Democrats hurt by immigration reform delay

President_George_W._Bush_and_Barack_Obama_meet_in_Oval_OfficeBarely a month after President Obama’s announcement that he intended to wait until after the November midterm elections to reform the immigration laws of the United States using his executive authority, evidence is emerging that his decision may be having the very effect he was trying to avoid – hurting his own party.

Immigrant activists in a number of the nation’s key states say that it is getting harder and harder to register potential Latino voters who would vote for the Democratic party because of their disillusionment following the president’s decision to postpone. There have also been big drops in poll numbers for both the president and his party within the Hispanic community ‒ much more so than in the general populace.

There has even been a campaign launched by one group against a number of senators in the Democratic party who gave their backing to a Republican proposal to prevent Obama taking action on immigration reform using his executive authority. “The president has not helped us,” notes 28-year-old activist Leo Murrieta, who helps to register Latino voters within Colorado on behalf of Mi Familia Vota. “People are disappointed. They wanted action, they wanted activity, they wanted movement.”

With close races expected in the upcoming elections, Democrat candidates can ill afford flagging levels of support; however, Murrieta believes that the only way to spur increased turnout from Latino voters is for the party to take action rather than just talking about doing so.