Latino Catholics: Immigration, Not Religion, Decided Vote

Those who think that the immigration issue was not a primary concern for the American Latino community in the 2012 election may want to think again

While the Catholic Church strongly urged its parishioners to vote against a president that championed secular values, Obama only lost 7% of white Catholic voters but gained votes among Latino Catholics. The religious component of their vote became secondary to the immigration issue.

Jewish support dropped by 9% for Obama, and white evangelical support dropped 6%. In fact, Obama lost support across the board from the religiously affiliated Judeo-Christian community -- except from Latino Catholic voters, 3% more of whom voted for the president than in 2008. The Latino Catholic vote has swung markedly upward for Obama; in 2000 and 2004 they gave both Al Gore and John Kerry 65% of their vote, while in 2008 that number climbed to 72% for Obama. In Tuesday's election, a whopping 75% of Latino Catholics voted for Barack Obama.

According to an ImpreMedia/Latino Decisions poll, 57% of Latinos were less enthusiastic about Romney than Obama because of his immigration stance. One other fact for Republicans to take into consideration: although the poll said 39% of Latinos voted to support Democrats, 36% said they voted to support other Latinos. That figure rose to 39% among Latino voters aged 31-44 and to 41% among voters 18-30. 


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