The first release from a new “comedy super PAC” features actress Rosie Perez blasting Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for his joke saying that he’d “have a better shot” at winning the election if he were Latino.
“Hispanics represent 17 percent of the population and account for less than 2 percent of all elected and appointed officials. The advantage is obvious,” Perez said in the ad, posted Monday at Actually.org. “Think of all our Hispanic-American presidents: From Jorge Washington to Jorge Bush, uno y dos. And who can forget Presidente Jimmy Smits,” a reference to Smits’ turn as Matt Santos on The West Wing.
Romney’s “joke” came during the infamous “47 percent” speech that surfaced earlier this year, as part of an anecdote about his father, George, being born in Mexico.
“Had he been born of Mexican parents, I’d have a better shot at winning this,” Romney said. “I say that jokingly, but it would be helpful to be Latino.”
In the video, Perez upped the ante, saying that if he were actually “a gay Latina,” Romney would have the election in the bag.
“Unfortunately for you, Mitt, you were cursed with the hard-knock life of growing up as the son of a wealthy governor and auto executive,” she said, before tearing up. “And when your father paid your way through private school, Harvard, Harvard Law, and bought your first car? I just can’t imagine how difficult that must have been for you.”
Actually is a collaboration between American Bridge 21st Century, a progressive super PAC and the the Jewish Council for Education and Research, (JCER) the group that produced Sarah Silverman’s “Great Schlep” campaign video in 2008.
In an Oct. 12 interview with MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, “Schlep” co-founder Mik Moore said Perez’s video was intended to bring to light of one of the Romney campaign’s worst traits.
“At the heart of it, this really gets to the Romney campaign’s effort to use racial resentment as a tool to move voters,” Moore said. “The lie here is that it would be much easier if he were Latino. This is the same kind of racial resentment you have when he says, ‘The poor are taken care of,’ or when he goes after [the poor] with this kind of welfare reform.”
Watch Lopez’s ad for Actually, which went live Monday, below.