World Bulletin/News Desk
President Barack Obama reveled in the support of Latino leaders on Friday and took a swipe at his election rival Mitt Romney for giving mixed messages on how to handle illegal immigration.
In an emotive speech to Hispanic public officials meeting in Florida, Obama reminded the friendly audience that Romney had promised to veto the DREAM Act, which would help the children of illegal immigrants win citizenship.
Obama told the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials conference that he chose last week to halt the possible deportations of 800,000 young illegal immigrants because Congress was stalling on the issue.
"I refused to keep looking young people in the eye, deserving young people in the eye, and tell them tough luck," he said, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd that gave Romney a cool reception the day before.
"Your speaker from yesterday has a different view. In a speech he said that when he makes a promise to you, he'll keep it. Well he has promised to veto the DREAM Act, and we should take him at his word," the Democratic president said.
"I'm just sayin'," he added, to laughter.
A poll released on Friday by Latino Decisions and America's Voice found Obama had a commanding lead over Romney among Hispanics in election battleground states including Florida, Colorado and Virginia.
In the five states combined, Obama leads Romney among Hispanics by 63 percent to 27 percent.
Obama's recent focus on immigration has helped perk up his campaign, which sagged earlier in June as economic bad news rolled in and the president committed a misstep by claiming that the struggling private sector was in fact doing fine.
A rise by former Massachusetts Governor Romney in the polls appeared to slow this week, although a Pew Research Center survey on Friday put Obama's lead at only 4 percentage points, from 7 points last May.
Romney's campaign suffered on Friday from new accusations about Bain Capital, where he made much of his $250 million fortune as a private equity executive in the 1980s and '90s.
The Washington Post reported that Bain invested in firms that specialized in relocating jobs done by American workers to new facilities in low-wage countries like China and India.
"(Romney) often says, 'I know why jobs come and why jobs go.' Well, yeah, one of the reasons they go is because you have firms who are counseling people on how to offshore and outsource their jobs, that's one reason they go, so, yeah, he knows a lot about it," Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod told reporters.
Obama received standing ovations from much of the crowd in Florida when he talked about healthcare reform and his decision not to target young illegal immigrants for deportation.
"This was an Obama crowd anyway. Even though Obama's not Latino, he hit on key cultural points - hardworking, education. That's something we wear on our sleeves," said Tony Cardenas, a Democratic city councilman from Los Angeles.
Obama also pledged to make overhauling U.S. immigration rules to better serve businesses and make life easier for families and workers core to his economic agenda in a second term.
But Hispanics are still upset at his failure to deliver on comprehensive immigration reform and Latinos have been badly hit by the slow economy.
"No election-year speech can cover up the president's job-killing policies that have led to 11 percent Hispanic unemployment and millions of Hispanics living in poverty," Romney campaign spokesperson Amanda Henneberg said.
There are more than 50 million people with Latin American roots living in the United States. Hispanics are the fastest-growing U.S. minority group and could decisively influence the presidential election result in November.
Romney angered many Hispanics during the Republican primary season by saying illegal immigrants could "self deport" out of the country. He changed his tone at the NALEO conference on Thursday, stressing immigration was essential to U.S. economic prosperity, but offered few details on his approach to dealing with those now living illegally in the country.
A Hispanic former member of Senator John McCain's 2008 presidential bid acknowledged on Friday that Romney was going to struggle to win votes from the Hispanic community.
"Obama giving my Democrat colleagues a lot more to work with, than Romney gave me yesterday at #NALEO. It ain't going to be easy, folks," Ana Navarro, who was McCain's national Hispanic co-chairwoman, wrote on Twitter.
All in all, there will be less than 18 months to negotiate, Michel Barnier says
Total number of fatalities in the Mediterranean since Jan. 1 is now 4,715, up by 1,148 compared to last year, IOM says
"Aleppo is a disgrace," she said in a speech to her conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, slamming Russian and Iranian support for the bombardment by Bashar al-Assad's regime.
In an address to the Security Council, which was holding talks on the country after at least 31 people died in weekend clashes, UN Special Representative to DR Congo Maman Sambo Sidikou spoke of a "sense of apprehension."
As German Chancellor Angela seeks the blessing from her party to run for a fourth consecutive term in general elections next year, here are seven pivotal moments in her career.
German electricity giants EON and RWE and Sweden's Vattenfall have argued that the government-ordered shutdown of the country's nuclear plants amounts to an "expropriation" of their assets.
The 83-year-old French-Polish national, who currently lives in France, did not attend the hearing where his lawyers will testify in his place, local media reported.
Hollande's office said Valls' resignation had been accepted.
11 of 36 bodies recovered so far have been identified and families notified, local authorities say
May will discuss the possibilities for post-Brexit free trade arrangements with the six GCC states -- Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, her office said.
Opposition accuses president and ruling party executives of trying to hold judiciary captive in order to stay in power
Authorities have stepped up antidrug patrols in the Gulf coast state, where cartels are responsible for a spike in crime.
Merkel, who has led Germany for 11 years, last month declared that she will run again for the country's top job but acknowledged that the poll will be "more difficult than any before it".
Police shooting of fleeing unarmed black man rattled the nation last year
Trump 'said horrible things about Muslims, horrible things about Mexican-Americans', Mayor de Blasio says
Italian president asks Matteo Renzi to delay resignation until country's 2017 budget is passed