Report By Richard Geno
Martha Montelongo kept our audience rapt for one hour as she provided 90-100 conservatives an outlook that we do not often hear. A strong believer in the liberties of free markets and limited government, Martha shared how a conservative Mexican-American views America. She is a devotee to the Constitution, and sees the United States as a beacon of light "endowed by our Creator."
Martha encouraged conservatives to emphasize those things that unify Mexican-Americans and conservatives, rather than those things that divide us. She pointed out that 68.6% of the Hispanic population voted for Obama for president, and yet 59.0% of Hispanic Californians voted for "Yes on 8." Needless to say, Mexican-Americans are already a significant part of the electorate, and they are a fast growing constituency.
She encouraged us to reach out to Hispanics. Furthermore, she indicated that we did not have to "sellout" our principles to do so. Mexican-Americans, by-and-large, are hard working and very entrepreneurial. Hispanic business owners are one of the largest demographic growth areas of our economy. We can attract them with the free enterprise message, property rights and charter school education. The Hispanic population also is socially conservative - more so than the Caucasian population. One example was Proposition 8 where Caucasians voted 51-49 against Proposition 8 while Mexican-Americans supported it 59-41.
We had a spirited discussion of issues following Martha's formal remarks.
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