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Latino voters played key role in California races, other national contests, survey finds

Advocacy groups are touting results from a pre-election survey that showed Latino influence in deciding elections in eight states, including California.

Latino voters overwhelmingly supported California’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown and U.S. Senate incumbent Barbara Boxer over their respective Republican rivals Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina, according to polls conducted by Latino Decisions and sponsored by the National Council of La Raza, Service Employees International Union and America’s Voice.

The Democratic candidates each drew support from 86% of the Latino voters polled, according to the survey. Jerry Brown won the election with nearly 54% of the overall vote, while Boxer won reelection with 52%.

“The first critical takeaway I would offer is that the GOP wave stops in California,” said Gary Segura, a senior researcher with Latino Decisions and professor at Stanford University. “There was virtually no evidence of the GOP wave in the state with the largest Latino population.”

The poll reached 3,200 “extremely likely” voters in phone interviews between Oct. 28 and Nov. 1, with a reported a margin of error of plus or minus 4.2% for state data and 1.7% for national data.

On a national level, Segura pointed to the Latino vote as the likely saving grace for the Democrats’ Senate majority and particularly for  Majority Leader Harry Reid in Nevada. According to the poll, Latinos supported Reid by an overwhelming margin -- 90% favored the Democratic compared with 8% for Republican Sharron Angle.

Advocates said Angle’s anti-illegal immigrant rhetoric and Reid’s decision to bring up the DREAM Act -- which would offer a path to citizenship for certain young people who were brought to the United States illegally as minors -- for a Senate vote in September brought Latino voters to the polls.

“That combination helped to motivate Latino voters in a way that saved Harry Reid’s race,” said Frank Sharry, executive director of America’s Voice.

On the other hand, a number of Republican Latino candidates won their races, including Senate candidate Marco Rubio in Florida, House candidates Jaime Herrera in Washington and Bill Flores in Texas, and gubernatorial candidate Susana Martinez in New Mexico. Gloria Montaño Greene, director of the Washington, D.C., office of the National Assn. of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Education Fund, said the fact that Latino voters or candidates aided both parties is not a contradiction.

“I think both sides are evidence of the overall influence of the Latino vote,” she said.

In the poll, Latino voters cited jobs, the economy and immigration as the top issues that drew them to the polls in 2010. Californian Latinos were more approving of the Obama administration’s handling of immigration, with 54% of California respondents saying they approved, compared with 49% nationwide.

--Abby Sewell

Comments () | Archives (50)

Great...welcome to the brave new world illegal immigration has brought....

vote for your race.

the dems will lead the reconquista.

Although I am not a Latino. I do not know why these GOP hardliners about immigration thinks that they will win without the support of the Latino votes.

Are we supposed to believe that a poll conducted by an organization called "Latino Decisions" sponsored by a group whose Spanish name translates into English as "The Race" would produce anything other than results indicating the overwhelming influence and near unanimity of the Latino vote?

Puh-lease. Of course the Latino vote was "influential," especially in California, and to the liberal democratic party. May I say one word "HANDOUTS!!!" Give me a fricken break people.

So, what was the percentage of Latino votes in regards to total voters? Throwing out numbers doesn't mean anything if you don't have the full scope. 85% of 2% of the votes wouldn't matter at all. Keep pushing the agenda though guys. It's serving the newspaper industry well.

funny there is no mention what percentage of the total votes were latino. sure, of the latino people voting 90% of them voted democratic but how much influence were they on the overall election?

Let's see Jerry Brown and his green economy, Barbara Boxer is so pro environmental, and Prop. 23 failed. hey Latino's you just voted yourselves right out of jobs! Nice job!

@AJ - Potentially because they don't need it. Here is a link that shows a potential breakdown of the Hispanic vote.


When you represent about 6% of the voter turnout, quite frankly, you don't matter in the scheme of things. Pandering to get 1-2% of votes while potentially turning over a larger percentage of your base is exactly why you DON'T do it. It's strategic suicide that Republicans just can't seem to grasp.

NO one is believing this survey. Please its so bias. Look what the main media is reporting.
"""Latinos Help Score Some Wins for GOP
Voters in the Southwest put a dent in the widely held notion that Latinos overwhelmingly favor the Democratic Party, helping to score big wins for several Hispanic Republicans and some unexpected losses for Hispanic Democrats.

Hispanics are backing the wrong party! But continue to do that and we'll see if you in 2012. I would like to think that there are legal Hispanic voters who want more than the Dems have given.
Illegals! Go home! We all know many of you vote for the dems and with a majority in both houses what did they give you. Lies! and more Lies!

If you were an immigrant and had waves of illegal immigrant family members coming to join you here in Calif, of course you would vote for Brown and Boxer. Free social services and entitlements. I would. They would be foolish to vote for Meg and Carla, as they may have to work for these benefits. Good campaign strategy on the part of B and B.

For us hard working taxpayers here in Ca, were screwed..

For all the negative coments about latinos.
Let me say something.
This is what is called democracy. People practice their right to vote regarless of your of the color of your skin, race, gender, religion.
America is a country a coutry of immigrants.

Right On Richard Long.....you are finally CATCHING ON!

The invasion is coming to fruition. If the Latino vote was as influential as is declared, how many vote for PEOPLE and not for parties? Not many. It's clear that Latinos will vote as others tell them to vote, and have no idea about the real issues at stake. Does California really want lockstep voters? I guess so. Brown and Boxer were bought and paid for by Unions, and so were their elections. Daily life in California just got much, much worse.

the issue is not "Latino" or "Hispanic" the issue is illegal Mexican immigration. Mexican is not a race it's a nationality and the issue is about the United States' sovereignty. If they're here illegally then deport them, all of them. If an employer has hired illegal immigrants, Mexican or otherwise, then fine that employer heavily. It is an invasion that needs to be stopped at the border. Build the fence, man it and keep the Mexicans from crossing over illegally. Mexican-American citizens need to step up and back deportations and building the fence along our entire southern border. Farmers and ranchers should only hire legal immigrants I'm fed up with paying for their "cheap" labor with food stamps, free medical care, incarceration, social security number theft etc. Everyone else has to immigrate legally so why don't the Mexicans have too?

for all the negative coments about Latinos.
people just practice the right to vote regarless of the color of their skin, race, gender, and religion.
This country was founded by immigrants.
Please stop using other people in order to make a point, in this economical donwturn there are a lot of people to blame.

I'm sorry I'm late, is this where the xenophobic, racist rants are submitted? Seriously guys, you sound like idiots. I guess if the Latino vote would have gone the other way, then "they" would be finally learning. But since it didn't go your way, "they" just want hand outs and what is it?...oh that's right, they are all illegal so it doesn't matter. Listen to that, KFI is on the air, better hurry up and get your talking points!
Isn't the internet great? You get to hear what idiots really think.


Good night, my liberals.
Sleep well, sleep tight.
Goodnight, sweet liberals, goodnight.
I wish I may, and I wish I might,
Give all liberals sweet dreams tonight.

We know you did the best you could.
You governed just as liberals should,
Used wacky plans no one else ever would.
Well, goodnight, my liberals, goodnight.

You've beautiful music.
Your jokes are cool.
Your acting's to die for.
In the arts, you rule.
In politics, you stumble and drool.
Oh goodnight, sweet liberals, goodnight.

Every time one of you hateful, mean-spirited trolls posts some unfounded accusations against all Latinos (that we like hand-outs, that we are all illegal), you inspire another non-political (possibly conservative) Latino citizen to go out and vote against everything that you stand for. So, for their sake, I encourage you to keep posting your hate. Keep at it. I hate to read it but the results (as Harry Reid can attest) could not be sweeter!!!! I'm not being sarcastic. I mean it. Keep doing whatever it is that you are doing because it worked on me, ... not the way you intended, I think, but it sure did work.

The Latinos who won GOP seats are conservative and do not get a majority of the overall Latino vote which is predominantly Democratic to date.

It goes all the way back tot he Civil Rights movement. That movement not only cemented the Black vote for Democrats, but the Latino vote as well.

In California, you had Jerry Brown marching with Cesar Chavez during his first term as Governor for farm worker rights. Where were the Republicans then?

In California, you had the Republican Pete Wilson supporting proposition 187. What happened? A huge number of LEGAL RESIDENTS BECAME CITIZENS and voted the Republicans out of office. They've been relegated to a minority party ever since.

So who's to blame for Latinos supporting Democrats? Republicans keep on marginalizing people of color and every turn and shooting themselves in the foot. The only have themselves to blame.

Latinos are not stupid. They are not going where they are not welcomed.

Give me a break ....

Latinos, approves of the way Obama is handing immigration because they want to go before anyone else. These people think Obama, is going to bypass immigration laws for them, and we will let him do it. It is Big Business, and the Feds that want them.

Latinos give themselves too much credit. They hilariously took credit for Obama's win in 2008 as well, when in fact it was white moderates who swung the election for Obama.

Obama in 2008 and Brown and Boxer this year all would have won no matter what Latinos decided to do. Only nine percent of Latinos are registered to vote, and only 40 percent of them voted yesterday.

@Steve Rodriguez

Prop. 23 passed, 61 percent to 39 percent.

We will gve you welfare. What? You want to work your own farms in Central Valley? No. No. You will get welfare, work in public office for us and abandon this notion of self support. Besides you are killing the smelt watering your farms. Fish are a little higher on our food chain than you. And please lose the catholicism. We don't tolerate that in the Democratic party except the few months before elections when we pretend we are religious. After that it is all our war on religion.

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