LULAC Demands Recall & Denunciation of Offensive Political Flyer

Well Funded Republican Group Stoops to Race Baiting and Ridiculing Latinos

For more information contact: Lizette Jenness Olmos, (202) 365-4553 mobile

Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens demands an immediate recall and denunciation of one of the most offensive political advertisements in this already divisive election season. The advertisement, paid for by the Republican State Leadership Committee of Virginia, uses a Spanish-speaking Chihuahua to dehumanize Ohio’s Latino community and warns English-speaking voters that they may have to learn Spanish if Democrat Connie Pillich beats Republican Virgil Lovitt in the race for Ohio’s 28th district.

“We find the flyer of a Chihuahua in a sombrero with the words ‘Can you speak Spanish? Ay Caramba!’ extremely offensive and out of bounds for any election,” said LULAC National President Rosa Rosales. “What’s worse the advertisement blatantly distorts the truth by implying that Ohio voters will have to learn Spanish if they don’t pass an English-only bill in their state. LULAC demands the flyers recall and we are urging Republican officials from the Republican National Committee to candidate Virgil Lovitt himself to denounce the advertisement as offensive to Latinos and factually incorrect.”

“In a time when Latinos are celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, it is shameful that a candidate would use these images to insult specific nationalities in order to create a wedge issue for the November elections,” said LULAC Ohio State Director Jason Riveiro.

LULAC National has contacted the McCain Campaign and the Republican National Committee and urged them to speak out against this offensive advertisement distributed by a well-funded Republican ‘527’ political group. According to the web site, the Republican State Leadership Committee has raised $38,910,779 and spent $38,455,778. Their contributor list features hundreds of Fortune 500 companies.

“At a time when the American tax payer has been called upon to bail Wall Street out of its financial crisis, the last thing they want to see is these same companies funding political advertisements laden with false and racially offensive language and imagery,” stated Brent Wilkes, LULAC National Executive Director. “We will be asking each and every one of the Republican State Leadership Committee’s corporate donors to cease supporting the group and to demand that the group recall and apologize for the flyer.”

The League of United Latin American Citizens advances the economic condition, educational attainment, political influence, health and civil rights of Hispanic Americans through community-based programs operating at more than 700 LULAC councils nationwide.

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