The Latino vote is increasingly recognized as important in U.S. elections. The number of Hispanics eligible to vote is now up to 11% of the electorate. But Hispanics tend not to vote and not to think about voting to the same degree that other groups do, a survey out today says.
The Pew Research Center says 61 percent of the Latino voters surveyed say they’ve thought a lot about the election, an unfavorable comparison to the registered voters in the electorate.
The study also points out that the turnout rate for eligible Latinos tends to lag historically and it probably will this year, too. Seventy-seven percent of Latinos surveyed say they are “absolutely certain” they will vote this year. Eighty-nine percent of all registered voters in the survey say they will.
And the Voter ID laws that are in effect. Most don’t think that will affect them, the respondents said. And most Latinos favor the idea.
One recent development that could potentially have an impact on the Latino turnout rate is the passage of state laws that require voters to show photo identification in order to cast a ballot. This year 11 states–Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, South Dakota and Tennessee–have such laws in effect.1 Together, these states are home to 15% of all Latino eligible voters.2
According to the new survey, fully 97% of all Latino registered voters–as well as a nearly identical 95% of Latino registered voters in those 11 states–say they are confident they have the identification they will need to vote on Election Day.
The survey also finds broad support among Latino registered voters for voter photo ID laws; 71% favor them, nearly as high a share as among the general public (77%).