Pollster says GOP 'making gains' among Hispanic voters, but Democrat Party exodus still elusive
'It's moved a little faster than I would have expected,' legendary pollster Scott Rasmussen says
Republicans are "making gains among Hispanic voters" heading into the 2024 election, pollster Scott Rasmussen said Monday.
"What I've seen overall is absolutely Republicans are making gains among Hispanic voters," Rasmussen told Just the News. "They're making lesser gains but [also] starting to chip away a little bit at African-American voters."
The GOP has for years made grassroots efforts to appeal to Hispanic voters, arguing their values and concerns continue to be more closely aligned with conservatives than liberals, particularly on issues like abortion and border security.
In 2022, Democrats won among black, Hispanic, Asian and Pacific Islander voters, according to exit polls conducted by major networks and Edison Research.
But compared to the 2018 midterms, Hispanic and Asian support for the GOP in last year's midterms increased 10 and 17 points respectively. Support from Black voters shifted about 6 points to the right.
Rasmussen said the shift among Hispanics this presidential election cycle has "moved a little faster than I would have expected, but, you know, these changes don't take place overnight."
He also said the Republican Party began making inroads with Hispanic voters prior to Donald Trump winning the presidency in 2016.
"It started before Trump, but Trump did reach out in a big way and that was began to accelerate the process," he said.
He said President Biden's handling of the U.S. economy and border security appear to be accelerating the movement of Hispanics voters toward Republicans.
"There are a lot of factors that go into your party identity," he said. "It's like watching a glacier move. ... Right now we're in a period of seeing the Hispanic vote move a little more aggressively in the Republican direction, a little faster than maybe many people thought possible."
Rasmussen said progressive candidates – with "woke" political agendas – appear to be one of the reasons that more Hispanic voters might turn away from the Democratic Party and vote Republican heading into 2024.
"The Hispanic vote is much more conservative culturally," he said. "The second thing is the Democratic [Party] focus on identity politics. There are a lot of Hispanic voters who have different views on immigration, but those who came into the country legally would like to see others do the same. So I don't think you can necessarily tie it to the Biden administration directly because it way preceded the Biden administration, which right now is getting poor marks on handling the economy."
In the last election cycle, House Republicans established the Hispanic Leadership Trust to support Latino candidates. There were 30 Hispanic GOP candidates in House races. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has said he sought to make the GOP the most diverse to date through stronger recruitment efforts.
GOP targets for its ramped up outreach to Hispanic voters includes swing states Nevada and Arizona as well as traditionally blue states like New York.
According to a Cook Political Report analysis, a "tectonic shift in the national Latino vote, along the lines of what we saw in Florida perhaps, is still theoretically possible."
Support for Republicans among Cuban voters is at a record high, according to data from the 2020 election.
On Monday, Texas Republican Rep. Michael McCaul, House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman, Florida Republican Rep. Maria Salazar, chairwoman of the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee, and members of the committee, held a roundtable discussion with pro-Democracy Cuban activists Rosa María Payá and Orlando Gutiérrez-Boronat.