ROMNEY WINS PUERTO RICO’S GOP PRIMARY

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Romney handily wins Puerto Rico‘s GOP primary

Mitt Romney heads in to Illinois’s presidential primary this week with a handy win in Puerto Rico, pocketing the territory’s 20 GOP delegates in a bruising race that has become a numbers game for the Republican nomination.

With about 83% of total ballots accounted for early Monday in Puerto Rico, Romney had garnered more than 98,000 votes — or 83% of the total — based on unofficial results obtained from local party and election officials.

Rick Santorum was a distant second, at 8% with slightly more than 9,500 votes.

The other two candidates, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Rep. Ron Paul, were barely registered in the race with 2,431 votes, or 2% of the vote, and 1,452 votes, or 1%, respectively.

Even as the vote was being counted in Puerto Rico, Romney, Santorum and the other candidates were already on the mainland vying for delegates in Illinois and Louisiana.

Illinois holds its primary on Tuesday and Louisiana on Saturday.

CNN’s latest delegate estimates show Romney with 518 delegates to Santorum’s 239. Gingrich has 139 delegates, and Paul, the libertarian champion, has 69 delegates. To secure the nomination, 1,144 delegates are needed.

Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, was in Louisiana late Sunday, where he is expected to win the primary.

Romney was in Illinois where polls indicate he holds a small lead over Santorum, with Gingrich and Paul well behind.

Romney framed his win in Puerto Rico as the territory’s desire for a candidate that “most represents their feelings” — and especially their desire to nominate some who can bring about a stronger economy and a smaller government.

He also said his party can appeal to Latinos, and win the presidency, with a low-tax, pro-business message.

“Those people who don’t think that Latinos will vote for a Republican need to take a look in Puerto Rico,” said the former Massachusetts governor, noting that the territory’s governor and its legislative leaders are conservative.

photo AP

“Hispanic voters are going to vote for Republicans if we stand for something — conservative principles that bring growth and good jobs and rising home values. That’s how we’re going to win, and we’re going to get Latino voters to help us out.”

Romney had entered the contest in Puerto Rico as the favorite. He was largely backed by the island government’s political establishment, including Gov. Luis Fortuno, who campaigned with Romney last week.

Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, created a small political firestorm on the island in the days leading up to the primary when he said English should be the principal language in Puerto Rico before it could gain statehood. Puerto Rico will vote on a statehood referendum in November.

After arriving in Puerto Rico on Friday, Romney said he would have “no preconditions” on language for Puerto Rico to gain statehood, though during a CNN debate in January he said English should be the nation’s official language.

Santorum immediately hit back, accusing Romney of flip-flopping.

Romney fired back that English has been the official language of the government in Puerto Rico for more than 100 years.

The heated, see-saw allegations between the two candidates have marked much of the race for the GOP nomination, which Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, called “the nastiest I’ve ever seen” during an appearance Sunday on NBC’s “Meet The Press.”

Puerto Rico’s primary came two days before the showdown in Illinois, where 54 delegates will be awarded proportionally and polls show a tight race between Romney and Santorum.

Asked over the weekend while campaigning in Missouri about whether a win in Illinois would mean he’d win the nomination, Santorum said: “We feel very, very good about it. Let’s put it that way. Really good about it.”

Santorum also challenged Romney’s assertion that his business experience is one of his strongest credentials, telling CNN’s Candy Crowley on “State of the Union” on Sunday that, “If Gov. Romney thinks that he is the CEO of America and can run and manage the economy, he doesn’t understand what conservatives believe in.”

Romney’s campaign released an ad in Illinois on Friday, attacking Santorum for having “never run a business or a state.”

Santorum on Sunday said he had experience in the private sector as a lawyer, but argued that executive experience at a company is not necessary to be commander-in-chief.

“Running a business is not the same as being president of the United States,” he said.

Santorum also gave no indication that he has plans to drop out of the race should his campaign reach a point where the delegate math doesn’t add up in his favor.

“What I’m hearing is that we want a conservative nominee, that the establishment is trying to push a moderate like they did in 1976 against Ronald Reagan, like they did in 1996 with Bob Dole and what they did with John McCain,” Santorum said. “I think conservatives would like an opportunity to nominate a conservative, and that’s an opportunity.”

Both Santorum and Romney also focused their rhetoric at President Barack Obama, particularly with regard to rising gas prices.

Romney said Obama needed to fire Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar for their role in driving up gas prices.

“Given the fact that (Obama has) changed his policies, wants lower gas prices, he needs to fire them and return to the energy policies we need,” Romney said during a town hall meeting in Collinsville, Illinois.

Santorum told a crowd in Effingham, Illinois, to remember Obama at the gas pumps.

“When you see that zero come up, when it gets to the $100 range, when you see the zero, think of ‘O’ for Obama because that’s why you are paying that extra amount of money,” Santorum said.

READ MORE: CNN NEWS

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WHAT DID VICE PRESIDENT BIDEN DO IN MEXICO AND HONDURAS?

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Vice President Biden interviews with Telemundo, Univisión, and CNN en Español

Vice President Biden interviewed with Telemundo, Univisión and CNN en Español this week after returning from a visit to Mexico and Honduras as part of the administration’s sustained, high-level engagement with the Americas. The Vice President’s visit comes in advance of the President’s participation in the Summit of the Americas this April in Colombia, which will focus on leveraging Hemispheric connections and partnerships to improve the lives of people throughout the region.

In addition to discussing his visit, the Vice President talked about the DREAM Act, immigration reform, and what it meant to him to visit the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe – one of the most visited Roman Catholic sites in the world and the most holy Roman Catholic site in Mexico.

Both Telemundo and Univision will air larger portions of the interview on their Sunday shows Enfoque and Al Punto so tune in, but here are clips of the interviews they have already run.

Take a look at the Vice President’s comments to Jose Diaz Balart from Telmundo: On the DREAM ActOn his visit to the Basilica

To see the Vice President’s interview with CNN en Español: Click Here

For an excerpt of the Vice President’s comments to Maria Elena Salinas from Univisión: Click Here

To read more about the Vice President’s trip to Mexico and Honduras Click Here, and for a blog post on his visit to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe Click Here.

See a slideshow of the Vice President’s triphere.

READ MORE: From Luis Miranda the White House Director of Hispanic Media

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DID HISPANIC NEWS TAKE THE SPOTLIGHT

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

In 2012 Hispanic News Takes the Spotlight

NASA Univision Hispanic Education Campaign (20...

NASA Univision Hispanic Education Campaign (201002230007HQ) (Photo credit: nasa hq photo)

In this election year, the candidates are treating the Univisions and Telemundos of the world the same as they do many English-language networks.

The Hispanic news media clearly are not only playing a significant role in coverage of the primaries, they also have the respect of all the major candidates. The GOP hopefuls seem to be treating Hispanic media on par with their English-language networks, if not going out of their way to be sure they make their points to Hispanic voters.

The major Spanish-language news outlets also has a partner in an English-language outlet, be it CNN and CNN en Espanol, Telemundo and NBC, or Univision and ABC News. Even Fox News Latino–which exists only online and does not have its own TV outlet–is expanding, releasing its first ever poll yesterday.

logo from logopedia

The partnerships have been beneficial:

Hudson says this is the first time in national political elections that CNN en Espanol has been cobranded with CNN and shared in coverage. “It’s the first time that the network has been perceived to be a major asset to English-language CNN,” she says. “We launched our primary coverage last July. Since then we have been doing tagteam coverage with CNN. We cosponsor the debates with CNN and we carry all of them live, translating them into Spanish. And our political analyst, Marisa Cardona, also appears on CNN.”Telemundo’s Falcon says her network’s partnership with NBC News “is extremely important to us, a very valuable asset.” She adds that Telemundo plans to cover every Republican caucus and primary going forward, offering coverage across all of its platforms. She says while extra emphasis will be on covering states with large Hispanic populations, all primaries will be covered. Falcon also says Telemundo will expand Enfoque from a half-hour to an hour in the near future.

Read More: http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/in-2012-hispanic-news-outlets-take-the-spotlight_b115114

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DO HISPANIC LEADERS CARE ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT?

THE HISPANIC BLOG BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Why the environment is a Latino issue

photo by CNN: A fruit vendor walks near the Department of Water and Power San Fernando Valley Generating Station in Sun Valley, California.

For Latinos, there is plenty in this budget, especially coming on the heels of the president’s State of the Union speech a couple of weeks ago, to remind us that there is still reason to be hopeful. Obama‘s call for greater income equality on taxes, his focus on job creation, including focusing on key elements of his American Jobs Act (supported by 78% of Latinos), his renewed call for DREAM Act legislation in the State of the Union, and yes, his commitment to environmental and public health protections, as well as for the expansion of a clean energy economy.

More than 150,000 jobs are already out there in the clean car industry — for workers making parts and assembling hybrid and electric cars. And the shift to more advanced vehicles means more opportunity in the coming years.

Read More: http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/15/opinion/cardona-latino-environment/index.html

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