As expected, SEIU exploits DREAM Act vote

As we noted in a recent editorial, Senate Democrats brought a few doomed measures to the floor recently in an attempt to generate some fodder for political advertisements. We compared the last-minute vote on the DREAM Act to the Republicans’ desperate 2006 vote on a flag-burning amendment.

We also predicted that you would soon hear about Spanish-language ads blasting Republicans for voting against DREAM, which provides a limited amnesty for some college students and allows state colleges to charge lower tuition rates to illegal immigrants than they do to Americans living out of state.

So here’s a big “Told you so.”

Washington, DC – Today, the Service Employees International Union, Mi Familia Vota Civic Participation Campaign, and America’s Voice are launching Spanish-language radio ads in nine media markets across the country. The ads point to the Republican Party’s obstructionism on immigration reform, cite the GOP’s successful effort to block a vote on the DREAM Act last week, and encourage voters to support the candidates who “support our families, and make our dreams come true.”

The $300,000 ad buy is the largest national ad campaign from pro-immigration reform organizations, and marks the beginning of a voter mobilization drive across the nation to hold politicians accountable for demonizing immigrants and blocking progress on common sense immigration reform. The ads will run in Phoenix and Tucson, AZ; Denver, CO; Miami and Orlando, FL; Chicago, IL; Las Vegas, NV; and Houston and McAllen, TX—all areas where Latino voters will play a decisive role in contested races this November and in 2012.

We’ll find out for sure when the FEC reports are filed, but the targeted races here appear to be FL-25 (open, M. Diaz-Balart), NV-3 (Titus), CO-7 (Perlmutter), IL-10 (open, Kirk), IL-11 (Halvorson), IL-14 (Foster), AZ-5 (Mitchell), AZ-8 (Giffords), and FL-8 (Grayson).

The SEIU’s buys in Texas don’t hit any contested congressional races, but they might represent an attempt to drive up Hispanic turnout against Gov. Rick Perry, R. (It is kind of surprising that they didn’t go for El Paso or Laredo or San Antonio and try to help out endangered Rep. Ciro Rodriguez, D.)

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