Someone tell Team Mitt: We get it. You’re courting white blue collar males. If anyone was hazy about who exactly the presidential campaign of Mitt Romney is focused on and whose votes they are trying to win, a glance at his latest ads would answer the question.
Of course there’s nothing wrong with courting anybody and focusing on a key constituency. But with 50 million Hispanics, 40 million Black people and 157 million women of all colors in the U.S., the omissions are striking.
Romney’s ads display a narrowly constructed world of men with few women and no color in an effort that is borderline obsessive. Could it be an accident or pure coincidence that no one in Romney’s latest ads is either Latino or Black? Though women represent more than half the population in the U.S., only one scene in Romney’s ad on welfare focuses on a female. In the latest Medicare ad men dominate the imagery once again.
Yesterday in Ohio Romney stood in front of a large group of coal miners. You guessed it: All white males. Few women could even be seen on the outskirts of the scene the campaign staged for the media. In photos posted on the Romney flickr site there was a lone woman on the edge of an all white male image of Romney greeting coal miners who appeared to be a Romney campaign staff member.
The Republican party tent would appear to have narrowed in recent years. At a time when Latinos are one of the fastest growing demographics in the U.S., the Romney campaign’s policy agenda has found a singular target.
Under former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele there was talk in the GOP of trying to recruit minorities into the party. That talk has now completely vanished.
LAUREN VICTORIA BURKE, Politic365 Managing Editor, publishes the blog Crewof42 on the Congressional Black Caucus. She can be heard every Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET on WMCS 1290 in Milwaukee on Earl Ingram’s show The Evening Rush as well as on WPFW 89.3 every Friday at 6:30 p.m. Ms. Burke is a former employee of USAToday.com and ABC News. You can e-mail her at LBurke007@gmail.com follow her on twitter @Crewof42.