HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » The Democrats' Hispanic P...

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 09:27 AM

The Democrats' Hispanic Problem

Politico:

Rick Scott has spent years courting Hispanics as if his political career depended on it. He took Spanish lessons while serving as Florida’s Republican governor, and reached out to Democratic-leaning Puerto Ricans by visiting their island after Hurricane Maria—not once, but eight times. He chose a Cuban-American lieutenant governor, and showed up in Cuban strongholds like Hialeah so often that locals joked that el gobernador must be one of them. He displayed his solidarity with Venezuelan exiles at El Arepazo restaurant in Doral—not once, but at six separate events. “The first time we went to El Arepazo, I had never met the owner,” says Scott’s Hispanic communications director, Jaime Florez. “We went back so many times, I swear to God, he’s now one of my best friends.”

It turned out that Scott’s political career did depend on his diligent courtship of Latino voters, because on Election Day, they extended it. Despite the national Democratic wave, Scott unseated U.S. Senator Bill Nelson by 10,033 votes, and a key factor was Scott’s energetic pursuit of Hispanic voters neglected by his Democratic opponent. The Hispanic vote was also critical for Scott’s Republican successor as governor, Ron DeSantis, who also chose a Cuban-American running mate, Jeanette Nuñez, and also squeaked out a narrow victory, in his case over Democrat Andrew Gillum. Democrats clearly have a Hispanic problem in America’s largest swing state, a problem that could help President Donald Trump win a second term in 2020.

Nationally, overwhelming margins among Latino voters helped drive Democratic victories in states like California, Nevada and Arizona. But in Florida, older Cuban-Americans who mostly support Republicans voted in droves, while turnout for younger Cubans, Puerto Ricans, and other non-Cuban Hispanics who skew Democratic lagged—and did not skew as Democratic as expected. Exit polls found Democrats won only 54 percent of the Hispanic vote, down from 62 percent in 2016 and 58 percent in 2014. Florida Democrats did replace two Cuban-American Republicans in majority-Hispanic congressional districts, while electing several new Latino state legislators and local officials. But the top-of-the-ticket losses were brutal wake-up calls for Democrats who hope to flip Florida in 2020, and are counting on the state’s fastest-growing demographic to help them flip it.

Before the midterms, the spin from Democrats was that Trump was their best Hispanic organizer. He was supposedly mobilizing opposition to Republican allies like Scott and DeSantis by demonizing immigrants, bungling the response to Hurricane Maria, and tailoring his message exclusively to his right-wing base. But while Trump fired up Hispanics in the Southwest, especially Mexican-Americans who objected to his push for a border wall, Florida Hispanics represent a much broader cross section of Latin America. A majority of them do object to Trump, but marginally improved turnout by non-Cuban Hispanics was overshadowed by much higher turnout from Trump’s base of older Cuban exiles as well as whites, while the blue wave of Puerto Rican hurricane evacuees that some Democrats thought could change the politics of Florida forever never materialized.

13 replies, 666 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread

Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 09:32 AM

1. Actually it almost did materialize, same in Texas. It was an extremely close election in a purple

and red state respectively

An African American almost became Governor in a state with a history of racism

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 09:33 AM

2. The Republicans' Ex-Con problem

Florida just added 1.5 million potential voters who trend Democrat.

1.5 million > 10000, correct?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PubliusEnigma (Reply #2)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 09:34 AM

3. Step 1: Get them registered Step 2: get them to show up to vote

Report back afterwards

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PubliusEnigma (Reply #2)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:12 PM

7. Don't be a Happy Adjuster and depend on that ex-felon vote

I can't believe how many people have misinterpreted that variable. As I posted here a month ago, anyone who thinks the odds shift on Florida based on the ex-felon vote has no clue regarding political math.

Here is a new related article with some sobering numbers and conclusion:

https://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/political-pulse/os-ne-felon-voting-rights-future-20181129-story.html

"Paulson estimated that about 700,000 people, or about half of the estimated 1.4 million former felons in Florida, will register to vote – and of those, only about a third, or 230,000, will actually cast a regular ballot.

<snip>

"DeFoor said studies have shown that former felons who have been granted clemency in the past were statistically more likely to register as independents. The requirement in the amendment to pay back all fines and restitutions also has an effect, he said.

“The historical evidence suggests – there’s not a lot of evidence, but it’s all we’ve got – that it slightly favors Republicans among people who’ve fit this model in the past in Florida,” DeFoor said. “Both parties have a real opportunity here. It’s kind of like a swearing-in [of new citizens] at a courthouse.”

***

Here is another section of the same article. It describes what I have long reported, that we are being consistently outworked in Florida, with the registration advantage steadily plummeting as a result.

"But Democratic strategist Steve Schale said it’s unlikely the new voters will automatically start to swing elections in the Democrats’ favor.

“People who live in Florida – just as we saw after [Hurricane] Maria – think, ‘This one big thing is going to dramatically reshape the state,’” Schale said. “I don’t believe that.”

Schale said the Democrats’ registration margin over Republicans in Florida has dipped from about 670,000 in 2008 to 260,000 in 2018.

“My party has to show up and register voters,” Schale said. “Could that potential pool of a million and a half people have an impact on politics? Absolutely. But none of this matters if parties can’t reach out.”

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Awsi Dooger (Reply #7)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:25 PM

8. Thanks for those estimates.

I estimate there has never been a situation where 1.4 million potential voters suddenly appeared out of thin air.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 10:00 AM

4. Wow, seems like every other day the Democratic party

Has a Hispanic problem a African American problem a old white guy or gal problem a milenium problem a educated baby boomer problem a non-educated gay man a fill in the next one problem. Find who you like and vote or better yet find who will cause the most damage to you and your country and vote against. A political party can't be everything to everyone . Just not possible.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 10:06 AM

5. No, Hispanics voting for Retrumplicans is a "Hispanic problem", NOT a Democratic Party problem

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 10:28 AM

6. there is no problem with hispanics and democrats, the problem is with hispanics who vote

against their own self-interest, just like with any demographic

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:35 PM

9. Democrats should have an Hispanic on the ticket in 2020

for President or Vice President. When Obama ran in 2008, African American turnout surged past white turnout for the first time. Maybe that would happen if we have an Hispanic candidate on the ticket in 2020?

Eric Garcetti
Xavier Becerra
Julian or Joaquin Castro

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:37 PM

10. If Donald Trump is re-elected it will probably be due to Hispanic voters

Hispanics have a long history of benefit of a doubt toward incumbents. I noted that when I started following political math in 1992. The details of each race and the two candidates don't seem to matter. Hispanics, unlike any other major voting block, shift toward the incumbent in strange and often inexplicable dependability. It attaches to presidential races and also lesser races.

If Democratic strategists take the Hispanic vote for granted and merely assign a comfortable percentage to our nominee based on 2016 (66%) or 2018 (69%), they are utter fools and making the same type of blunder that Hillary made in 2016 regarding Michigan and Wisconsin and the white working class vote in general.

Frankly, those strategists should be replaced right now and replaced by ones who know what they are doing. We can't be stupid enough to treat an election versus an incumbent the same as an open race or an incumbent of our own. The 2020 cycle sets up worse than anything we have faced since 2004 from a situational perspective, and situation is everything.

Bill Clinton got 61% of the Hispanic vote in 1992 then 73% as incumbent in 1996. Bush 43 received 35% of Hispanic support in 2000 then 44% while incumbent in 2004. Obama had 67% among the Hispanic block in 2008 then 71% in 2012.

Hillary got 66% of Hispanics in 2016 to Trump's 28%. And that 28% is the ominous number toward 2020. It is so low that Trump basically doesn't have to do anything to surpass it comfortably in 2020. Obama already had 67% in 2008 so logically he didn't have as much upside with the group as other incumbents.

But Donald Trump at 28% can pick off 5-10% extra without changing anything at all. If Democrats don't grasp that, then we are setting ourselves up to be shocked in late 2020 when polls indicate higher than projected Hispanic support for Trump.

Day to day details mean nothing. As always, that is the danger. That is the density of the nightly talk shows, the ones that obsess on what was said and done today while totally clueless regarding the wide scope. You can't look at Trump's themes toward Hispanics like the wall and all the divisive comments and conclude that he won't even reach 28% in 2020.

I would assign 61%-35% right now and then figure out how we win from there.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:46 PM

11. Scott knew his electorate and played the long game and it worked.

It's too bad that there are Hispanics who will vote for Republican candidates when they are exactly the kind who would have people stopped and judged if they 'look' Hispanic, make them show their papers, prove they can speak English.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 01:59 PM

12. Bill Nelson basically gave away the senate seat

He ran a terrible race and he couldn't afford to do that, given the opponent and in a midterm cycle. It was essentially incumbent versus incumbent and governors are more visible than senators in Florida, with all the hurricanes, etc.

Here is another segment from the link within the OP. I read this article earlier today and was not surprised. Harry Reid in Nevada was well ahead of the game, especially in regard to midterm realities, as I witnessed while living in Las Vegas from 1984 to 2008 and have detailed here many times.

Reid tried to warn Nelson about complacency with Hispanic voters. Nelson's quotes are incredible. He got away with the ignorance in 2012 only because it was a presidential cycle, and he had a lesser opponent. But in 2018 he took too much for granted and still didn't understand how to communicate with Hispanic voters or differentiate between one Hispanic block and another:

(BTW, I realize I am linking many sections of the article. I apologize if it is too much. But from experience posters are more likely to read from the thread as opposed to clicking the link. These segments are important to understand what unfolded in Florida, instead of merely whining about stolen elections)

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/12/04/democrats-hispanic-voters-2020-222751

"In late 2011, as Nelson was preparing for his previous Senate reelection campaign, then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned him to pay more attention to Hispanics back home. A top Reid aide from Miami, Jose Parra, recalls telling Nelson about a slew of Hispanic journalists in Florida who had complained they were being ignored. “Look, I’ve got a lot of media markets to deal with,” Nelson told Parra. “And frankly, I don’t think I’m going to get the Cuban vote.”

Parra was stunned. Florida is the ultimate 50-50 swing state, and he assumed any seasoned politician would know the key to winning here is managing margins. Yes, Parra told Nelson, most Cubans are Republicans, but if you work hard you might get 40 percent of them, like Bill Clinton did, and that could be the difference between winning and losing. What was even more surprising was Nelson’s apparent belief that “Hispanics” meant “Cubans,” when only about a third of the state’s Hispanics are of Cuban origin. “You’ve also got Puerto Ricans, Ecuadorans, Colombians—those votes add up!” Parra says."

<snip>

"In 2012, Nelson also benefited from the work done to mobilize Hispanics by President Barack Obama, whose successful reelection campaign in Florida is considered a model for how Democrats can maximize their Hispanic vote.

“We cracked the code. And we figured, obviously, Democrats will keep following this playbook, right?” says Miami pollster Fernand Amandi, who helped Obama target the Hispanic vote in 2012. “Wrong. They abandoned it.”

The first element of the playbook was to start early. A year before the election, Obama’s internal polls had him tied with potential Republican opponents among Florida Hispanics, who repeatedly told Amandi’s focus groups they didn’t think Obama had accomplished anything. So the Obama campaign began airing a series of ads on Spanish-language television featuring the Cuban talk show host Cristina Saralegui, a kind of Hispanic Oprah Winfrey, explaining Obama’s work on issues like the economy, education, foreign policy and, especially, health care, an issue on which Hispanics tend to lean progressive. The campaign specifically targeted Puerto Ricans in the central Florida area with reminders that Obama had appointed the first Puerto Rican to the Supreme Court, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, while playing defense with Cubans in South Florida through an ad featuring former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz vouching for Obama’s distaste for the Castro government."

<snip>

“Both of the Democratic nominees sucked in terms of campaigning and communicating with Hispanics,” says David Custin, a Miami-based Republican operative who is the top consultant to Florida’s new House speaker, Jose Oliva. “Compare that to what Obama did. He put in the time and the money.”

Gillum’s most glaring problem with Hispanic outreach was his late start. His underfunded campaign in the late-summer Democratic primary focused mainly on white liberals and African-Americans, and his upset victory left him virtually no time to hire staff to launch a Hispanic strategy for the fall. Christian Ulvert, his director for Spanish-language media, joined the campaign just two weeks before absentee ballots were mailed out. “We had no infrastructure,” Ulvert says. “And honestly, Democrats have been playing catch-up on Hispanic outreach for two decades, because Republicans have invested in it. You can’t close that gap overnight.”



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Tue Dec 4, 2018, 02:14 PM

13. All the expatriate Cubans will be dead in a couple of years, just as the boomers will be

Many of their children will take after them politically, but that voting bloc is on it's way to extinction. Dems need to redouble efforts in these areas.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread