Douthat dissects a talking point:

George W. Bush won a larger-than-average share of the Hispanic vote because he campaigned as a center-right figure in general, not because of his particular focus on amnesty for illegal immigrants. John McCain won a smaller-than-average share because the Republican brand was tarnished in 2008 in general, not because the failure of comprehensive immigration reform had poisoned the well with Hispanic voters. And in 2012, there’s no reason to think that a more polarizing candidate like Gingrich will be able to compensate for turning off swing voters by cleaning up among Hispanics: If he can’t win white independents and white conservative Democrats, he probably won’t be able to win Latino independents either.