How the Israel lobby is courting US Latinos

The top issues for Latino voters in the United States are immigration, the economy, health care and education. Rarely do issues pertaining to the Middle East register a blip in the polling of Latino voters, except for when it comes to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

So why are pro-Israel groups spending more and more resources courting Latino elected officials, community leaders and students?

In the US, a Latino, often equated with Hispanic, refers to a person who can trace his or her origin to Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Central or South America. Mexican-Americans are the largest Latino group in the US and sometimes refer to themselves as Chicanos.

As the Latino population and electorate continue to grow, along with this population’s impact on national elections, an aggressive lobby is working to ensure that Latinos view and adopt a clearly pro-Israel stance on the question of Palestine despite strong grassroots sympathy with the plight of Palestinians.

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