El American - The Rise of the Conservative Hispanic Vote
Nov 14, 2022
A much-discussed narrative that emerged after the 2020 presidential election cycle was the Hispanic community’s support for America First policies. In that election, more than 16 million Hispanics voted. As millions of Americans continue to consider whether conservative or liberal policies will benefit their families the most, many eyes are on the Hispanic community and their increasingly prominent voice.
In the past five years, an unprecedented number of Hispanic voters have embraced America First policies allowing them to advance their education, seek gainful employment, start new businesses, and contribute to the success of our country. They champion the creation of jobs and opportunities, support freedom, and want to ensure their families are safe and secure within our borders. Hispanics are inspired by what we can do as a country to guarantee prosperity, achieve upward mobility and opportunity for all, and build generational wealth.
In a Scott Rasmussen/RMG Research survey from earlier this year, Hispanics were asked about their support for the 10 pillars of the America First Agenda. More than 82% favor making the U.S. economy work for all Americans. Seventy-six percent favor putting patients and doctors in charge of healthcare decisions, and 78% support giving parents more control over their kids’ education. Almost 80% support America First policies to reduce crime in our communities, and 73% favor efforts to secure the border, end human trafficking and defeat the drug cartels. With inflation still the main concern on the minds of many Americans, especially Hispanics, 80% support America First policies that make America once again energy independent.
In a poll from a few weeks ago commissioned by Bienvenido, results showed that in the last five years, Hispanics that became more conservative or less liberal made up 22% of those surveyed, for a net gain of three points. While Hispanics are about evenly divided as to whether their culture is more conservative or more liberal, a plurality of Hispanics believe their community is becoming increasingly conservative with nearly half of the poll’s respondents (49%) saying they have a Hispanic family member or friend who has become more conservative in the past five years and 35% saying they do not.
Equally, many Hispanic voters have been turned off by the extremism of liberal policies that make job and business creation more burdensome, curtail parents’ authority over their children, seek to expand public control of healthcare, impose vaccine mandates and business shutdowns, defund the police, and make America less safe. Among Hispanics, the Bienvenido poll found that 64% believe we need more security along our southern border. More than 75% believe those that are in the United States illegally and have committed serious crimes should be deported.
Hispanic voters are also more closely aligned with conservatives on hot-button cultural issues, such as classroom lessons on gender identity and whether children should attend drag queen performances, with 57% and 61% percent believing it is inappropriate, respectively. The Hispanic community is stepping up and fighting a new war, the culture war created by the Left that mocks the values of faith, family, and love of country that have been interwoven in Hispanic culture.
As the conservative movement continues to face relentless opposition from the Left and the media, we must stay focused on the policies that will benefit the American people and partner with those who want to nurture these policies and help change hearts and minds. Americans are contending with several major challenges, including rising crime, historic inflation, and an unsecured border, that threaten to change our very way of life in this country. Today, we know that America First policies are needed now more than ever to turn our Nation away from socialism and set us back on a path toward success, prosperity, and safety.
In the Bienvenido poll, Hispanics were asked what they thought were the important issues facing the country. Not surprisingly, inflation, jobs and the economy, and crime were main issues of concern. Fifty-six percent of Hispanics believe the country is on the wrong track. The Hispanic community knows the economy is in bad shape and that crime is getting worse. Seventy-four percent of Hispanics believe the country’s economic condition is fair or poor and sixty percent of crime getting worse. Claims from some on the Left that the economy is strong and that inflation is just temporary are not helping attract Hispanics to their policies.
The probability that the Left changes its policies any time soon is low because its funders and intellectual leadership are in a commanding position within their own movement. Fringe voices on the Left now seem to be controlling the direction of the current administration and promoting a radical new agenda for the country. Because of this, Hispanics are indicating their growing preference for America First policies.
The challenge for the conservative movement is to be proactive. It isn’t enough for the Left to lose Hispanics – conservatives must continue to win them over. What comes next is difficult to foresee. It is entirely possible that Hispanics writ large – even Mexican Americans in California – shift rightward and stay there. It is just as possible they’ll normalize within the general population and become a group that is open to considering new policies based on their individual circumstances.
What won’t happen, though, is a return to the past. U.S. Hispanics aren’t likely going back to their days when they overwhelmingly support liberal policies. A growing number of Hispanics have been turned off by the extremism of today’s liberal policies and support an America First agenda that allows them to advance their education, seek gainful employment, start new businesses, keep their families and communities safe, and contribute to the success of our country. Thus, the era of political monoculture is over.
Jorge Martinez is the Hispanic Outreach Strategist & Spanish Spokesperson for the America First Policy Institute. He previously served as press secretary at the U.S. Justice Department. Abraham Enriquez is President of Bienvenido, an organization dedicated to conservative Hispanic outreach.