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Hispanic Briefs: Hispanics Edge Back Towards Immigrants; In-State Tuition for Undocumented Immigrants; Oscar de la Renta Honored by CUNY Institute; LA Politica Becomes Candidato USA.

Hispanics Edge Back Toward Democrats After Years of Tilting to GOP, Poll Shows

Hispanics are returning to the Democratic Party after several years of drifting toward the Republicans, with many saying Bush administration policies have been harmful, a poll showed Thursday.

By 57 percent to 23 percent, more Hispanic registered voters say they favor Democrats than Republicans, according to a survey by the Pew Hispanic Center.

That 34 percentage-point Democratic edge which includes people who said they lean toward either party has grown since July 2006, when a Pew poll measured a 21-point difference. Then, 49 percent of registered Hispanic voters said they favored Democrats and 28 percent chose Republicans.

The survey found that among Hispanic registered voters:

  • Forty-one percent said Bush administration policies have been harmful to Hispanics.
  • Forty-one percent said Democrats do a better job of handling illegal immigration.
  • Younger Hispanics are slightly more inclined than older ones to be Democrats.
  • Those with higher incomes lean more toward the GOP than those with lower earnings.

Using September 2007 Census Bureau data and projecting from 2004 voting behavior, Pew estimated there would be 8.6 million Hispanic voters next year, 1 million more than in 2004.

The survey involved telephone interviews with 2,003 randomly chosen Hispanics conducted from Oct. 3 through Nov. 9. It had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.7 percentage points. It included 843 Hispanic registered voters, for whom the margin of sampling error was plus or minus 4 points.

Oregon Panel Explores In-state Tuition for Undocumented Immigrants

A panel of students, faculty and administrators is proposing charging in-state tuition for undocumented immigrant students at Oregon’s public universities.

The idea didn’t get to the last Legislature but is being discussed by the State Board of Higher Education as a way to diversify enrollment.

Tuition is three times higher than in-state rates for the undocumented immigrants, which prevents many high school graduates from attending college.

“It seemed to us that it was a reasonable position to take,” said Dalton Miller-Jones, a state board member and Portland State University professor who heads the panel.

The issue of taxpayer subsidies for undocumented students is part of the larger immigration debate expected to be a factor in the presidential race.

About 10 states, including California and Washington, already allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition.

Universities do not  track who is legally in the country and who is not. Latino students, most of whom are here legally, make up 4 percent of enrollment in the public university system and 10 percent of the state population.

Oscar de la Renta Honored by CUNY Dominican Institute

Fashion designer Oscar de la Renta recently received a special award from the City College of New York to celebrate the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute’s 15th Anniversary. About 500 CUNY graduates of Dominican heritage attended the event. It is also a salute to CUNY’s Dominican alumni, whose numbers exceed 35,000.

De la Renta, who is Dominican-born, was honored for his extraordinary achievements and contributions to the Dominican people and the world. The famed designer has built two schools that incorporate orphanages and day care centers in his native land. He also serves on the boards of the Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, Thirteen/WNET, UNICEF, the Americas Society and the Spanish Institute.

The CUNY Dominican Studies Institute was founded in 1992 and is the only university-based research institution in the United States focusing on the study of Dominican life outside of the Dominican Republic.


La Politica becomes Candidato USA After Legal Challenge

An electronic trade publication has announced that the name Candidato USA will replace La Politica, which covered the business of political marketing to Hispanics.

The publication also analyzes issues of education, health care, housing, foreign policy and free trade as they affect Hispanic voters in the United States.

Confronted with a legal challenge over its name by the publishers of Politico, owned by DC-based Allbritton Communications, LLC, the founders of La Politica faced the prospect of protracted litigation. They opted to avoid confrontation by launching under the new name and vowing to continue producing high quality content.

“Hispanic voters have distinct political interests and value systems from the rest of the electorate,” said Luis Clemens, editor of Candidato USA. “We will continue to report on the attempts by the campaigns to navigate these complex waters and reach out to Latinos.”

–Diverse Online staff and wire reports

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