Florida Atlantic University Poll Finds Democrats Keep Edge with Hispanic Voters Despite Split on U.S. President Obama
BOCA RATON, Fla., Oct. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire- HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — A new national poll by the Florida Atlantic University Business and Economic Polling Initiative (FAU BEPI) finds 50 percent of Hispanics said they will vote for a Democratic candidate in the midterms compared to 28 percent who said they would vote Republican. However, Hispanics are split at 40 percent in their approval/disapproval of U.S. President Barack Obama, according to the survey.
“The data suggests that despite their disappointment with President Obama, Hispanic voters are not ready to abandon the Democratic Party,” said Kevin Wagner, associate professor of political science at FAU and a research fellow of the Initiative. “The Hispanic vote could be in play, but the GOP has not made a sufficient effort to attract the voters away from the Democratic Party.”
This is particularly true with Hispanic voters who have a strong group identification. Hispanics who believe that policies affecting their group have an impact on their individual lives are more likely to support Democratic candidates in the mid-term election over Republicans by 20 percent (55 percent to 35 percent). The economy remains the most important issue for Hispanic voters at 38 percent, followed by healthcare at 20 percent, and 16 percent who have selected immigration policy as the key issue. Those who said they plan to vote were more likely to vote Democrat 57 percent to 31 percent for Republican.
As with other groups, Hispanic turnout is helped by contact from the political parties. Hispanic voters who were reached by the parties expressed a greater desire to vote in the midterm election. According to the poll, almost 89 percent of Hispanic respondents who were contacted by one of the parties expressed intent to vote.
“There is an opening for the parties to increase their vote-share by reaching out to Hispanic voters who might not otherwise vote,” said Wagner. “Contact makes a significant impact with Hispanic voters.”
The FAU survey sample included 803 Hispanics across the nation with a margin of error of +/- 3.4 percent. The data was collected between Oct. 1 and Oct. 20, through IVR telephone and online. The full methodology and cross tabs can be found at http://www.business.fau.edu/bepi or by contacting Monica Escaleras at 561-297-1312 or BEPI@fau.edu.