Latino voters sticking with Obama, Democrats: Poll

December 29th, 2011 - 3:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Barack Obama Washington, Dec 29 (IANS) Latino voters strongly support President Barack Obama and his Democratic Party despite dissatisfaction with the administration’s deportation policies, according to a new poll.

The survey by the Pew Hispanic Centre released Wednesday was good news for Obama and Democrats for next year’s election, as Hispanics are the fastest-growing population group in the country and comprise a major voting bloc.

According to the survey, Latino registered voters favour Obama over Republican presidential hopefuls Mitt Romney or Texas Governor Rick Perry by margin of more than 2-to-1.

The results are similar to the presidential election in 2008, when Obama got 67 percent of the Latino vote compared with 31 percent for Republican candidate Senator John McCain.

Hispanic voters have traditionally identified with the Democratic Party, and the Pew survey’s results showed that connection continues.

It said two-thirds of Hispanic registered voters identified with or leaned toward the Democratic Party, while 20 percent felt that way about the Republican Party.

“It is interesting that among Latino voters, the voters who are registered, there is a lot of support for the Democrats, but also for Barack Obama,” Mark Hugo Lopez, executive director of the Pew Hispanic Centre, told CNN.

While showing strong Latino support for Obama and Democrats, the survey also showed Hispanics dislike immigration policies of the Obama administration, which increased deportations to 395,000 in 2009 and 387,000 in 2010.

According to the Pew survey, 59 percent of Latino respondents disapproved of the administration’s handling of deportations, while 27 percent approved.

At the same time, the survey found that less than half of the Hispanic respondents — 41 percent-knew that more deportations were occurring under the Obama administration than the Bush administration that preceded it.

Hispanics accounted for 97 percent of deportees in 2010, according to the US Department of Homeland Security.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)

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