Yesterday, NPR aired a story by Ari Shapiro on President Barack Obama’s attempts to court Latino voters. According to Shapiro, Obama’s “accomplishments for Latinos” include the following–purely symbolic–feats: a visit to Puerto Rico, appointing Sonya Sotomayor as “the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice” (forgetting Cardozo), and meetings “with Hispanic celebrities, activists and policy groups for summits, lunches and parties.”
Shaprio left out that fewer than 50% of Latinos say are certain to vote for Obama, and that Obama’s approval in Gallup polls is falling faster among Hispanics than any other ethnic group.
Shapiro did, however, highlight negative reaction from the National Council of La Raza to the fact that no GOP presidential candidates agreed to address its annual conference–without mentioning La Raza’s radicalism as a possible factor.
Shapiro’s bias was most evident when applauding President Obama for his grotesque, dishonest, and hyper-partisan attack on Republicans during his recent immigration speech in El Paso, Texas:
You know, they said we needed to triple the Border Patrol. Now they’re going to say we need to quadruple the Border Patrol, or they’ll want a higher fence. Maybe they’ll need a moat — maybe they want alligators in the moat.
At the time, Obama’s remarks were panned by former McCain aide Mark Salter, who recalled that Obama had been unhelpful in attempts to pass comprehensive immigration reform in the Senate. Yet Shapiro seems to think the El Paso attack–which he describes as one of Obama’s achievements for Latino voters–is praiseworthy. His story today was not only biased, but divisive–and failed to describe what is really happening among Latino voters.