Phoenix- Latino voters in the United States have been decisive in several key states in this year’s elections, but in the opposite way: the outgoing president, Donald Trump, managed to win in Florida thanks to the support of Cubans, while the president-elect , Joe Biden, triumphed in Arizona and was about to surprise in Texas with the support of Hispanics, less in the border areas.
This occurs because the political leanings of Hispanics in the country vary according to gender, generation, country of origin -from Chile to Mexico, passing through Nicaragua-, religion and how long they have been in the United States, according to various demographic studies.
What is common in this very heterogeneous group is that it is the youngest ethnic group in the country and, according to the first analyzes, there was a particularly strong participation among Latinos under 30 years of age.RELATED
The trend of the Latino suffrage as a whole returned to being Democratic, since Trump did not win the majority of this vote in any state, although he was close to doing so in Florida, where there was a technical tie between both candidates thanks to the impulse of the Cubans, according to to a study by the America’s Society Council of America.
Florida Cubans, with Trump
In fact, Trump received the support of 56% of Cuban-Americans, a group with a lot of weight in Miami-Dade County, which ended up deciding the balance of 29 electoral votes for the Republican.
The fear of a supposed “communism” by Biden, an idea promoted and enhanced by the conservative politician’s campaign, and Trump’s strong hand towards the island caused the vast majority of that electoral group to elect the outgoing president at the polls.
After learning the results, some 200 Cubans took to the streets of Miami this Saturday to protest an alleged elec toral “fraud” and assured that Biden will have to face a legal battle over the elections, a strategy proposed by Trump himself.
Arizona’s youth vote is Democrat
Arizona, a very conservative state in which only two Democratic presidential candidates had won in the last 70 years, changed its sign and gave victory to Biden, in the absence of the count of less than 100,000 votes.
And a good part of the responsibility for this result lies in the high participation of young Hispanics who used their vote as a rejection of Trump’s immigration policies.
According to preliminary data from the Latino Decisions firm, close to 70% of the Hispanic population supported the liberal candidate, especially because of the mobilization of Latino organizations such as Mi Gente and ¡Aqui se Vota !.
In addition to the vote against Trump, several analysts have pointed out the importance in Arizona of the rejection of Latinos against former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, for enacting one of the most anti-immigrant laws in the country and to whom the president granted him a presidential pardon.
Another factor, according to experts consulted by Efe, has been the impact that Trump’s insults had on the late Senator John McCain, a highly respected figure in that state and in the United States.
So says Ray Ibarra Maldonado, a Phoenix-based attorney and immigration expert who worked closely with the senator’s office on “many” of his cases.
“There are many independent voters and Latino Republicans who loved John McCain very much. Trump’s rifirrafe has taken a toll on him, not only here, but also throughout the country, “reflected the lawyer in statements to Efe.
Texas, an “almost but no”
The other state in which Hispanics had a significant weight, not forgetting Nevada, was Texas. Biden was the closest Democratic contender to beating there in decades.
In large cities, such as Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, and Austin, the Latino voter tended to vote for the president-elect. One of the groups that worked for it was Jolt Texas. According to its president, Antonio Arellano, the organization encouraged half a million Latinos to vote for the first time and helped young Hispanic participation to grow by 600%.
However, Trump prevailed among Latinos living in several counties bordering Mexico, a surprise to the Democratic Party, which took that support for granted and made no effort to campaign there.