The 1994 proposal to limit public services for undocumented immigrants – an idea approved by most California voters – was struck down in court and, later, became a political drag for the GOP. In the decades since Prop. 187, the GOP’s clout in California has been in decline, as Latinos now overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. “The use of the immigration dog-whistle runs greater risks than in the past,” said Louis DeSipio, a professor of political science at UC Irvine.

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