Hispanics Backing Clinton Over Trump in Five Key States

Hillary Clinton is leading Donald Trump among Hispanics in the key battleground states of Florida, Ohio, Nevada, Colorado and North Carolina, according to a new survey by FAU.

Clinton leads Trump among younger Hispanic voters (18 to 34 years old) in all five states by a range of 24 to 45 points. Clinton is also winning among Hispanic Independents in every state except Ohio.


By james-hellegaard | 9/22/2016

Hillary Clinton is leading Donald Trump among Hispanics in the key battleground states of Florida, Ohio, Nevada, Colorado and North Carolina, according to a new survey by the Florida Atlantic University Business and Economics Polling Initiative (FAU BEPI).

Of the five states polled, Florida provides the most Electoral College votes. The race there is shaping up as one of the closest races in the country, and Hispanics, which account for nearly one in every five voters (19 percent), could make the difference. While U.S. President Barack Obama won Florida in 2008 and 2012 with 57 percent and 60 percent of the Hispanic vote, U.S. President George W. Bush took the state in 2004 thanks in part to support from 56 percent of Hispanic votes. The latest poll shows Clinton leads Trump among Hispanics in Florida by a margin of 53 percent to 34 percent.

In Ohio, where a growing Hispanic population accounts for 4 percent of the total vote, Clinton leads Trump 51 percent to 29 percent. In 2008, 65 percent of Hispanics in Ohio voted for Obama and in 2012, 54 percent voted to re-elect him.

Hispanics are estimated to make up 23 percent of the vote in Nevada. They have historically voted Democrat, with President Obama winning 76 percent of their votes in 2008 and 71 percent in 2012. Clinton’s numbers are not as impressive as Obama’s in the latest FAU poll with a 54 to 25 percent lead over Trump among Hispanics.

In Colorado, where Hispanics are estimated to make up 15 percent of the state vote, Clinton is outpacing Trump 68 percent to 16 percent. President Obama won 61 percent of the vote in 2008 and 75 percent in 2012.

North Carolina Hispanics, which comprise an estimated 5 percent of the total vote, favor Clinton 57 percent to 29 percent over Trump. Obama lost the state in 2012 despite winning votes from 68 percent of Hispanics.

“Hispanics are one of the fastest growing populations in the United States. Republicans cannot continue to underperform with them and maintain a realistic ability to win some of these battleground states,” said Kevin Wagner, Ph.D., associate professor of political science at FAU and a research fellow of the Initiative. “The electoral map becomes increasingly difficult for Republicans if they cannot narrow these large margins.” 

Clinton leads Trump among younger Hispanic voters (18 to 34 years old) in all five states by a range of 24 to 45 points. Clinton is also winning among Hispanic Independents in every state except Ohio.

Trump suffers from a very unfavorable image in every state, faring worst in Colorado with nearly 80 percent of Hispanics having an unfavorable opinion of him. Trump’s highest favorable rating is in Florida at 33 percent. Clinton has more than 50 percent of favorable ratings among Hispanics in every state except Florida, where she is at 49 percent.

Hispanics in every state view Clinton as the better candidate to handle all the major election issues they were polled on, including: the economy, education, terrorism/national security, healthcare, immigration and treatment of minorities. When Hispanics were asked about the Affordable Care Act, a majority of voters in four of the five states (Colorado being the exception) favor repealing it. The respondents who want to repeal Obamacare support Trump by double-digit margins.

“Clinton is doing well among young Hispanic voters, now she has to motivate them to go out and vote,” said Monica Escaleras, Ph.D., director of the BEPI. “The Affordable Care Act, however, is hurting Clinton in four of the states and might be used as a wedge issue by Trump to improve his position in those states.”

The poll was conducted in English and Spanish from Sept. 15-19. Data was collected with a mix mode of online and Interactive Voice Recognition (IVR) software. The polling sample was a random selection of registered voters. Each state sample consisted of 400 registered Hispanics with a margin of error of +/-4.9 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.

For more information, contact Monica Escaleras, Ph.D., director of the BEPI, at 561-297-1312 or mescaler@fau.edu or visit BEPI polls.

-FAU-

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