Saralegui steps up

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Among celebrity endorsements, it reads rather like the punch line to a joke – maybe the one about the president who couldn’t get A-list support and had to resort to daytime talk show hosts whose guests sometimes punched one another. Or, the one about the guy who was desperate to cozy up to Latino voters in hopes of winning a second term.

But, “Obama for America” wasn’t joking last month when it announced the endorsement of Emmy award-winning talk show host and community leader, Cristina Saralegui. Referring to the controversial syndicated talk show host as “a seasoned journalist who is recognized as one of the most respected and influential role models in the Hispanic community,” “Obama for America” campaign manager, Jim Messina, proudly announced that this is the first time Saralegui has endorsed a president or actively participated in a presidential campaign. 

Saralegui’s El Show de Cristina has been an Hispanic television staple for 21 years, especially among fans of daytime bitch fights and chair-throwing squabbles. Topics like “Who’s your baby’s daddy?” and “My sister’s butt was injected with tire sealant!” were among Saralegui’s most popular.

“I came to this country when I was 12 years old because my parents wanted to give me the opportunity to succeed. Since then, I have sat back and watched many elections come and go, but it wasn’t until this election, and because of what I see in President Obama and know he’s accomplished, that I decided to get involved,” says Saralegui regarding her support for Obama.

Saralegui insists that Obama understands the Hispanic community and that he has supported it unconditionally. She says so in a bilingual video, released by the “Obama for America” campaign last month.

“This is a critical time for our country and for the Hispanic community,” Saralegui says of her decision to make the pro-Obama video. “Hispanics could very well decide the next election, and I will do everything I can from now until November to ensure that President Obama is re-elected; there’s simply too much at stake. President Obama, I was very fortunate to live the American dream and I know that only you will make it possible for millions more to do the same. You’ve had our back, and now, with utmost respect and admiration, I have yours.”  

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