There were a lot of predictions made in 2016. Among the most common? That Donald Trump would “awaken a sleeping giant.” Specifically, pundits said Trump’s rhetoric on the border would motivate Latinos to hand him a defeat. Now, they did help someone lose on election night.
It just wasn’t Trump.
Exit polling showed the Republican outsider got twenty-nine percent of the Hispanic vote–more than Mitt Romney, Bob Dole, or George Bush, Sr. Some leftists seemed to consider it a personal insult; Cenk Uygur demanded, “Latinos, what have you done?” as if they owed him a explanation.
Republicans also received twenty-nine percent of Hispanic votes in the 2018 midterms (forty-five percent in Florida), and Trump’s support continues to climb: several polls this year put his approval rating among Hispanics between forty-five and fifty percent. This has people like columnist Thomas B. Edsall asking, “Why aren’t Democrats winning the Hispanic vote 80-20 or 90-10?” Well, here’s a possibility:
Trump is delivering.
His program of regulatory reform, tax cuts, and increased energy production has reduced unemployment to its lowest level in decades; among Latinos, it’s close to the lowest point ever recorded. Meanwhile, their inflation-adjusted median household income is up while poverty is down.
Then there’s the fact that transnational gangs like MS-13 disproportionately prey on Latino communities. Victims can be decapitated, carved open, or raped and labeled as “property.” The Trump administration has been cracking down on illegal gang members, at least when it can--Democrat-run sanctuary jurisdictions refuse to cooperate with immigration authorities.
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But there’s another possible reason for why Hispanics are warming to Trump: they can see the alternative.
Most Hispanics don’t support killing children in the womb, so the idea that they would be okay with killing them after birth seems like a stretch. However, that didn’t stop all but three Senate Democrats from opposing a bill to protect babies who survive failed abortions. Gianna Jessen was one of those children; Jessen was delivered during a botched abortion, something she testified about before Congress:
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Democrats have also consistently opposed school choice, with President Obama even attempting to shutdown DC’s voucher program. In contrast, the Trump administration has sought to give parents more options. A majority of Hispanics support school choice efforts, and for good reason: their children are more likely to get trapped in failing schools and have a better chance of going to college when they participate in school choice programs.
Liberals may scratch their head at the president’s growing Latino support, but reasons aren’t mysterious. Because while the Democrats keep pushing identity politics and Russian hoaxes, Trump is offering something else.
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