Republicans in Arizona are recruiting and grooming young Hispanic conservatives to run for office in a bid to ensure the state stays firmly in the GOP column.
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Party leaders are embracing faces they hope will have the same crossover appeal as Govs. Susana Martinez of New Mexico and Brian Sandoval of Nevada, GOP rock stars who can speak more compassionately about immigration and the border, and communicate Republican values to Hispanics.
The GOP has dominated Arizona politics for decades — Republicans have won the Grand Canyon State in every modern presidential contest but one. But now, the party is bracing for a wave of Hispanics, who already comprise more than 30 percent of the population and have been turning deep-red Arizona increasingly blue.