A poll worker drops in drive-through ballots into a ballot box as fourteen states including California hold primaries on Super Tuesday in San Diego, California, on March 3, 2020.

Latino voters could determine the outcome of Super Tuesday. Here's how.

Latinos' rapid growth as a voting bloc means 2020 will likely be the first election where Latinos comprise the largest minority voting group. Super Tuesday will be the first major test of their influence.

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A poll worker drops in drive-through ballots into a ballot box as fourteen states including California hold primaries on Super Tuesday in San Diego, California, on March 3, 2020.

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Mike Blake/Reuters

Fourteen states comprising 40% of the US population are holding their primaries for the Democratic presidential race March 3 — also known as Super Tuesday. 

A big chunk of the Democrats’ delegates is up for grabs. Super Tuesday’s outcome could determine which candidate wins the Democratic party nomination. 

Latino voters could have a big impact on Super Tuesday and in November: Their rapid growth as a voting bloc means it will likely be the first election where Latinos comprise the largest minority voting group, with a projected 13.3% of the electorate, according to the Pew Research Center. California alone holds roughly a quarter of the nation’s Latino electorate, with 7.9 million Latino eligible voters. Texas is second with 5.6 million. 

California and Texas also offer the most Super Tuesday delegates, followed by North Carolina.

Joining The World’s Marco Werman to discuss Latino voters on Super Tuesday are Stella Chávez at KERA in Dallas, Texas; Max Rivlin-Nadler at KPBS in San Diego, California; and Naomi Prioleau at WUNC in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. 

They are part of “Every 30 Seconds,” a collaborative public media reporting project led by The World that traces the young Latino electorate leading up to the 2020 presidential election and beyond. Approximately every 30 seconds, a Latino in the US turns 18 and becomes eligible to vote. 

Related: Every 30 seconds, a Latino in the US turns 18. Their votes count more than ever.

Here’s what they had to say. 

Stella Chávez, Texas

“Some candidates definitely were [seeking Latino voters]. We saw the Sanders campaign mobilizing a lot of young Latinos in Texas. He's had huge turnouts at his rallies, but he's also getting the attention of older Latinos. And he's not the only one. We're also seeing a ton of ads on TV and social media from Bloomberg. We’ve even seen a lot of Bloomberg ads on Spanish-language television.” 

Max Rivlin-Nadler, California 

“Yeah, it's a pretty similar style [in California]. Bernie has definitely paid attention to the youth vote, but he's not solely focused on that. He's also looking at their parents. So this is a really great example of what the Sanders campaign has been doing in California, which is at a rally at San Ysidro High School back in December. San Ysidro High School is just around maybe 10 miles from the border. He had the mariachi band from the school itself — so a bunch of high schoolers — play. And when you invite the youth to play, their parents come to see them give a performance and all of a sudden you have their parents at a political event as well.”

Naomi Prioleau, North Carolina 

“You know, it's actually the opposite of what's been going on in California and Texas. When candidates come over to North Carolina, and, you know, the Carolinas in general and the South, they're more focused on the black vote. It's like they compartmentalize. They think California, Texas definitely need to push for the Latino vote. But then when they come here, it's more focused on the black vote because there is so much history here and they don't focus on Latinos at all. We have a lot of Latinos in Charlotte, but then we also have a lot of them in rural communities.” 

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