Susana Martinez: Can a Latina Governor Be Anti-Illegal Immigration?

Andrew Mach, Christian Science Monitor, September 13, 2011

The announcement last week by New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R) that her paternal grandparents came to the US illegally brought national attention to a small but growing trend in American politics: the rise of the anti-illegal immigration Latino.

Since taking office last year, one of Governor Martinez’s top priorities has been repealing a state law that lets undocumented immigrants get a driver’s license–something legal only in New Mexico, Washington, and Utah. Martinez also signed an executive order earlier this year requiring state law enforcement officials to check the immigration status of criminal suspects.

Even before confirming the rumors about her lineage, Martinez had drawn criticism from immigrant advocacy groups for such policies. Her acknowledgment last week only heightened the backlash, with critics saying her politics are hypocritical given her background.

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With this slow growth of Latino Republicans comes a more conservative take on illegal immigration as well as new political calculations. Martinez won the gubernatorial election in 2010 despite losing the Hispanic vote.

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  • Dale Gribble

    Maybe Governor Martinez conceded to quickly or willingly the immigration status of her grandparents. According to one news report a paper in New Mexico searched census records from 1930 to determine that the Governor’s grandfather was on the census report as an Alien-no first papers. At the time “no first papers” indicated an alien who had not filed an intention to become a citizen, a requirement at the time for citizenship. If he was illegal he wasn’t “hiding in the shadows” about it. If that is all the census record shows I don’t see how that proves he was an illegal immigrants

  • Question Diversity

    She has already said no SB 1070 style bill for New Mexico, though she would sign salami slices that are parts of those kinds of bills. The reality is that she is the most right wing on immigration that the New Mexico state body politic can produce, at least on a statewide level.

  • Anonymous

    What hypocrisy? If my great grandfather was a train robber in the old West does that mean I can’t maintain that train robbery should be illegal?

  • highduke

    Read the 1st paragraph of the Wikipedia article on Vladislav Surkov then put 2 and 2 together and you’ll understand exactly how successful nationalists make use of minorities like Martinez. If any Tea Party candidate becomes president, WN will be able to raise its profile. Always say NO to miscegination as a personal choice, emphasize that it should be legal while promoting it in govt & media should be criminalized but work with every ethnic minority especially on immigration.

  • Randolph Carter

    This wise latina wants to boil the frog slowly.

  • Anonymous

    Anybody with common sense regardless of race and citizenship in any country, should be anti-illegal immigration. Immigration should be minimal, and what very little immigration does occur should occur legally. There should be a no tolerance rule for any illegal immigration.

  • Anonymous

    Makes sense to me. They are here now; they know they have a good thing going and they don’t want a new horde of invaders messing things up for them

  • olewhitelady

    Politicians want to get elected and re-elected. If Martinez is speaking against illegals, you can bet that both the Anglo and Latino segments of her electorate have been judged to be majority anti-illegal. And she probably spoke out about her grandparents to prevent some opponent from bringing it up as a ploy against her.

    I have great-grandparents who came here from England, Wales, and Holland. Most of my blood is German, and I’m also Irish and Scottish. None of this affects the fact that I’m an American.

  • Jack in Chicago

    Rome had many Germans leading German armies against the Germanic barbarian invasions in the 5th century A.D. – yeah, it’s possible and we have to always be on the look out for different people actually coming over to our side as opposed to lying and trying to infiltrate and destroy like the cursed Neo Conservatives did.

    I notice that higher caste Hispanic women are more likely to take our side as they know how brutal the lower class Hispanic/Mestizo men are in Latin America and in US barios.

    When there is a White Anglo guy husband and an Hispanic wife/mother – chances are the Hispanic woman wants to take the White American side.

  • Fr. John

    Analogies to train robbers don’t mesh.

    One CHOOSES to be a train robber. It is an act of morality.

    One IS the Race. That is why they have their largest group called, ‘La Raza.’

    The White Activists have a slogan: “ORION”

    Our Race is Our Nation.

    Only when we begin to realize this, and start seeing those who call us as ‘gringos’ in print, media, and on Univision TV, will we ever begin to grasp what it means to utter the phrase, “Remember the Alamo.”

    Hispanics in office? In the US?

    two words.

    NADA MAS.

  • Allisio Rex

    The fact is that Gov. Martinez is not a Latina at all. In order to be a Latino or Latina you have to be first Italian.

    Latin America is just a geographical location where language,originating from the Latin of Italy are spoken. This doesn’t imply that today’s residents have any Latin culture. On topic this Governor is just playing politics and do not believe for a minute that she’s a real Republican.