Republicans appointed Pablo Pantoja to State Director of Florida Hispanic Outreach for the Republican National Committee, hoping that he would be able to make gains in the sizable gap during the 2012 elections, when the state’s 4.7 million Hispanic voters supported Barack Obama over Mitt Romney by a 20 percent margin.
But in the wake of the Heritage Foundation’s widely criticized study on immigration reform, along with GOP inaction on the issue, Pantoja announced via email that he was leaving the party and registering as a Democrat.
Below is an excerpt from Pantoja’s email:
Yes, I have changed my political affiliation to the Democratic Party.
It doesn’t take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today. I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others. Look no further; a well-known organization recently confirms the intolerance of that which seems different or strange to them.
In the email, Pantoja goes on to directly mention Jason Richwine, the co-author of the discredited Heritage study who in previous writings and comments suggested that Hispanics are at a permanent disadvantage because they have lower IQs, as the final straw that led to his decision.