With the 2022 midterms approaching, Democrats have been wondering how to appeal to a key demographic in elections-- Latino voters. A new report from Pew Research Center might have the answers.
Data from the study shows that the most pressing issues among Latino voters are education and the economy. Latino Republicans are more concerned with crime and immigration, whereas Latino Democrats worry about gun control and healthcare.
According to the report, 60 percent of Latino voters support the Democratic party, as opposed to 34 percent in favor of the Republican party. However, only 53 percent actively intended to vote for Democratic candidates in the upcoming 2022 midterms.
Despite the majority of Latino voters identifying as Christian, abortion jumped in importance to this past year, particularly among Democrats. Data from all registered voters shows national support for abortion at around 62 percent, whereas 57 percent of Latino voters support access to the procedure.
“A clear majority of Hispanic Democrats say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, but their support for abortion is somewhat more lukewarm than among Democrats overall,” Jens Manuel Krogstad, one author of the Pew report told Vox.
While 84 percent of registered Democrats agree abortion should be accessible, only 69 percent of Latino Democrats are in favor. An equal amount of Republican voters support abortion restrictions across demographics, with 60 percent opposing the procedure, Latino or otherwise.
While both Democrats and Republicans in the demographic agree with stronger gun control efforts to a degree larger than average voter, less than half of Latino voters agree that LGBTQ rights are "good for society." It seems that among the demographic, Democratic candidates are losing ground on many key cultural issues, as Republican candidates can often use "unfamiliarity with LGBTQ identity" and "frustrations with border policies" to win over voters.
Despite support for some progressive positions, pushing others may dissuade Latino voters from backing Democratic candidates, or even leave avenues for Republicans to gain prevalence. The Pew report also found that Republican Latinos are "more motivated to vote" than their counterparts, leaving uncertain support for the Democratic party.
With several culture war issues looming over the 2022 midterms, Latino voters have made their priorities known. While less than half believe there is a significant difference between the Democrat and Republican parties, Krogstad believes this is a positive demographic trait. Despite increasing polarization, Latino voters remain open to other parties, therefore other viewpoints.
Krogstad says: “This survey shows that when it comes to Latinos in politics, it’s not always black and white. Latinos don’t always neatly fit into a nation’s two-party system.”