Villaraigosa slams Republican efforts to woo Latinos: 'Can't just trot out a brown face or a Spanish surname'

Mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa

Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

File photo: Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in L.A. In Tampa, Villaraigosa told reporters Republicans can't use Latino speakers to swing Latino voters to their side.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa says Republican efforts to use Latino speakers at the GOP national convention to win over Latino voters won't work.

Villaraigosa told reporters Tuesday that the GOP "can't just trot out a brown face or a Spanish surname" and expect Latinos to vote Republican. He called that window dressing.

He said a party's policies are more important, adding that the GOP platform calls for the self-deportation of 11 million people. The Republican platform supports tougher policies to staunch illegal immigration.

Latinos heavily supported President Barack Obama in the 2008 election. Polls show him leading with that group this year over GOP challenger Mitt Romney.

Villaraigosa is in Tampa as part of a Democratic effort to highlight their views during the GOP gathering.

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