Latino voters provide key votes for Democrats in Colorado Midterms

Colorado’s Latino voters showed a strong preference for Democrats in the 2022 midterm election, according to a new exit poll that says Latino voters have been mobilized to vote based on the issues they care about.

The Colorado Latino Exit Survey, which was published for the first time this year, was organized by the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights and Voces Unidas and conducted by BSP Research. The poll spoke to 531 Latino and Latino voters statewide, with a larger sample in the new 8th congressional district due to its high number of Latino voters. It found overwhelmingly that Colorado’s Latino voters cared more about voting for issues they care about and making positive change than political allegiance.

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Dusti Gurule, President and CEO of COLOR, noted that the exit poll results reflect the priorities outlined in the Colorado Latino Policy Agenda, an annual report on the political views of Colorado Latinos, which ranks economic issues as the top policy concerns were classified. She specifically added that Latino-Coloradans are more likely to vote for candidates who support expanding and protecting access to abortion.

“One of the many intriguing findings of this exit poll … is that these economic concerns did not provoke a backlash from the party in power, as many expected,” Gurule said in a Thursday news conference. “But really, it was more of a need to align their values ​​that helped propel candidates and issues up and down to victory.”

Gabe Sanchez, BSP’s vice president of research, explained the findings at Thursday’s press conference and similarly emphasized the importance of values ​​for Latino voices. He said the results of the Colorado election outcome survey show the importance that the Latino electorate had for the election overall — specifically, that US Representative-elect Yadira Caraveo won Colorado’s 8th Circuit seat and became Colorado’s first Latina to do so served in the US House of Representatives, made history. Caraveo, currently a state representative, was running in a new congressional district against Republican Senator Barbara Kirkmeyer.

There was speculation that there would be a Red Wave election fueled primarily by the Latino movement towards the Republican Party…I will note that there was movement but it was relatively modest and consistent with that , which is what we usually see in elections outside of the year.

The electorate’s focus on positive impact prompted Latino voters to support certain voting issues in Colorado, including those supporting affordable housing and free meals for schoolchildren by a 3-to-1 advantage and Democratic candidates by a 2-to-1. 1-benefit support, Sanchez said. He also noted that the Latino electorate voted more blue than any other electorate in Colorado, meaning the popular vote had an impact in getting Democrats across the line. For example, in the US Senate election, 69% of Latino voters said they supported incumbent Democratic Senator Michael Bennet, who defeated GOP challenger Joe O’Dea, and in the eight US House of Representatives elections statewide 72% the Democratic candidate.

“There was speculation that there would be a red wave election fueled primarily by the Latino movement toward the Republican Party,” Sanchez said. “I will note that there was movement, but it was relatively modest and consistent with what we typically see in off-year elections where many voters are moving away from the incumbent president, in this context Biden’s party, the Democrats – so there was movement, but it wasn’t earth-shattering.”

Looking specifically at the 8th congressional district, the Colorado Latino Policy Agenda highlighted that Latinos value other Latinos being elected to office, meaning that 75% of Latinos in the district support Caraveo. Since the 2020 election, the poll found that Latino voters in the district have shifted toward more liberal attitudes and ideologies.

“We can definitely say that if the Latino electorate weren’t tough on her, she wouldn’t have been the first Latina to ever move from the state of Colorado to the US House of Representatives,” Sanchez said of Caraveo.

Across the rest of the state, however, the poll found that just 19% of Latinos said their ideology had become more liberal, compared to 24% of Latinos who said they were now more conservative, while 52% of Latino voters in Colorado said theirs Ideology has become more liberal. Nothing has changed since 2020. Sanchez said that’s a fairly modest shift compared to states like Florida or Texas, especially considering how the president’s party is trending in the midterm elections.

The survey also asked respondents when they had decided who and what they would vote for in the election, and 42% of respondents in the 8th Circuit and across Colorado said it was more than a month before the time their participation in the survey. which was held from October 10th to November 8th. Sanchez said this suggests Latino voters need earlier contact with parties, candidates and supporters, with information about ballot initiatives and candidates.

A fifth of Latino voters from Colorado were voting for the first time in 2022, the poll also found. But it wasn’t just young voters — while 27% of Latino first-time voters fell in the 18-29 age group, another 23% of Latino voters ages 30-49 were first-time voters, as well as 14% of voters over 50 years.

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