msnbc | September 20, 2012
>>> mitt romney would raise taxes on middle class families to cut his own and mine. that's not who we are as a nation. let me tell you why, because the eva longoria who worked at wendy's flipping burgers, she needed a tax break . but the eva longoria who works on movie sets does not. [ cheers and applause ]
>> actress and obama re- election campaign co-chair, eva longoria bringing the crowd to its feet at last month's democratic national convention . the star criticized the republican candidate for being out of touch of everything, to the pursuit of what many latinos define as the american dream . now mitt romney is trying to publicly persuade latino voters he's on their side on many issues including immigration.
>> for those that are already here and that are undocumented, that were brought in here by their parents and, therefore, are illegal aliens in this country, my view is we should put in place a permanent solution.
>> as we mentioned at the top of the hour, president obama will speak at that same univision and facebook forum today. joining me is eva longoria joining me to talk more about what we're seeing on the campaign trail. as we look at the polls, the president has 70% to 60% hispanic support, especially many terms of immigration. when we hear what mitt romney has to say about softening his stance on the highly controversial remarks he made about self-deportation and remarks about immigration itself, should latinos believe him?
>> it's interesting you say that. in the primaries he had a very sharp rhetoric about it. now he's in the general election he's kind of softened it. mitt romney is on the wrong side of every issue that pertains to latinos . he called the arizona sb- 1070 law a model for the country. so he's not exactly living in reality within the latino community. there's a reason why latinos are leaning towards president obama seven to one, and that's because he has done so much for our community. and our community is disproportionately affected by policies in washington. by doubling the pell grants , 150,000 more hispanics are able to go to college. through the affordable care act , 9 million more hispanics will have access to affordable health care . by cutting small business taxes 18 times, this directly affects hispanic communities because we're very entrepreneurial and latinas open businesses six times the national average. obama has done a lot. especially with immigration. he's done this special executive order to keep dreamers here and defer the deportation if they were brought here through no fault of their own. it's interesting that mitt romney is agreeing with president obama . president obama would do something more permanent if he had the cooperation of congress.
>> with 47 days to go, it really is important to see how this race is tightening up when it comes to the latino community. so many watching this feel they'll have such an important effect on how the election turns out. romney said earlier in the year he would go after 38% of the latino vote. unemployment vote among latinos is 10%. that's above the national average. do you think president obama is vulnerable there and that is a soft spot for him?
>> i think, like i said, all of the policies affect minority communities disproportionately, african-americans and hispanics and women. so i think that -- is there a soft spot ? people think latinos have -- that we only care about immigration. immigration is pretty far down the list when it comes to our concerns. we care about the economy, we care about jobs, we care about education, we care about health care , all before immigration reform . so we're american, and so we care about the american issues. i think obama is addressing them.
>> eva, before i let you go, on friday you'll be returning the the co-hosting duties of the 2012 alma awards . natalie morales will be there as a presenter. tell us about the show and do you think it's going to be a little political?
>> we do have messages from mitt romney and president obama in the show. they recognize how important the hispanic vote is. they both made a presence. but the alma awards are an amazing fun, star-packed show. we have some beautiful tributes, we have a tribute to christina aguilera this year. we also have a tribute to the american latino olympians who medaled in the olympics. you saw their stories being told, daniel leyva, ryan lochte and how they are living the ultimate american dream by bringing home gold or silver or bronze for the united states . making sure that we live in an america where that dream is possible is a beautiful thing. we also have some great performances, flo-rida and, of course, george lopez and i are co-hosting. a celebration of positive imagetion of latinos in the media.
>> keep george in check.
>> we have to have the censure button ready all the time.
>>> just a reminder for everybody, tune in and you can see eva host with george lopez the alma awards only on nbc.