Latino registered voters prefer President Barack Obama over Republican challenger Mitt Romney by 69% to 21% and express growing satisfaction with the direction of the nation and the state of their personal finances, according to a new nationwide survey of 1,765 Latinos by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center. Latino registered voters are somewhat less certain than non-Hispanics that they will vote in this election, however.
Obama’s current lead over Romney among Hispanics has barely budged throughout the 2012 campaign and is larger than in the 2008 election, when he received 67% of the Hispanic vote to 31% for Republican John McCain. Since then, the Latino electorate has grown in size and importance. Today, 23.7 million Hispanics are eligible to vote, an increase of more than 4 million since 2008. Hispanics now account for a record 11.0% of the nation’s eligible electorate, up from 9.5% in 2008.
The new survey also finds a sharp rise in the past year in the share of Latinos who identify the Democratic Party as the one that has more concern for Latinos. Some 61% say this now, up from 45% in 2011. Just 10% say this about the Republican Party, down from 12% in 2011.
With the turnout rate of eligible Latino voters historically lagging that of other groups, the new survey finds that 77% of Latino registered voters say they are «absolutely certain» they will vote this year. By comparison, 89% of all registered voters say the same in a separatePewResearchCentersurvey of the general public taken at the same time. Likewise, 61% of Latino registered voters say they have thought «quite a lot» about the upcoming presidential election, compared with 70% of registered voters in the general public.
At the same time, however, fully two-thirds (67%) of Latino adults say they believe the Latino vote will have a «major impact» on determining who wins this year’s election.