DONALD TRUMP AND THE LATINO VOTE: PART I

In the last week or two a lot has been said, and written, about the fact that President Trump seems to be doing very well among Latino voters.

Based on the commentaries I’ve seen/read, this is very confusing to some media people.  They have difficulty understanding why – especially given President Trump’s hard line on illegals crossing the border from Mexico/Central America.

I think I can help out.

Here, in its entirety, is the first of two blogs I wrote almost two years ago – this one on October 14, 2018 – discussing Republican prospects for Latino votes.  (My next blog will be a reprint of what I wrote on November 16th, 2018).

Please read it – especially if you are one of those confused media folks – and see if you think it makes any sense:

THE LATINO VOTE

It is happening again.  Democrats are – or at least seem to be – assuming they have the Latino vote wrapped up.

And why not?  After all, Democrats are pro-“immigration” (legal or otherwise) and pro-sanctuary-city, aren’t they?  And Latino voters, being the monolithic leftward people they are, will come running to support Democrats everywhere because of those positions, right?

Uh, not so fast.

While it is true that, in party affiliation, far more Latinos voters register as Democrats than as Republicans.   But Latino approval for Donald Trump – thus, it can be imputed, Republicans – has risen substantially.   And that can translate into more Republican votes on election day.

Why would that be?  Well, let’s think about this.

Most Latino people, like most people in every other racial/ethnic/geographic group, want their families to do well. They want to live in a peaceful environment, earn a decent living, send their children to good schools, and, generally, live the American Dream.

-Where is it written that this includes having unvetted illegals streaming into their communities with no cultural ties to the United States – including violent gang members and drug dealers who want to recruit their children for that activity (if they have not been vetted, how can this be prevented)?  Why would anyone assume a preponderance of Latino people are OK with this idea, and with a political party that seems to support it?

-Why would it not follow that if, during the Trump administration, Latino unemployment drops to record lows, at least some Latino people credit Mr. Trump/Republicans for it happening?

-And this, of course, is before we get to the fact that a great many Latino citizens tend to have religious and social views more in line with the Republican Party than with Democrats.

Put these factors together and I doubt there will be any massive sea change in the way Latinos people, as an overall group will be voting. But, more realistically, there is likely to be some change.  And even a small movement by Latino – and Black – voters – from the Democrat party…say, 10%….is enough to make a huge change in the political structure of the United States.

Look at California as an example.  Latinos comprise almost 40% of the state’s overall population.  If, in a given election cycle, 10% of Latinos vote Republican instead of Democrat, it would mean 4% more Republican votes and 4% less Democrat votes statewide – a swing of 8%.  And in districts with larger Latino populations, that swing would, of course, be accordingly larger.

Could this change the political dynamic of the state – maybe result in more Republican officeholders and less Democrats?  Of course it could.

And how about Illinois, with a Latino population of about 16%?   A 10% switch would yield 1.6% more Republican votes and 1.6% fewer Democrat votes.  Given the closeness of statewide races in Illinois, that overall swing of 3.2% could easily change who wins and who loses…with the possibilities in individual congressional districts are at least as high.

If this trend maintains, or increases, does it present a problem for Democrats and an opportunity for Republicans?  Obviously, the answer is yes.

Let’s keep our eyes on this – particularly in next month’s midterm elections.

 

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