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Can Hispanics see themselves as 'Junto con Romney' – Together with Romney?

Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney bashed his way to victory in the Republican primaries with a ‘get tough’ message on illegal immigration. Romney is now seeking to build bridges to an uneasy Hispanic constituency.

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, campaigning with Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., in Aston, Pa. in April. While Rubio denies any interest in the No. 2 slot on the ticket this year, he's working hard to stay in the national spotlight.

Jae C. Hong/AP

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Prepping for what some see as a potential game-changer speech in front of a Hispanic audience later this month, presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney has begun an effort to recalibrate his fiery anti-illegal immigration rhetoric to dig into the 2-1 advantage President Obama has among the 50 million-strong US Latino community.

After calling some of his rivals soft on immigration during the Republican primaries, and even suggesting that illegal immigrants should “self-deport,” Mr. Romney has recently hired a Hispanic outreach coordinator and is contemplating proposing an immigration reform package that could include a new class of visas for students. He even has a new Spanish slogan: “Junto con Romney,” or “Together with Romney.”

Contrasted with a slew of other Republican initiatives that seem to demonize Hispanics – purging voter rolls in Florida, inspecting residency papers at schools in Alabama, raising the stakes for picking up day workers in a pickup truck in Georgia – Romney’s gambit to cut into Obama’s advantage seems, at first glance, a Sisyphean task.

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