Latino Voters Overwhelmingly Choose Obama Over GOP Candidates
Fox News poll indicates a serious problem for Republicans among Hispanics
You don’t have to tell Latino voters that the Republican Party isn’t courting its support aggressively enough.
On Monday, Fox News Latino released the results of its poll, in which show Hispanic voters overwhelmingly support President Barack Obama over his GOP presidential opponents in the 2012 election.
The national poll of “likely Latino voters” indicates 73 percent approve of Obama’s performance during his first term, specifically his handling of the healthcare reform debate and his administration’s jobs plan.
According to poll results, not one of the Republican canidates -- former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, Congress Ron Paul (R-Texas), former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum – can clear 14 percent of support in head-to-head matchups with Pres. Obama.
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Ouch! That’s bad news for the Republican Party, but it didn’t come without warning.
The boom in the U.S. Latino population has long been considered the elephant in the room for the country’s political parties, both struggling to court enough of the vote to swing elections in its favor.
The Fox News Latino report also comes on the heels of a Pen Hispanic Center study, which indicates most Latinos feel they were hit the hardest by the economic downturn and jobs crisis (54% surveyed say Latinos were hurt more, 38% say they were hurt the same as other groups, 5% say they were hurt less).
Latino voters may remember the presidential debates leading up to the Florida primary, where a few candidates advocated a English-only government, “self deportation,” and accused fellow candidates of harboring anti-immigrant sentiment.
Another poll also shows Latino, almost irrespective of political ideology, support the DREAM Act and other path to citizenship plans on which Republican candidates have not been particularly resolute.
The bottom line here, any candidate hope to win the Hispanic vote must square these issues and speak to that voting bloc in a meaningful way. Even Pres. Obama has work to do in that area, the polls suggest.