Conflict & Justice

The Latino vote

(What do we know about how the Latino turnout was on Tuesday and how do we know it?) There were several reports that said the Latino vote held constant, meaning they're still about 8-9% of the total vote in the U.S, meaning they also turned out in bigger numbers. In Florida where Latinos usually vote more Republican, we saw an interesting change where the Cuban-Americans born in the U.S. went heavily for Obama which accounted for the increase of about 57% of Latinos in Florida going for Obama. There's an interesting exit poll which shows how the ethnicities of Florida voted and it shows that the Venezuelans voted heavily for McCain, but the rest of Latin Americans went 70% for Obama. Those born in Cuba went for McCain to about 70%, those are the older refugees who are heavily anti-Castro, so Obama's openness to talk has been a reason not to vote for him and it trumps concerns of the economy. (Let's talk about Nevada, another state where new Latino voters were expected to have a big impact.) According to the consortium exit poll, one in ten voters was a new voters and 70% of them voted for Obama, and most of them were Latinos. (Are these people who have been in the U.S. for a long period or are they mostly new residents?) Nevada is one of the states with a lot of new Latino voters and the Democratic Party focused on citizenship and then voter registration and then turnout. We don't know exactly the share of new voters but Latino voters increased by 60% and that's probably mostly new voters. The Pew report which just came out shows that in the states where the Obama campaign focused on getting out the vote, the share of Latino votes increased more than in other states. The Latino vote was more than double in Colorado from the last election, and that number was true in Nevada and New Mexico as well. There was a lot of money spent on radio and television and that hasn't happened before.

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(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.)

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