Saturday, November 10, 2007

Oh, now they care about minorities

Oh, now they care about minorities
By: Steve Benen

In September, PBS hosted a Republican presidential candidates’ debate at historically black college in Baltimore — and all of the top four GOP candidates decided to skip it. This followed close on the heels of a Univision-hosted Republican debate in Miami on Latino issues — which was cancelled when all but one candidate declined invitations. The National Council of La Raza asked Republican candidates to address its annual conference in July, but none showed up. The National Association of Latino Elected & Appointed Officials extended similar invitations to the entire GOP field, but only Duncan Hunter agreed to attend.

Just two weeks ago, the entire Republican presidential field blew off the Congressional Black Caucus Institute’s debate, co-hosted by Fox News. A not-so-subtle pattern emerged — if you’re darker than a manila envelope, the GOP candidates aren’t interested in talking to you.
But now, I’m pleased to report that the Republicans have had
a change of heart.

Jilted by the GOP earlier this year, viewers of the nation’s largest Spanish-language television network will get a chance to see the Republican presidential candidates debate in Miami on Dec. 9.

Simon Rosenberg attributes the sudden turnaround to the GOP’s new-found understanding that the party’s strategy isn’t working.