Decision 2020

Latino Voters Prove to be a Complex Demographic

NBC Universal, Inc.

The voter turnout was near record-setting this election cycle, and one of the groups most responsible for that surge was Latinos. But it’s the political diversity within that demographic that continues to confound pollsters.

“Every vote should count,” said voter Edgar Ochoa. “Everyone who can get out, had the privilege to vote, should utilize that.”

Long lines filled San Jose’s Mexican Heritage Plaza Tuesday as voters went out in droves in the heart of the city’s Latino community.

But latinos proved, once again, they do not vote as a single block.

Analysts say Latinos, Mexican-Americans in Arizona, helped Joe Biden, while Latinos, Cuban-Americans, helped deliver Florida to Donald Trump.

“This is something that needs to be clear, and something I’ve focused on,” said political science professor Andres Quintero. “The latino vote is not monolithic. It's not one group.”

Quintero teaches at Evergreen Valley College and says it’s a multi-pronged approach with the Latino community.

“We know there are things the Latino community does prioritize. Immigration being one. But it's not like the number one thing,” he said, adding that jobs and education are also high on the Latino voter list.

He advises political strategists to stop thinking there is one kind of "Latino voter,” and start seeing the various Latino communities for what they are -- unique individuals with very different political leanings.

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