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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Latinos key to Obama re-election

All the hype about the importance of the Latino vote came to fruition last night as Barack Obama was re-elected to a second term. Details are now starting to emerge.

According to the Pew Hispanic Center, Latinos made up 10% of the electorate, as indicated by the national exit poll, up from 9% in 2008 and 8% in 2004. The Center's exit poll analysis also shows that as a group, non-white voters made up 28% of the nation's electorate, up from 26% in 2008.

Latinos voted for President Obama over Republican Mitt Romney 71% to 27%, and Obama's national vote share among Hispanic voters is the highest seen by a Democratic candidate since 1996, when President Bill Clinton won 72% of the Hispanic vote.

Moreover, Latinos were critical in key battleground states like Florida, Colorado and Nevada.
  • They were 17% of the electorate in Florida, up from 14% in 2008. Obama carried Florida's Hispanic vote 60% to 39%.
  • In Colorado, Latinos made up 14% of voters, up from 13% in 2008. Obama carried the Hispanic vote there 75% to 23%.
  • In Nevada, the Hispanic share was 18%, up from 15% in 2008. Obama won Nevada's Hispanic vote 70% to 25%. Obama's Hispanic vote was up from 2008 in Florida and Colorado, but down in Nevada.
Among Latino voters, support for Obama was strong among all major demographic sub-groups. However, there was a gender gap among Hispanics as there was among the electorate as a whole. Obama carried Hispanic women with 76% of the vote and Hispanic males with 65%.

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