Predicting Latino Partisanship in the United States
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Although Latinos have traditionally identified with the Democratic Party, significant support for George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 seemed to indicate that party realignment was possible. At the very least, it demonstrated the Latino voters could "swing" very easily from one party to another. The continuing polarization of American politics has enhanced the question of Latino partisan commitment for both parties as the latter seek strategies to attract a segment of the electorate seemingly in flux. Using data from the Pew Hispanic Center's 2004 National Survey of Latinos, our study examined factors that are most crucial in predicting the partisan identification (PID) of Latinos. Our results demonstrated support for the following three hypotheses: 1) Latino partisanship is more heavily influenced by political and social factors that by economic (SES), 2) Latinos identify primarily with the Democratic Party because of their experiences with discrimination, and 3) Issues of morality and religiosity are important influences in Latino partisan identification. Thus, our study can help to guide strategists of both parties in their attempts to attract the Latino vote.