said. “Our leaders in Washington have failed to produce a real recovery. No one is exempt from the pain of this economy, of course, but the Hispanic community has been particularly hard hit. While the national unemployment rate is 8.1 percent, the Hispanic unemployment, as you know, is at 10.1 percent. Over two million more Hispanics are living in poverty today than the day President Obama took office.”
From the outset of his speech, Romney tackled the subject of the nation’s economic recovery, but failed to mention the auto industry bailout or the near apocalyptic crashing of the country’s financial system that would put the United States in a much more severe recession than was experienced in the last five years. Romney did, however, lay out a five-point plan he believes can be the solution in bringing the country’s economic recovery in full growth, including cutting the deficit, bringing back more manufacturing jobs and expanding our nation’s trade agreements with other countries.
“My plan is premised on the condition that it is freedom that drives our economy, that free people, creating free enterprise is what creates good jobs with good wages,” Romney said. “Government supports good job creators but it cannot take their place.”