By Geneva Sands - 06/18/12 02:32 PM EDT
Building on the president's announcement that the administration will stop deporting certain younger illegal immigrants, the Obama campaign sought to boost its support among Hispanic voters, releasing Web videos Monday in English and Spanish featuring a message of support from Saralegui.
Saralegui praised Obama as a "principled man" that believes that everyone who "works hard and plays by the rules, should have a fair shot at the American dream."
"This is a critical time for our country and for the Hispanic community. 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," she added.
The Cuban-born Saralegui, dubbed the "Hispanic Oprah," hosted a long-running show on Univisión and after its cancellation launched "Pa’lante con Cristina" on Telemundo, according to The Miami Herald. She was included in Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Hispanics in America" list in 2005.
Obama for America campaign manager Jim Messina touted Saralegui as "one of the most trusted names in the Hispanic community" in a statement.
"We're honored to have Cristina be a spokesperson for the campaign, speaking directly to Hispanic voters about the President's accomplishments," Messina said.
Obama's immigration policy change, announced Friday, could allow as many as 800,000 young illegal immigrants to remain in the country without fear of being deported, as well as work in the United States legally.
The administration shift comes as Obama faces a tough reelection fight against Republican Mitt Romney, and Hispanic voters in swing states will play a crucial role in the contest.
Romney criticized Obama's policy decision as an election-year scheme to win over Hispanic voters.
The presumptive GOP presidential nominee said politics played a "big part" in the administration's decision in an interview with CBS's "Face the Nation" Sunday.
"I think the timing is pretty clear," Romney said.