Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Obama supporters step up effort to woo Hispanic, union voters

Barack Obama's supporters are launching renewed efforts to shore up support among two key constituencies - Hispanics and union members.

The AFL-CIO announced that, starting yesterday, it was sending mailers to more than 600,000 union households in the key battleground states of Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. "Union voters, like many voters across the country, are still learning about Senator Obama and have heard many things - some true, some false," the AFL-CIO said.

So one mailer tries to dispel the false rumors that Obama is Muslim, that he used a Koran for his Senate swearing-in, that he will not wear a flag lapel pin, that he won't put his hand over his heart while reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, and that he wasn't born in the United States.

The other mailer features testimonials about his record on jobs, healthcare, and workers' rights.

Meanwhile, the Democratic National Committee and Obama's campaign yesterday announced a $20 million effort to mobilize Hispanic voters.

The campaign plans to spread the money in all 50 states but will emphasize their efforts in swing states such as Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and New Mexico, Temo Figueroa, the Latino vote director for the Obama campaign, said at a news conference. The campaign said the money will be spent on registering and mobilizing voters, advertisements, and online organizing. It also plans to put additional staff in the four states and aims to train about 500 Latino organizers.

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