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Hispanics, women: Problems for the GOP?

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Could you pass a US citizenship test?

This tone in how the GOP candidates discuss immigration and other issues particularly important to Hispanic voters concerns others as well.

In a piece headlined “Republicans Are Needlessly Offending Hispanics” in the National Review Online, conservative columnist Mona Charen had this advice for Republican candidates:

“Republicans should never discuss illegal immigration without first praising the contributions that legal Hispanic and other immigrants have made to American society…. They should showcase high-ranking Republican officeholders, entertainers, and businessmen of Hispanic ancestry. They should learn a few words of Spanish. Then, and only then, should they express their opposition to illegal immigration. How you say it matters as much as what you say.”

Tone in campaign rhetoric is important regarding women as well, and here too the GOP has challenges.

The women’s vote in 2008 was a virtual landslide for Obama: 56 percent for him, 43 percent for McCain.

In the 2010 midterm elections, women and men voted pretty much alike. That may be changing, however.

“Now, female voters appear to be swinging back to Democrats,” writes Karen Tumulty in the Washington Post. “A number of polls show Obama’s approval among women has risen significantly since December, even as it has remained flat among men.”

A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll out this week has Obama “benefiting from an increase in support from white women, Midwesterners and white, blue-collar Americans.”

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