In his March 31
column, Hudson, who is president of the Morley Institute, reported that
the Hispanic vote was credited as the decisive factor in George W.
Bush’s election. In 2004, Bush received 44 percent of the Hispanic
vote, up significantly from 2000. (63 percent of Hispanic Protestants
voted for Bush and 31 percent of Hispanic Catholics voted for Bush.)
Hispanics make up 9 percent of the electorate but are growing faster
than any other group, with 29 million Hispanic Catholics outnumbering
the 22 million white mainline Protestants, reports Hudson.
Aware of these
demographic shifts, the Bush White House put Hispanic political
outreach high on its priority list and fostered positive relations. But
these positive relations may be at risk with their proposed immigration
reform, which would impact Hispanic migration directly.
bishops, Roger Cardinal Mahony, archbishop of Los Angeles, condemned
the bill, which seems to criminalize the Church's social services for
responded by protesting in the streets of major American cities “in
numbers unparalleled in our history,” says Hudson.
At the same
time, however, their protests seemed to forget Bush's "guest worker"
program, introduced in early 2004 as well as the bi-partisan Senate
immigration bill, co-sponsored by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Ted
Kennedy (D-MA), Hudson observes.
their current House immigration bill, the Republicans risk becoming an
anti-immigrant party and “losing ground both with Hispanic voters and
non-Hispanic Catholic voters who sympathize with their plight,” says
Deal Hudson, editor of the e-magazine “The Window.”