RNC launches Hispanic outreach effort

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The Hispanic state directors will develop grassroots infrastructure and engage in Hispanic outreach in California, Florida, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. 

The RNC, in concert with state parties, says it plans to establish a "year-round presence in Latino neighborhoods" to further strengthen outreach efforts. By the end of the year, the RNC plans to make similar investments in Hispanic outreach in 11 other states.

The GOP has historically faced difficulty wooing minorities but 2012 was a disastrous year for the party. President Obama won 71 percent of the Hispanic vote, compared to 27 percent for his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney.  

The RNC, in a 2012 election post-mortem report, listed Hispanic outreach as a particular area of concern for the party as it plots its future.

Hispanic-Americans are one of the nation's fastest-growing minority groups, and analysts believe if Republicans don't make inroads with that demographic, they'll find it impossible to be competitive in some states and in presidential races.

In a statement, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus described the effort as "unprecedented" for the GOP. 

“This off-cycle effort will ensure our message of ‘opportunity for all’ reaches voters. We are building a ground game that will allow us to compete for every voter and will outlast any one cycle or campaign," he said. "I’m certain with these early and unprecedented investments we can achieve Republican victories up and down the ballot now and for years to come.”

Updated at 2:05 p.m.