Turned Out Or Tuned Out

If you want to know why Republicans are so very interested in vote suppression among Latino voters (and minorities in general, but especially Latino voters) at the state level, it’s because of this right here:

Less than six months before November’s presidential election, President Obama enjoys a sizable lead over Mitt Romney among Latino voters, according to a new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Telemundo poll of Latino respondents.

The challenge for the Obama campaign, however, will be turning out these voters, who aren’t as interested in the election as all other Americans are.

The GOP vote suppression efforts are working at an organic level.  You decrease turnout of minority voters, Republicans win.

In this survey, Obama holds a 34-point lead over Romney among registered Latino voters, 61 to 27 percent. In 2008, according to the exit polls, Obama defeated McCain among this key voting bloc, 67 to 31 percent.

In addition, Obama’s approval rating among all Latino adults stands at 61 percent (compared with 48 percent of all Americans in the new NBC/WSJ poll), and approval of his handling of the economy is at 54 percent (versus 43 percent overall).

Meanwhile, Romney is struggling with Latinos, the poll shows. Just 26 percent view him positively, while 35 percent see him in a negative light. By comparison, Obama’s positive/negative score among Latinos is 58/23 percent.

State efforts like Arizona’s ridiculously racist immigration nonsense (mirrored in other Southern states), Voter ID laws, voter ballot language laws, all designed to keep minority turnout down, but it’s absolutely weighted towards killing Latino turnout.  If Latino turnout is high, Barack Obama will win, and Democrats will keep the Senate.  If they don’t…

But here’s a troubling sign for the Obama campaign: Latinos aren’t as excited about the upcoming election. A combined 68 percent of Latino voters say they are highly interested in the upcoming election (registering an “8”,”9”, or “10” on a 10-point scale). That’s compared with 81 percent of all voters who express high interest.

Getting Latino voters to the polls will decide it in 2012.   The GOP knows it.  They’ve been preparing for this for years now.  There’s a method to this madness, folks.  And it’s working for them.

About the Author
Zandar is ABLC's Cincinnati-area correspondent, covering Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana politics and all the nearly endless unintentional comedy the Tri-State area brings. He's proprietor of Zandar vs. The Stupid, where he's been blogging since 2008, and you can also find him at Balloon Juice and The Reaction as a contributor, or you can yell at him on Twitter at @ZandarVTS.