For Immediate Release
Nov. 6, 9:00 pm Eastern
Contact: Karina Martinez | Karinam@mifamiliavota.org | 858-752-1262
TEXAS LATINO VOTE: Turned Off by Trump’s Racism, Latinos/Communities of Color Join Forces in Historic Senatorial and House Elections
HOUSTON, TX – Latino voters in Texas solidly rejected President Trump’s endorsement of Republican incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz, voting overwhelmingly for Democratic challenger Rep. Beto O’Rourke, according to initial findings from the American Election Eve Poll that was sponsored by numerous groups including Mi Familia Vota (MFV). Texas Latinos picked O’Rourke over Cruz by a 74% to 24% margin, according to the poll.
If elected, O’Rourke would break the state’s endorsement of Trump’s anti-immigrant/border wall policies espoused by Cruz and Texas’ other senator, Republican Majority Whip John Cornyn.
“The surge of Latino voting in Texas and across the U.S. was fueled by opposition to the Trump administration and anger at the president’s attacks against our communities,” said Carlos Duarte, MFV Texas director. “Right now, Texas is ground zero for the immigration fight – DACA and DAPA legal challenges originated in our state. Our community experienced intensified discrimination and abuse with Trump as president. Clearly, we responded to the attacks by showing our strength at the polls.”
Texas also is poised to send its first Latinas to the U.S. House. Among them is state Sen. Sylvia Garcia, whose state legislative seat would become open. Duarte urged Gov. Greg Abbott to hold a special election to replace Garcia.
“We call on Governor Abbott to call an election as soon as possible so the over 800,000 Texans of Senate District 6 have representation by the beginning of the next legislative session in January 2019. The 600,000 Latinos in SD 6 deserve a voice and a vote in the Texas Senate,” Duarte said.
The American Election Eve Poll examined the voting behavior of Latinos and other communities of color in states with competitive elections, including the states where MFV has ground operations, AZ, CA, FL, NV and TX, and included national surveys of House battleground districts and of Native American voters. In the battleground districts, Latinos voted for Democrats over Republicans by a margin of 73% to 23%.
Latinos’ disapproval of Trump’s job performance was 67%, only second to the repudiation of the president expressed by 79% of black voters, according to the poll.
By strong margins, members of communities of color said the president had made them feel angry: 73% of Latinos, 79% of blacks, and 66% of Asian American/Pacific Islanders. Even white voters agreed, by a solid 57% majority, that Trump had said or done something that made them angry, one of many signs in the poll that the president’s ongoing rants against immigrants and communities of color have not produced the political points he sought among white voters.
In Texas, 77% of Latino voters said Trump’s racist statements and policies will cause a major setback to the progress they have made in recent years.
Texas’ Latino voters also said immigration was the top issue politicians should address (34%), followed by improving the economy/job creation and health care, which were tied at 31% and income inequality at 17%.
Results from the American Election Eve Poll will be updated throughout the evening and Wednesday at ElectionEve2018.com
Mi Familia Vota is a national civic engagement organization that unites Latino, immigrant, and allied communities to promote social and economic justice through citizenship workshops, voter registration, and voter participation. Mi Familia Vota has operations in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and Texas.