Perry’s Tuition Stance Makes Him the Only Electable Candidate - Page 2
This brings us to the premise, has Perry positioned himself to siphon Hispanic votes away from Obama? Let’s look at a few interesting facts.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, twelve states grant Texas style in-state college tuition to illegal immigrants stating “typically condition eligibility on attendance and graduation from a state high school and acceptable college admission applications.” Here’s the list of states in alphabetic order: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin. Three of the four states that have adopted this law are border states, making them directly affected by illegal immigration.
Perry has maintained that “if you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no other reason than they've been brought there by no fault of their own, I don't think you have a heart," and even though this has hurt him with his core base of conservatives, one cannot help but think this has to be attractive to Hispanics voters; a constituency that Republicans are going to need to siphon if they want any hope of winning the presidency now and in the future.
Perry’s defense against the exaggerated attacks from Gov. Romney and Rep. Michelle Bachmann has been to bring up the history of immigration in the United States; how can this not resonate strongly with Hispanics. He's used this same defense since the law passed, and by sticking to this defense, he can rightly claim that he is not like his closest rival Gov. Romney. Anything Romney says about this issue will make it that much harder for him to find any issue that resonates strongly with Hispanics, who I already stated is a key voting demographic.
When pushed on the federal D.R.E.A.M. Act, the Perry camp had this to say “Gov. Perry opposes amnesty and the federal D.R.E.A.M. Act. Washington must first secure the border before we can have any rational discussion about immigration reform. Once that is accomplished, then we can have a conversation about how to address immigration."
One has to wonder how this side step of the issue on the federal level will affect how Hispanic voters will see Perry; there is no way I can say with certainty. I know if I were a member of this community, I would think he has to move toward a stronger stance to make it through the primary process, and he will work on immigration reform once borders are closed and illegal immigration is down to a trickle like he has said. I do not see any reason that Perry cannot be seen as strong on immigration and passionate about giving children who are here at no fault of their own a chance at a better life. Perry has at least one Republican establishment voice that has come to his defense on this issue.Continued on the next page