Texas Hispanics Will Continue to be in Play, as Republican's 2020 Gains are Targeted by Democrats

Younger Latinos eclipsing their parents & older generations could be key

AUSTIN, Texas (Texas Insider Report) — Flashback: Nearly half of Latino Voters in Florida cast a ballot for President Donald Trump in November of 2020, and the Democrat Party was roundly criticized for once again failing to build an outreach effort sufficient enough – let alone the much-heralded election winning GOVT (Get Out the Vote) operation – to beat even Donald Trump in the Sunshine State. Perhaps of even bigger concern to Democrats, was Donald Trump's remarkable gains among Hispanic Voters in far South Texas' Rio Grande Valley.

One of them was to be able to cast her vote for Trump.
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“We live on the border, and we're big on law enforcement here. They need our help,” said Mayra Gutierrez, who moved to the United States from Mexico in the 1980s and became a U.S. Citizen in January 2020.

She's a volunteer for a local Latinos Republican groups, and voted for President Trump.
 
Despite the frequently-claimed, and supposedly massive Latino voter targeting and outreach efforts by State Democrat Parties in battleground states across the nation, Voto Latino's co-founding President & CEO, María Teresa Kumar and other Democrat operatives have long advocated for more year round voter registration programs to keep up with the GOP's efforts on the ground. 
 
“To their credit, Democrats turned around the engagement (in Florida)... But, they were trying to do in six weeks what the Republicans had been doing for five years,” said Fernand Amandi, a Florida Democrat pollster and strategist of the party's operation in Florida last year.

Yet judging from Trump's performance in Florida, Texas and other Hispanic-heavy states, Democrat's national party leadership efforts have failed in their outreach and organizing efforts when compared to then-President Trump's efforts in the 2020 Election.
 
“Florida, where the Latino vote share is older, is going to be harder to flip,” said Voto Latino's María Teresa Kumar recently, adding, there's “not enough young people to surpass older Latinx generations.”
 
For all of the criticism Democrats and the Biden Campaign received about their lackluster outreach to Latino voters, the progressive Voto Latino organization exceeded their voter registration goals in the 2020 election cycle. An analysis done by Voto Latino in partnership with Clarity Campaign Labs and Catalist, and provided to the Washington Post, showed that during the 2020 Election:
 
  • The group collected 617,714 complete Voter Registration Applications — a 123% increase over their projected goal for the cycle.
  • 78% of all applications successfully made it onto the state's voter file in time for the November 2020 general election.
    • 77% of which voted in the November General Election; and
    • 55% of which were first time voters.
  • 83% of the total voters Voto Latino registered voted early — a promising sign for the group signaling major behavioral changes for a community that “believes in mañana,” 
Further, 70% of all people Voto Latino registered were under the age of 39:
 
“Where the younger Latinx was a larger share of the overall Latino electorate, the state swung for Biden: Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, and Pennsylvania,” said Voto Latino's co-founding President & CEO, María Teresa Kumar recently, telling the Washingon Post recently,
 
“If this trend holds true: Texas & North Carolina will be next in play as younger Latinos eclipse older generations.”
 
Earlier this month in Arizona, “GOP Gov. Doug Ducey on Tuesday quickly signed a bill into law that could remove tens of thousands of voters from the state's early ballot mailing list,” NPR's Ben Giles recently reported.

Identification is now required to cast a mailed ballot in Florida and Georgia, the Associated Press's Christina Cassidy reports:
 
“Legislation to require identification for mail voting was introduced in Arizona, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas, according to information compiled by the Voting Rights Lab, which advocates for expanded voter access.”

Republicans have launched campaigns to become their states’ top election officials next year, alarming Democrats.

Candidates included in that group are:
  They are all now running for Secretary of State in some of the key battleground states that could decide control the of Congress in 2022 — as well as, many Democrats fear, who wins the White House in 2024.

There's always been, Texas locals say, a significant conservative presence among Latinos in Texas' Rio Grande Valley – where Mexican American families are closely tied to the Federal & Local Law Enforcement Community. Many of those voters are also deeply influenced by their religious beliefs when it comes to issues such as abortion.

In the run-up to the 2020 Presidential Election, Trump supporters gathered for caravans every weekend of the past two months to parade through the streets of McAllen, Tex., waving flags and signs, honking their horns and celebrating their support.

And still to this day, many Democrat strategists are reckoning with how the Biden campaign fell short on courting Latino voters.
 
“Coming out of the election, there's one interpretation: Biden came around too late, and didn’t invest the money,” said Geraldo Cadava, author of “The Hispanic Republican” and a professor at Northwestern University.

"That’s part of the story, but its still doesn’t take seriously the agency or the political agency of Latino Republicans.

“What we missed was the kind of under-the-radar plotting and relentless pursuit of Latinos,” Cadava said.

In the past, there has been an instinct to blame Latinos and accuse them of not caring enough to vote, said Eric Rodriguez, senior vice president of policy and advocacy for UnidosUS.

This year, Latino voters broke records, increasing turnout by 15 to 20 percent, but increased Hispanic participation will no longer favor just one party.

“It isn’t the voters’ fault. It was the (Biden) campaign’s,” Rodriguez said.
 
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