POLITICS
05/13/2013 11:44 pm ET | Updated May 14, 2013

Pablo Pantoja Turns Democrat: RNC Florida Hispanic Director Cites GOP 'Intolerance' In Making Party Switch

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Less than two months after the Republican National Committee announced a multi-million dollar campaign to improve minority outreach, one of its state Hispanic directors is leaving the Republican Party altogether.

In a letter released by The Florida Nation on Monday, RNC State Director Of Florida Outreach Pablo Pantoja announced that he is changing his political affiliation to the Democratic Party.

"It doesn’t take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today," he wrote. "I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others. Look no further; a well-known organization recently confirms the intolerance of that which seems different or strange to them."

Back in March, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus announced that the organization was investing $10 million to send hundreds of workers into Hispanic, black and Asian communities to improve standing with voters. Here in May, questions continue to linger whether a line of amendments proposed by Republican voices will derail immigration reform, and subsequently dampen chances for improving relations with minority voters.

Pantoja is not the first Republican in the Sunshine State to recently change their party affiliation. Back in December, former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist moved over from the GOP to the Democratic Party, hailing how he was "proud and honored" to make the switch. Democrats eked out a 2012 presidential election win in Florida, with President Barack Obama defeating GOP challenger Mitt Romney by less than 75,000 votes.

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