Immigration Reform 2014 News: Latino Groups Step up Voter Registration Efforts Over Congressional Inaction
Latino and immigration advocacy groups are busy organizing registration drives, and others are running eduation campaigns. The November elections could be a referendum by voters on the Obama Administration and Congress' failure to pass comprehensive immigration reform.
Tthe New York Immigration Coalition announced this week 1,400 people had registered to vote in the past two weeks. The announcement was made on National Voter Registration Day on Tuesday in New York to coincide with similar events in immigrant-heavy districts in other states.
Taking an education approach which might have an outcome on Senate swing seats in several states, Presente Action is launching an advertising campaign on television and social media to encourage Latino voters to consider the congressional record of four Democratic Senators.
At issue is the work of Senators Kay Hagan (North Carolina), Mary Landrieu (Louisana), Mary Pryor (Arkansas), and Jeanne Shaheen (New Hampshire).
The Democrats, in an usual alliance, joined Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) in backing an amendment that would have restricted the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy and prevented any expansion of executive action on immigration. The measure failed to pass, however, according to The Huffington Post.
"These senators crossed the line," Arturo Carmona, executive director of Presente Action told The Huffington Post. "Latinos will no longer accept this type of behavior from elected officials, where the most vulnerable in our community are thrown under the bus."
Presente Action through its campaign will tell voters in the Senators' home states not to vote for the candidates. Of the states, only North Carolina has a sizeable Latino voting population, at 9 percent.
Angelo Falcon argued in his column entitled Latino Obama Rage: An Insider-Outsider Strategy for the National Institute for Latino Policy that efforts like these and those of Mi Familia Vota and Voto Latino are understood to be mobilizing Democratic voters.
"It will be interesting to see what all of this pressure --- both positive and negative --- will produce from the President and the Democrats after the midterms. If the Democrats maintain control of the Senate (which most pundits think is a longshot), will the President be emboldened and execute aggressive executive action for deportation relief, including pressing for passage of the DREAM Act? Or will he present a watered down version?" said Falcon.