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Apr 8, 2008
Are you following the Hilary and Obama Road Show? I am participating in a virtual book tour for the Ethic Presidency blog blitz. Read the second excerpt from author Earl Ofari Hutchinson and his book The Ethnic Presidency.
The ethic jockeying of Clinton and Obama was really only a side show in the Democratic primaries. If either one of them got the nomination, they had a lock on the black vote, perhaps even a record turnout and vote of blacks. The Latino and Asian vote was another matter. It was very much in play both in the Democratic primaries, and possibly in the general election as well. The dash to La Raza’s convention by Obama and Clinton, and to just about any other major Latino or Asian political or voter forum nationally was a mandatory stop that both had to make.
The scramble for leading endorsements from top Latino elected officials was vital.For the moment though, Clinton had the political juice to get the biggest of the big names among Latino politicians in her camp. She also showed that she was adept at thinking on her feet to head off a potential public relations disaster with Asian-American supporters. When several Asian foreign language reporters were blocked from entering a Clinton townhall event in San Francisco in February 2007, Hillary rushed back to the city to hold a special session with Asian journalists there and that prominently included the journalists snubbed earlier.
The trek to Miami and other Latino conferences, and rallies, was only part of Obama’s plan to stay in the hunt with Hillary for the Latino vote. In a campaign stop in San Antonio, Texas, in July, Obama brashly attempted to wrap himself in the mantle of Cesar Chavez, the revered 1960s Latino labor leader and civil rights icon. Being an unknown political quantity among Latinos was only one problem for Obama. The other was the latent tensions and at times low intensity warfare that raged between blacks and Latinos in some cities such as Los Angeles over jobs, and immigration, and at times exploded in gang and prison violence. This could severely damage Obama’s court of Latino voters in the nation’s biggest delegate state, California. In Los Angeles County, Latinos made up nearly one-third of the voters.
For much more information about Earl Ofari Hutchinson and The Ethnic Presidency: How Race Affects the Race to the White House, visit his blog blitz homepage - To order your copy of the Ethnic Presidency, visit Earl Ofari Hutchinson's website or Amazon here.