The July 3 Sunday Politics column used an incorrect Spanish phrase for "Vote for me." The correct phrase is "Vote por mi," not "Vote para mi." (Published 07/06/05).
Want to run for office? Practice this: "Vote para mi."
Nearly two-thirds of Hispanics rely more on Spanish-speaking media for political news than on mainstream English-language media, according to a new survey commissioned by the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, and conducted by pollster Sergio Bendixen, who specializes in Hispanic public opinion.
The ratio is reversed for other ethnic groups. The survey found that between 60 and 66 percent of African Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans and Arab Americans prefer the mainstream media for political news. Ethnic media reach 51 million adults in the United States, with Hispanics the primary consumers.
Republicans appear to have cracked the code. In the 2004 election, the findings show that voters who got most of their news from an ethnic media outlet were three times more likely to vote for President Bush than for Democrat John F. Kerry.
Maybe this is why: Hours after Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor announced her retirement, the Republican National Committee had posted a tribute from Chairman Ken Mehlman in Spanish and English. On the Democratic National Committee Web site, it was English-only for Chairman Howard Dean.
Rushton Wins, 5 to 4
And the rapid response award on O'Connor goes to . . . Sean Rushton, executive director of the conservative Committee for Justice, who blasted an e-mail at 10:28 a.m. that said, "Confirmed: O'Connor is stepping down." It was the first in a deluge for anyone in Washington lucky enough to be on a Supreme Court watch list.
Three minutes later, at 10:31 a.m., came a short news release from Rep. Melissa Hart (R-Pa.) paying tribute to the retiring justice. At 10:32 a.m., People for the American Way, one of the leading liberal groups in the coming court fight, weighed in with a lengthy statement headlined, "O'Connor resignation a critical moment for the Constitution, crucial test for President Bush and Senate."
Then the releases came flying in, at a clip of at least one a minute. The office of Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) helpfully provided an audio file of the freshman senator's response. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) could barely contain his disdain for the moderate O'Connor. "I would hope that President Bush's nominee will swing the court back toward the Constitution and away from an era of self-indulgent judicial activism," he said.
Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) may have pulled off the quickest turnaround. When the news broke in mid-morning, his office tracked him down at a Binghamton, N.Y., hospital, where he was talking about a special blood donor program. Schumer flew back to Washington in time to hold a 1:45 p.m. news conference. Only problem was, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's office was simultaneously holding a briefing on the nomination process, so Schumer didn't have the expected packed house.
Zogby Polls on the I Word
Even the pollster couldn't believe his eyes. "It was much higher than I expected," John Zogby said of the 42 percent of voters who said they would support impeaching President Bush if it were established that he lied about his reasons for the Iraq war. The Zogby International poll was released Thursday and showed Bush's job approval rating at 43 percent.
By comparison, in October 1998, as the House moved to impeach President Bill Clinton over the Monica S. Lewinsky scandal, a Zogby poll found that 39 percent of voters supported the House action, while 56 percent opposed it.
Bush also fared worse within his own party. Among Republicans in the latest Zogby poll, 25 percent said they would support impeachment if Bush lied. Among Clinton's fellow Democrats, support for impeachment was below 14 percent.
Zogby said the hypothetical question "reveals just how badly divided this country is over the war," but also that people may be more comfortable with the idea of throwing a president out of office. "Presidents go to war and do things that are questionable by large numbers of citizens," said Zogby, but no one has ever been impeached for it.
Unlikely that the Republican-led House will begin proceedings anytime soon. But the Web sites are up and running. Impeachcentral.com is running a petition drive. Impeachbush.org is planning a march on Washington in September. Thefourreasons.org site argues that the Iraq invasion was unconstitutional. Afterdowningstreet.org asserts that Bush secretly decided to go to war and to mislead Congress in mid-2002.
Gallup v. Gallup
Imitation is the highest form of flattery, right? Not if you're in the public opinion business.
Mjaft! (translation: Enough!), a U.S. government-supported Democratic reform group in Albania, released two polls under the name Gallup International in the run-up to today's national elections.
Problem is, Gallup International is a Bulgarian-based company that has been sued three times by the Gallup Organization, which publishes the Gallup poll and has no connection to Gallup International.