Washington Prowler

End of the Fiesta

Hispanic voters up for grabs. Plus: Feline Democrats.

By 6.10.03

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DON'T STOP THINKING ABOUT MAÑANA
While Republicans have made seemingly little headway with Hispanic voters across the country -- in California the state GOP's outreach to Hispanic voters remains almost nonexistent -- the Democratic National Committee may be doing their work for them.

"The Hispanics in our party are getting restless," says a DNC staffer. Recently national committee board members of Hispanic lineage went on the offensive against chairman Terry McAuliffe, charging that he had abandoned Hispanic voters across the country and promising to take actions similar to those taken by straight-shooting black Democratic leaders, particularly Donna Brazile.

"If the Democrats are going to keep fighting like this, it gives us a great opportunity to jump in and give all those Hispanic voters another party to look at," says an RNC staffer.

"If things play out, we'll have a much stronger message of inclusion and acceptance than the Democrats," the staffer added, pointing to a potential Supreme Court nomination and several high profile current and former Hispanic Bush administration members.

As well, White House political guru Karl Rove seems intent on slotting several Hispanic candidates into key races for 2004.

COPYCAT CLAWS
Sen. Bob Graham, one of the nine Democrats seeking their party's presidential nomination, has created a group dubbed "The Bobcats." These backers will be charged to raise $1,000 each in small individual donations. But Graham's group runs the risk of creating all sorts of confusion now that the NBA's expansion franchise in Charlotte, North Carolina, is due to formally announce its team name as ... the Bobcats -- apparently a clever play on the name of team owner Robert Johnson.

North Carolina presidential hopeful John Edwards will surely look for ways to jump on the bandwagon. Given Edwards' fundraising proclivities, who's to say he wouldn't create his own fundraising subset, just to get into Johnson's good graces.

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