Snapshot Series Número Uno — In One Chart : “Why Republicans Are Suddenly Sending Flowers To Hispanic Voters”
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One chart tells perhaps our country’s biggest demographic story going forward from this election, particularly for Republicans. Note, the story is not a new one. Hispanic population growth has been on a sustained upswing for forty years and, importantly (especially for the GOP), the Hispanic proportion of our nation’s population has also grown, from 3% in 1970 to 17% today.
How wide is the chasm between the GOP and Hispanic voters? Well, first, the percentage of Hispanic registered voters has grown just as their overall population has increased. But there’s more. Here’s the double whammy facing the GOP: the percentage of that growing number of potential voters who actually vote has also grown, 2004, 7%; 2008, 8%, and 2012, 10%.3
And here’s the triple whammy: the percentage of white potential and registered voters who actually vote has declined over the same period. Now that’s arithmetic with electoral muscle, and recall that Republicans aren’t very good at arithmetic . . . Oh, by the way,
Latinos voted for President Barack Obama over Republican Mitt Romney by 71% to 27%, according to an analysis of exit polls by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center.4
Frankly, if the GOP expects to attract Hispanic voters, for starters, they’ll have to stop demonizing them. They’ll need to wake up to facts, and accept that we are now a multicultural country. We are not a multicultural country “to be.” GOP policies in general and particular are insulting to this large, vibrant, loyal, and g-r-o-w-i-n-g group of Americans, who, as we can see, want to vote. To reach this group, the GOP will need to transform itself more radically than any time in its history. To be candid, they’ll need to become more . . . Democratic.
- Redistricting Data, U.S. Census, 2010 Census Data. ↩
- Distribution of U.S. Population by Race/Ethnicity, 2010 and 2050, Kaiser Family Foundation, March 22, 2010. ↩
- The Hispanic vote in 2012 and beyond, (Guest Columnist, unidentified), Nov. 15, 2012 ↩
- Latino Voters in the 2012 Election, Pew Research Center, Pew Hispanic Center, Nov. 7, 2012. ↩