2014 Archives

Latino voters turning their backs on President Obama over lack of action on immigration


The following is from Fox News Latino for Oct. 6, 2014. SMU Political Science Professor Cal Jillson provided expertise for this story.

October 10, 2014

By Mike Emanuel
Fox News Latino

At the time of his November 2012 re-election, President Barack Obama had rock star approval ratings with Latino voters, but those numbers have dropped significantly as a key constituency experiences some frustration with his delay in taking unilateral action on immigration.

Gallup Poll figures from December 2012 showed that Obama's approval rating with Hispanics was 22 percentage points above the national average, 75 percent compared to 53 percent.

Now that the president has delayed taking executive action on immigration until after the midterm election on Nov. 4, his approval rating among Hispanic voters has dropped to just 10 points above the national average of 42 percent. . . 

The president is now promising executive action between election day and the end of the year.

Southern Methodist University Professor Cal Jillson says Democrats are betting that Latino voters won’t stray too far. "The White House and Democrats in general feel that they can get that Hispanic vote back in a higher turnout 2016 presidential election,” Jillson told Fox News. “So what they're trying to do now is they're willing to disappoint some Hispanics if that results in holding the Senate." 

Many Democratic politicians feared that if Obama had acted on immigration before the midterm election, it would have angered voters, possibly causing Democrats to lose some hotly contested Senate races in states like Alaska, Arkansas, and Louisiana. Republicans need a net gain of six seats to win back the majority in the Senate. 

“The White House was assuming that because those are red states, if you did a big immigration move ahead of the election, you might endanger those incumbents, lose control of the Senate and that would be worse than having a little bit of fall off in the Hispanic vote in 2014,” Jillson said.

Read the full story.