Former President Donald Trump garnered 38% of the Hispanic vote in 2020, a major improvement with this key bloc that some Republicans attribute to the Democratic Party’s embrace of “progressive woke-ism.”
Trump topped his abysmal 2016 performance with Hispanic voters by 10 percentage points, according to a post-election survey from the Pew Research Center. Some of the credit, say Republican operatives who have spent years encouraging Hispanics to support GOP candidates, belongs to the former president’s jobs-focused economic agenda. But the significant Hispanic shift toward Trump might never have happened, they emphasize, absent their perception that Democrats veered sharply left on cultural issues.
Specifically, proposals to defund the police and abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement, plus support for a robust climate agenda that would eliminate the use of fossil fuels, sent Hispanics fleeing into the arms of Trump and the Republicans. That’s the conclusion drawn by Daniel Garza, a GOP operative who works in the trenches trying to boost Hispanic support for Republicans and runs LIBRE Initiative, a conservative group focused on outreach to this critical cohort.
“They are rejecting woke progressivism,” Garza told the Washington Examiner in a telephone interview Tuesday.
Ed Espinoza, a Democratic operative in Texas who focuses on Hispanic turnout, rejects Republican claims that 2020 marked a turning point in the party’s quest to become more competitive with this demographic. Espinoza especially takes issue with the notion that the Democratic Party took a cultural left turn that caused Hispanics to switch allegiances. Indeed, it did not surprise him at all that slightly more than one-third of Hispanics supported Trump over President Joe Biden.
“This is a community that is not a monolith,” Espinoza said. “Latinos are not a base electorate — they are a persuasion and base electorate.” In other words, Espinoza explained, it’s always been a mistake to assume that Hispanics are, as a rule, Democratic base voters and therefore impervious to the right campaign pitch, from the right Republican.
Even Trump, for all of his politically charged immigration rhetoric, was a natural fit with some Hispanics, especially men, outside of the Republican-leaning Cuban American community of South Florida. “It’s not surprising that Trump hit 40% with Latino men,” Espinoza said. “They are more conservative. It has to do with the culture, with guns. It seems like every Latino I know has a Republican brother.”
The Pew Research Center post-election poll was based on interviews with 11,818 voters who participated in its American Trends Panel between Nov. 12–17 of last year, just days after the general election concluded. For comparisons with the results of the two previous elections, Pew also referred to interviews with 10,640 voters conducted on Nov. 7–16 of 2018 and 4,183 voters conducted Nov. 29 to Dec. 12 of 2016.
To verify that the respondents had, in fact, voted, Pew matched names against records from three separate commercially available voter files that contained registration information for the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections and the 2018 midterm elections. If an interviewee’s voting history could not be verified, Pew put him or her in the category of not having voted. Pew’s findings regarding how Hispanics voted have attracted much attention.
The top-line figure showed Biden beating Trump among all Hispanic voters nationally 59% to 38%, versus Hillary Clinton’s 66% to 28% advantage with this group just four years earlier. Trump’s showing with Hispanics in his failed reelection bid was the best the GOP has done with this group since President George W. Bush scored 40% in 2004.
Pew did not have a gender breakdown comparing 2016 and 2020. But Trump’s 40% with Hispanic men last November was 13 points better than Republican candidates did with this same cohort in the 2018 midterm elections. And the former president’s 37% with Hispanic women was 14 points better than Republican candidates did with this demographic two years prior. Trump was at his best, 41%, among Hispanics with some college education or less.
Similar to Trump’s performance with white voters, the more education Hispanic voters had, the less they thought of the 45th president. Per Pew, just 30% of Hispanics with a college education or more supported Trump, with 69% of this group backing Biden.
Author : David M. Drucker
Source : Washington Examiner : Republicans credit ‘woke-ism’ for gains with Hispanics