Billionaire George Soros plans to donate $5 million to a campaign by liberals that will spend $15 million to attract Latino voters to the Democrats for the upcoming elections in November. Democrats hope to take advantage of Hispanic anger over remarks made by Republican front runner Donald Trump, who called Latino immigrants rapists and thieves, according to an article in The New York Times . He also called for a wall between Mexico and the United States, and said he would force Mexico to pay for the construction.
Democrats say this will be the largest effort to date to court Latino voters. They hope to get left-leaning voters to actually vote, and to persuade the swing voters. The campaign, called Immigrant Voters Win, will spend in Colorado, Florida and Nevada, all state with significant Latino populations. Democrats say there are enough Latino voters in those states to actually sway those states in a close election.
Conservatives have their own PAC aimed at Latino voters, called Libre Initiative, and it will spend $10 million that they received from the Koch Brothers.
The donation by Soros is part of a return to politics for him, as he has already donated $13 million in this election cycle. He was very involved in the 2004 election, helping organize a $200 million campaign in an effort to unseat President George Bush. Since then his donations have been geared more towards specific social issues and less overtly political campaigns.
Latino voters may seem like an easy target, but Democrats still feel there is work to do. Some Latinos have expressed disappointment that President Barak Obama did not deliver on a promise of immigration overhaul, and the current administration has deported a lot of poeple. Latino political organizers also say the Democratic party has not funded them adequately in the past, leaving them unable to do all they would like.
Soros is one of the richest men in the world, and he made his fortune with international finance. Soros, who is Jewish, grew up in Hungary, and was in hiding from Nazi occupation in World War II. In 1947 he went to England to study at the London School of Economics. He moved to the United States in the early 1950s where he started his international finance, and hedge fund company.
Soros said the tone of the current political cycle has caused him to get more involved. He said the Republican, especially coming from Trump, anti immigration and anti Muslim talk has been offensive. He feels it is harmful to the national interests and to democracy itself. He believes there should be consequences for taking such stands, and he hopes he can encourage Latinos to get out and vote an make that happen by electing Democrats.