Photo: Reuters (Photo : Reuters)
Congressional Republicans have received a storm of backlash in response to their latest attempt to reach out to Latinos in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month.
A group of eight House GOP leaders released a YouTube video commending Hispanics for their contributions to culture, society, and the American economy. However, they failed to address one the biggest issues being pushed in the Latino community--comprehensive immigration reform.
The video opens with a message from House Speaker John Boehner and other key GOP members including Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy and Majority Leader Eric Cantor. Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart, Bill Flores Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Raul Labrador also made an appearance in the minute long ad.
"If you really care about Hispanics then let immigration come for a vote, there is enough votes to pass it," said user Pabloco2627, notes the Huffington Post. "Words are nice but they don't mean much."
On the video's YouTube page, comments were particularly scathing.
"Tell me exactly how is it that the GOP celebrate the Hispanics???? By blocking a vote on comprehensive immigration reform with the undemocratic Hastert rule Mr. Boehner?," wrote Youtube user Tara O'Brien. "By maintaining the status quo which is tearing families apart Mrs. Ros-Lehtinen (since you mention the family I thought I would ask you!)? Is this some kind of a joke? I ask cause is not funny."
"Re the Republican Hispanic Heritage Video: All talk and no action as usual. #immigrationreform is blown off even though it would reduce the budget deficit and help millions. Shame on you, John Boehner!!!!!" wrote Jenee LeMond.
User rover09151976em was also unmoved by the outreach video House Republicans made, blasting the GOP as being uncaring about Latinos due to their reluctance to approve immigration reform on the House floor.
"Actions speak louder than words. if you people, (Republicans on congress) mr speaker Jonh Boehner, really care about latinos. you need to pass immigration reform this year and stop the suffering of millions of mixed status families, we demand you to do it. We will not listen to anything the GOP had to say until the immigration reform has been done. We see you on November," the user posted.
Others noted the absence of prominent Republican Senator and "Gang of Eight" member Marco Rubio, R-Fla., of Cuban descent, although it should be noted that the video was made by Republicans from the House, not the Senate.
"Was Marco Rubio busy drinking too much water at the time the video was made to make an appearance?" posted user moises alcazar on YouTube.
A number of polls consistently show that a large majority of Latino voters favor passing comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship, reports ThinkProgress.
According to a study released by the NCLR, at least 37.3 percent of the Hispanic population in the U.S. are immigrants and 76 percent of the 11 million undocumented population are Hispanic. Plus, at least 67 percent of Latino registered voters personally know an undocumented immigrant. Nevertheless, the ad did not make any mention of the significance of immigration to Hispanic-Americans, or immigration reform. In addition, 52 percent of Latino voters say they would view the GOP more favorably if they passed reform.
Watch the ad below: