A crowd of more than 25 young Latinos descended on downtown Los Angeles Monday morning to march in support of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act before Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney addressed the 33rd annual national convention of the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
The protesters—some traveling to Los Angeles from as far as Arizona to attend the march—carried American flags and posters painting Romney as an anti-immigrant, anti-LGBT candidate.
"I was going to go to school this morning and I heard on the radio—on NPR—about how Romney was coming to town to talk to Latino voters and businessmen trying to get Latino votes," said El Salvadorian Alex Chavarria.
"I thought that this might be my one chance to come out and say something."
According to excerpts of Romney's speech, the Republican presidential nominee blames the 10 percent unemployment rate among Latinos on President Barack Obama.
"For years, Republicans and Democrats seem to have been more interested in playing politics with immigration than with actually fixing it," the speech excerpts read.
But elected Latino officials say they know where the Michigan governor stands on getting unemployed Latinos back to work.
"We need to invest in a president who invests in us," said Earnie Gutierrez, chairman of the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce, in a press conference held outside of the convention center earlier in the morning.
L.A. City Councilman Ed Reyes said that Romney wants to deport Latino immigrants.
"Romney is only beginning to explain ... his vision of immigration," said Reyes.