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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.

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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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