According to a Reuters/Issos tracking poll posted on Reuters, Hispanics are more interested in voting this year than in the 2014 midterm elections, and their enthusiasm outpaces all U.S. adults as well.
The poll also found that likely Hispanic voters were nearly twice as inclined to favor Democrats over Republicans in House of Representatives contests in Tuesday’s election. Most opinion polls and political handicappers expect the Democrats wot win the 23 seats they need to assume control of the House, and Latinos could play a crucial role in several races.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 36 percent of Hispanic voters said they were “certain” to vote, when only 27 percent answered that way in 2014. The 9 percent increase in Hispanic voting certainty is almost twice the 5 percent rise among all Americans over the same time period. Much of that improvement is carried by Hispanic Democrats, where 43 percent are “certain” to vote compared to only 29 percent in 2014.
The polls showed significantly more political opposition to President Trump among Hispanic voters, as 53 percent of likely Hispanic voters said that they were “very likely” to pick Congressional candidates who oppose President Trump compared to only 43 percent of the general population.
America’s 29 million Latinos make up nearly 13 percent of eligible voters this year. However, the Pew Research Center shows that Latino turnout rate has declined since 2006. Only 27 percent of eligible Latinos voted in the 2014 midterm elections, with only 16 percent of Latino voters aged 18-35 casting their ballot.
Despite these gains and enthusiasm, there are some troubling indicators regarding potential voter Hispanic turnout in 2018. According to the Pew study, Hispanic voters are less likely than all U.S. voters to know the Congressional candidates in their district, while a full third of Hispanic voters also believe that “voting by people like me doesn’t really affect how government runs things.” Over half of Hispanics who are eligible to vote but have not registered say the same thing.
The Democratic party has lost ground with Hispanic voters over the past four years, as only 48 percent of registered Latino voters believe the Democratic Party has more concern for Latinos than the Republican Party compared to the 2015 high of 59 percent. That lost 11 percent now sees no difference between the two parties, an opinion that has grown among registered Latino voters from 22 percent in 2015 to 33 percent today. The percentage of registered Latino voters who believe the Republican Party has more concern for Latinos than the Democratic Party has grown slightly, from 12 percent to 14 percent.
There are significant differences in how affiliated registered Latino voters see their own party. Latino Democrats believe their party has more concern for them at a rate of 72 percent, while only 45 percent of Latino Republican voters believe the Republican Party has more concern for them.