Bear with me as I set up an analogous analysis:
There’s a chapter of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly in which the heroes (relatively speaking) join up with the Union Army. The Captain (not General) explains that the bridge they’re defending is really a useless fly-speck on a map, but both sides are killing each other over it because they don’t want the other side to have control of it. Once our heroes (relatively speaking) blow up the bridge, both the Union and the Confederate armies clear out; there’s no reason to hang around if there’s nothing more to fight about. The bridge, after all, was merely a token and now it can be ignored; it’s not even worth restoring or making it better.
Regardless of their stated or actual intentions before and during the Civil War, the Republican Party’s actions after the war was over could easily be perceived as treating the emancipated slaves and their descendants just like that bridge: Once the war was over, once they were no longer a symbol or token of the conflict, the Republican Party had less incentive to be concerned with their plight, and much less incentive to actually help them. This is crystallized in the Republican Party’s willingness to strike a Devil’s Bargain: If the Southern States of the Electoral College would give Rutherford B. Hayes the Presidency (in spite of the popular vote count saying otherwise) the Republican Administration would drop Reconstruction efforts and let the Southern States proceed as they wished without interference from federal troops. While white southerners had been voting anti-Republican (i.e. Democrat) since the end of the Civil War, this has been seen by African Americans as the removal of protections from discriminatory practices and organizations (e.g. lynchings and the KKK) and basically dropping (or exchanging) the banner of human equality in order to grab the scepter of power. It seemed that the Republican Party had sold out, betraying the slaves they had freed in order to hold the White House for another term.
Had I been a sharecropper at that time, I would have asked a Republican, “Did you free me because you thought I should be free, or did you free me just to cripple my master?”
This has made the Republican Party (as an entity) look like a man who will do anything to win – win a fight, win a war, win an election; anything for power; ethics be damned – and subsequent actions by the GOP have failed to improve their image. To many, Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, and Herman Cain looked like tokens provided by the Republican party simply to try and gain Black votes.* Even if you ignore the widespread racism in the party (or earnestly believe that it never existed and won’t arise) the Republican party has repeatedly demonstrated that its biggest interest is in making sure the rich stay rich and the non-rich…well, that’s not worth their concern. And since the majority of Black US Citizens (regardless of ancestry or national origin) are still not rich, the Republican party will only ever enlist the few rare tokens who share that value.
As for the OP, the first mistake in the proposal is in gesturing at the Spanish-speaking people of the United States and saying, “We should invite that block. Our values are similar to theirs.” and in fact the same mistake is made in regard to Asians and, after the various wars and Operations in the eastern Mediterranean regions have faded to mere memories, the same mistake will be made in regard to ‘those middle eastern guys.’ The egregious error is in viewing ‘them’ as a solid homogenous voter block for which the attributes and values can be scribbled on a business card for easy reference when giving speeches at their national conventions. The error is in honestly believing Mr. Flores from Santa Barbara speaks exactly the same as Mr. Martinez from Honduras and their speech is exactly the same as what Ms. Escalante from Venezuela and Mr. Santana from Tijuana and Mr. Montana from Cuba have learned. Not only are those dialects, accents, and lexicons different, but you’ll find that they have different cuisines, religious perspectives, political views, social concerns, etcetera.
Most revealing is the rift between Tea Party Republicans and the traditional Midwestern farmer base of the Republican party. In a report on the internal dispute over the immigration reform issue, the Tea Party is described as not welcoming foreigners into the country because it dilutes the funds available to US natives – well, post-European take-over natives. In contrast, the breadbasket Republicans want to welcome immigrants because they comprise the supply of migrant laborers who are willing to do the harvesting for less than minimum wage. So the disagreement is that the Tea Party faction doesn’t want immigrants from below the border (in particular) at all while the old farm-owning base wants to continue being able to exploit ‘those people’ for as long as possible. Which of these two stances makes Mr. Torres feel like a valued individual?
- I do not mean to discredit or ignore their achievements and qualifications here. I’m simply conveying that many skeptics perceive them as tokens whom the Republicans insincerely present as examples of the Party’s demographic inclusiveness. It’s very much like Rick Perry standing up and saying, “I’m not homophobic. I have a ninth cousin thrice removed who’s gay – Well no, of course I never spoke with him.”