The Spanish expression for “to patronize” is, “tratar a alguien con condescendencia.”
Now, when President Obama just happens to give a speech in favor of immigration reform, and its intended audience knows he knows there’s nothing he can really do about it--given this Congress and the current public mood--it doesn’t matter if he’s treating them with condescencia or not; that’s they way they’re going to read it.
It doesn’t help that the speech came just as the polls show that Obama’s support with Latino voters is slipping a few months before the November election, when all Democratic hands are on deck to minimize the inevitable losses.
People get ticked off when they think they’re being taken for fools. It’s an affront to their dignidad. They went along on this ride the first time around, and now they’re being asked to get back up on the bronc after it already threw them into the mud and rode off into the sunset without them.
The political calculus in the White House is that Latinos aren’t going to suddenly vote Republican; the principles of that party are inimical to Latino self-interest. But they are worried they’ll stay home on election day out of disgust with the way they and their issues have been kicked to the back of the line. Hence, bring out the old silver tongue and woo them once more.
Words are nice, but action is all that counts at this point. The word in Spanish for “word” is “palabra.” Interestingly, there's a cognate to that in English: “palaver.”