Romney’s son: “My grandfather was born in Mexico.”
Craig Romney makes another appeal to Spanish-language voters en Español.
In the Romney campaign’s latest appeal to Latino voters — a Spanish-language radio advertisement — the candidate’s son, hispanohablante Craig Romney, says that his father is a man of conviction who wants to revive the American Dream. He also notes that his father values the United States as a nation of immigrants and that his own grandfather, George Romney, was born in Mexico.
It’s not the first time the campaign has hinted at George Romney’s Mexican birthplace in a Spanish language ad. In the television ad below, Romney’s son uses the same line about his Mexican-born grandfather.
As the presidential campaign heats up, Romney is still lagging President Obama by more than 40 percent with Latino voters, an important voting bloc in many battleground states. The Romney campaign’s repeated reference to George Romney’s Mexican birthplace in the Spanish language ad comes after the candidate told Univision’s Jorge Ramos that claiming some sort of Mexican heritage would be “disingenuous.”
Earlier this year, Ramos asked the candidate explicitly about his father’s birthplace. Here’s how it went:
”The mother of former governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, she was born in Mexico, and he calls himself Mexican-American,” Ramos said. “Your father was born in Mexico. So the question is, are you Mexican-American? Could you be the first Hispanic president?” he asked.
In response, Romney clarified his own connection with the country:
The candidate said, “I would love to be able to convince people of that, particularly in a Florida primary. [Laughter.] But I think that might be disingenuous on my part, because, in my case, my dad was born in Mexico, and I am proud of my heritage. But he was born of U.S. citizens who were living in Mexico at the time, and was not Hispanic. He never spoke Spanish, nor did his parents. So I can’t claim that honor. But he lived in Mexico until he was five or six years old. And then, with the revolution in Mexico, his parents and he, as a young boy, came back to the United States and settled in the western part of the country.”
When Ramos pushed the question further, Romney joked that a little ambiguity surrounding his heritage might not hurt.
“I don’t think people would think I was being honest with them if I said I was Mexican-American,” Romney said. ”But I would appreciate it if you’d get that word out.”
(Photo: screenshot, YouTube; Video: YouTube, Romney Campaign)