Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus waits for the start of the U.S. vice presidential debate in Danville, Kentucky, October 11, 2012.
John Gress/Reuters

Republican outreach to Latino voters takes a big step backwards

After the 2012 elections, Reince Priebus and the Republican National Committee invested a fair amount of resources into a “Latino Outreach Project.” Party officials couldn’t have known at the time, however, who Republican voters would choose as their presidential nominee, in the process, undoing much of the work.
As Rachel noted on the show last night, Ruth Guerra, the RNC’s Director of Hispanic Media, resigned this week, and according to a New York Times report, she left because she was “uncomfortable” with working to elect Donald Trump.
The RNC, well aware of the circumstances, wasted no time in announcing that Guerra would be replaced by Helen Aguirre Ferre, a former Jeb Bush aide, who said in a statement how “eager” she is “to make the case to the Hispanic community why Republican ideas and values are the way forward for our country.”
So, problem solved? Not exactly. The Washington Post reported that Ferre has a problem with Trump, too.
Despite that eagerness, she frequently expressed doubts about Trump in public during appearances on Spanish-language television programs and on Twitter – as recently as last month.
Appearing May 8 on Univision’s “Al Punto,” a Sunday public affairs program hosted by the network’s popular anchor Jorge Ramos, she agreed with other panelists who said that a segment of the Republican Party would not unite around Trump.
Media Matters added this morning that Ferre has “deleted numerous tweets trashing presumptive nominee Donald Trump, including her proclamation that ‘women & country deserve better’ ” than the presumptive Republican nominee.
Asked last night about her criticisms of the candidate she’ll now try to help elect, Ferre changed the subject to complaining about President Obama and Hillary Clinton.
In other words, the RNC hired one Director of Hispanic Media who quit because she can’t defend the Republican presidential nominee, and she was replaced by a new Director of Hispanic Media who’s spent months condemning the Republican presidential nominee.
A Washington Post analysis added this morning, “Donald Trump is doing to the national GOP brand in 2016 what Proposition 187 did to California Republicans in 1994. He continues to inflict lasting, perhaps irreparable, damage to the party’s image among Hispanics. It is not hyperbole to say that Trumpism could relegate the party of Abraham Lincoln to long-term minority status.”