Democrat Party operatives and their liberal media allies are largely counting on election-day turnout from Hispanic and Latino voters in the 2018 midterm elections to help swing control of at least part of Congress back to the left.
To that end, they have played up the narrative of President Donald Trump as a bigoted, racist xenophobe for all that it is worth in the hopes that such racial divisiveness will drive turnout among the desired groups of voters — but that tactic doesn’t appear to be working as intended.
In a lengthy and rather panicked article from CNN, it was noted that a number of political consultants and pollsters on the left were witnessing “unsettling signs” that Democrats would not see a large enough turnout among Hispanics and Latinos on Election Day, and even if such voters did turn out to vote, it likely wouldn’t be because of Trump’s purportedly racist actions and statements.
This despite the at times false and incessant harping from the liberal media about Trump supposedly calling all Mexicans rapists, or his efforts to end the unconstitutional Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or his “zero tolerance” border policy that exposed how illegal immigrant children have been separated from their families at the border for years, among other embellishments and outright lies about Trump and immigration.
“I still think it’s a little too soon to push the panic button, but having said that, we are not seeing the types of numbers with Hispanic voters that we should be seeing with the most hostile person to ever hold public office against Hispanics as the President,” stated Fernand Amandi, of the Democratic polling firm Bendixen & Amandi International.
“And that in and of itself is a concern. I’m flabbergasted,” he added.
Indeed, internal polling among Democrat groups focused on Hispanic and Latino voters have found that there is very little excitement and engagement among such voters in critical House and Senate races in such states as Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada and Texas, particularly in specific districts that Democrats previously assumed were virtual locks.
Of course, some of the consultants and pollsters are brushing off the signs as no real cause for alarm and point to the typical Democrat advantage among minority voters as allowing for a bit of a drop off in turnout, which also tends to be rather low for minorities in midterm election years.
In fact, turnout among Hispanic and Latino voters in presidential election years rarely exceeds 50 percent of eligible voters, and turnout among that subset was a dismal one-third and one-quarter for the midterm years of 2010 and 2014, respectively. Similarly low turnout could doom Democrats this time around, and again, it won’t be because of Trump or even that Hispanics and Latinos are becoming Republicans, but merely that they are unexcited by the Democrat Party candidates.
Such was the takeaway from Matt Barreto, co-founder and managing partner of Latino Decisions, who stated, “I think that the turnout is not guaranteed and all of the candidates and the interest groups have a lot of work to do. They don’t want the anger to sit there and fester and turn into so much frustration that people don’t feel that there is anything they can do.”
Democrats are particularly concerned about the Senate race in Florida, where incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson is fending off a challenge from Republican Gov. Rick Scott, who has been “aggressively” reaching out to minority communities and will likely draw significant support from the state’s large Cuban community, enough to get past Nelson’s tenuous five-point lead in the polls.
Similarly, there is also concern with the Senate race in Texas, where Democrats hope a white man who is portrayed as Hispanic — Beto O’Rourke — can knock off the Republican Hispanic senator who is portrayed as a white man — Sen. Ted Cruz. O’Rourke is said to hold a lead over Cruz among Hispanics and Latinos, but not one of much significance to decisively put him over the top on election day.
A political pollster and researcher at the University of Texas in Austin named Joshua Blank reported that even though he hadn’t seen much defection from Democrats among Hispanics and Latinos because of Trump and his immigration policies, there was about a solid third who already supported Republicans and were more likely to turnout to vote than the others.
Furthermore, the Senate race in Arizona is a cause for concern as the Democrat candidate, Krysten Sinema, is actually losing among Latino voters to her most likely Republican challenger, Rep. Martha McSally, though that could certainly change between now and November.
Adding greatly to the sense of alarm on the left was a recent poll from NBC and the Wall Street Journal that placed Trump’s approval rating among Hispanic and Latino voters at 39 percent, well above the 28 percent he earned in the 2016 election, though other polls show his support among those voters as being closer to the 2016 level.
In the end, it will most likely come down to the economy, and Amandi noted, “These are people who are not necessarily paying attention to every inning of political baseball. They are working. They are maybe getting a little bit more money.”
Add in the fact that Hispanics and Latinos are traditionally more aligned with Republican positions on being pro-family, pro-business, anti-crime and gangs and imbued with an entrepreneurial spirit, and it is a wonder how Democrats have managed to maintain a solid grip on those voters for so long. But it looks like Trump may have broken that grip, and the floodgates of desperation for Democrats are beginning to open wide.
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