During the March 19 edition of Andrea Mitchell Reports, actress Eva Longoria fielded softball questions about her new role in President Obama’s re-election campaign. During the interview, Mitchell had no problem with reminding MSNBC viewers about the so-called Republican War on Women, chiding, "But the women's issues, women's health issues have become front and center force of what has happened on the Republican side."
Longoria was also given a chance to attack Republicans, sneering that Mitt Romney is "probably the one on the wrong side of every issue pertaining to Latinos, education, the economy, health care access....He's calling the anti-immigration law from Arizona a model law for the rest of this- the country."Rather than ask questions about President Obama’s views on issues such as the economy, foreign policy, or immigration, Mitchell reflected on President Obama’s plan to win over the Hispanic vote by informing viewers that President Obama has appointed seven Latino co-chairs. Mitchell also took the opportunity to remind viewers that Longoria had been profiled on NBC Nightly News.
It's hard to believe that, had Mitchell been interviewing a celebrity co-chair of a Republican's presidential campaign, she would opt to avoid any tough questions.
You can read the full interview below.
Andrea Mitchell Reports
1:34 p.m. EDT
March 19, 2012
ANDREA MITCHELL, host: With the Hispanic vote poised to become a deciding factor in key states like Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada, the Obama campaign is now deploying some star power to sell its message to Latinos. Eva Longoria’s shot to fame of course playing is Gabriel Solis on the TV show "Desperate Housewives." But now, she is embracing her new role as a national co-chair for President Obama’s re-election campaign. And she joins me now. So nice to meet you.
EVA LONGORIA, actress: Nice to meet you–
MITCHELL: You were very involved in the last election campaign--
MITCHELL: four years ago. But you're taking a larger role now. What is your main you know, purpose and how do you see yourself being helpful to the candidate?
LONGORIA: Well, I was asked to be a co-chair. Uh, And my, my roles are to engage and mobilize the voters specifically with the Latino community and women's community. Those are two areas of interest I-I participate in heavily am pretty literate about. So, uh, that’s what I’ll be doing. I'll be going to swing states.
MITCHELL: And, in fact, you know a lot about health care I know. And you, we in fact, profiled you on NBC Nightly News because of what you're doing with special needs–
MITCHELL: special needs community. But the women's issues, women's health issues have become front and center force of what has happened on the Republican side. And now in Texas, interestingly, Governor Perry has turned back $35 million for Planned Parenthood preventive programs, including pap tests and mammograms and Texas as you know better than I has I think it's your home state has the highest number of uninsured women.
LONGORIA: Yeah, It is.
MITCHELL: Do you think this is going to become a mobilizing force?
LONGORIA Yeah, I think. Absolutely. I think the election is going to be about choice and its going to be pretty clear for women uh who's on their side, regarding uh, uh, their healthcare issues. There is an attack on women's healthcare um, and President Obama's policies are the only ones that are going to that forward or move the agenda for women's rights. There's so much dismantling of what we've accomplished as women uh, by the right side. And so uh, I'm going to be out there and campaigning for him. I think uh, one of the things about the Affordable Care Act that just came out was that the gender rating for women, we're charged more because we go to the doctors more. And the Affordable Care Act will eliminate the gender rating for insurers that they won’t be able to that. And that’s important. And I think women need to be educated on everything that Obama has done in his first term regarding their rights and access to health care.
MITCHELL: Now,there are, one of the striking things that is quite noticeable is that there are 7, 7 co-chairs who are Latino.
LONGORIA: That's not a mistake, you know?
MITCHELL: That is absolutely targeting 16.3% of the population. Now, Mitt Romney had this to say after winning Puerto Rico on his chances of doing very well with Hispanic voters.
MITT ROMNEY, Republican presidential candidate: Those people who don't think that Latinos will vote for a Republican need to look in Puerto Rico and see there the conservative principles and Latino voters go together and Hispanic voters are going to vote for Republicans if we stand for something, conservative principles that bring growth and good jobs and rising home values. That's why we're going won-win, we’re going to get Latino val-voters to help us out.
MITCHELL: Now, George W. Bush did very well with in his first election with Latino-with Hispanic voters.
LONGORIA: Yeah, But George W. Bush-Right.
MITCHELL: And that of course has gone down.
LONGORIA: He's also from the state of Texas. Which is the second, two of the largest, California and Texas, largest Hispanic populations, he has the Hispanic vote. He was also the closet to immigration reform, George W. Bush. And was–
MITCHELL: Do you think that immigration reform is the issue that has–
LONGORIA: Well I want to speak to the clip, because the clip is really interesting. That he makes a huge generalization because he won the primary so Republican voters, Puerto Rican voters, Republicans who live in Puerto Rico voted for him is a huge generalization he's going to get the latino vote. 63% of Latinos in America are Mexican-American. Uh, there's Cuban Americans, there’s Central Americans and of all the candidates, Mitt Romney is probably the one on the wrong side of every issue pertaining to Latinos, education, the economy, healthcare access. He's campaigning with -- he's calling the anti-immigration law from Arizona a model law for the rest of this– the country. He's campaigning with the author of it. That is polarizing to Latinos. He wants to veto the D.R.E.A.M. Act if he was in office. That is dangerous for our community. And Obama for me is the only one that understands that the success of the future of America is intricately tied to the success of the Hispanic community.
MITCHELL: There have been many–many Hispanic leaders in the last couple years who have been disappointed in the President for not doing more on immigration reform.
LONGORIA: Yeah, And its an a problem. Immigration Reform has been on the national agenda for three administrations. So people like to–
MITCHELL: Even longer.
LONGORIA: Even longer. And it does need to be fixed. And it's broken. Nobody wants illegal immigration. And I think the misconception is Latinos are for illegal immigration. That is not true. Unfortunately, he can’t, Obama can’t do it by himself. And I know there's disappointment in the Latino community but what he has done, what he can do, he's proposed changes to keep families together. He has reallocated resources from the Department of Homeland Security to focus on deporting criminals, not D.R.E.A.M. Act students. Um, So he’s done what he’s what he can do without having his hands tied by Congress. So, I think also because the GOP primary has been so long, all we've heard is attacks on his record and that's what I'm going to be doing as a co-chair is getting out there and showing the great things about – about what he's done in his first term. And Latinos need to hear it.
MITCHELL: Eva Longoria, thank you very much. We appreciate your coming today.
LONGORIA Thank you.