Today’s Wall Street Journal (WSJ), CNN and the spinning class at large are abuzz with the possibility of a Lou Dobbs Presidential bid. This piece in the WSJ is pretty typical of what the chatterati are saying.
The depths of despair among “disaffected” (and overwhelmingly white) voters is palpable and a Dobbs candidacy may be just the electoral Viagra they need, according to one William Gheen, one of those “grassroots” racists the mainstream media can’t seem to get enough of.
“At this point, Dobbs is the only man in the country that would have a shot at making a historic independent run, and winning,” says William Gheen, president of Americans for Legal Immigration, an influential grass-roots group that favors strict enforcement of immigration laws, a favorite subject of Mr. Dobbs’s.
I for one wholeheartedly endorse a Dobbs candidacy if only because it will raise awareness of the issue in a more pointed way than even Tom Nobody-Can-Out-Anti-Immigrant-Me Tancredo. Really. Dobbs will force Obama and McCain to adopt more definite positions. But that’s less important than the effect such a bid might have among certain segments of the populace.
Among the groups most needing to wake up to the Dobbsian zietgeist are Latino and other immigrants themselves.
Reflecting what appears to be a huge and strategic chasm between many immigrant rights leaders and the immigrants communities they allegedly lead, most Latino immigrants in the United States have no idea who Lou Dobbs, their most powerful and telegenic adversary, is.
Most immigrants can pick out Tancredo, their toupee’d arch nemesis, from a line up, but most can’t identify the more dapper Dobbs. Spanish language media doesn’t talk about Dobbs and immigrant rights activists spend lots of time defending against and cursing him – en Ingles. And CNN en Espanol doesn’t dare turn him into a crossover star lest they risk losing advertising en Espanol. So, people like my parents, my cousins and most documented and undocumented immigrants I know haven’t an inkling what Lou Dobbs means.
Let us hope he runs.