Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Hispanic voters — more of them, better educated

Tuesday, March 24th, 2020

Hispanics underperform in national elections.  But there are more of them, and they appear to be better educated then in a past

Nearly a million more Hispanics Americans turn 18 every year. That’s roughly an annual increase of 3% of Hispanic eligible voters, vs. an absolute decline in white eligible voters. In 2018, Hispanic Americans made up 12.5% of eligible voters nationwide (28.8 million). They make up 30% and 29.8% of eligible voters in California and Texas, respectively, and almost 1 in 4 eligible voters in Arizona.

Many Hispanic eligible voters are immigrants. But the share that are born in the U.S, which was 73% in 2010, grew to 79% in 2018.

But Hispanics are poor in registering to vote: only 57% of Hispanic eligible voters registered to vote in 2012. Voters / total eligible is about 55% for whites, 40% for Hispanics. Much of this can be explained by whites being older and with more formal education..Both are associated with higher voting reates. U,S. born Hispanics have much higher educational attainment than immigrant Hispanics,

From The New American Economy, Power of the Purse: The Contributions of Hispanic Americans

Also go to Pew Research here.

Why don’t people register to vote? Go here.

 

 

 

Sanders’ ambivalence on immigration

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020

Bernie Sander’s position on immigration reflects a deep skepticism about globalization. He has taken positions to support the legal and economic protections of low wage immigrants, is squarely in favor of granting unauthorized workers citizenship status “within five years,” and supporting family reunification-related immigration But (per his website) he takes no position on immigration of skilled workers and guest worker programs. And he opposed NAFTA, which led to more integration of the Mexican and American economies including their workforces.

If president, I expect that he will attempt to reverse all of Trump’s executive orders but also take the position that immigrants take jobs from Americans.

His historical record on immigration reflects the ambiguous position of Democrats on immigration. Unions until the 2000s often were opposed to immigration that appeared to compete with Americans for jobs. Democrats became increasingly more supportive of immigration. After 2010, Democrat turned. much more positive than Republicans about immigration (prior post here).

He voted against 2007 immigration bill, even though it promised legal status for unauthorized immigrants. The failure of passage resulted in the almost complete breakdown in bipartisan approach to immigration and to the extensive use of executive orders by Obama and then Trump to make immigration reform without Congressional approval. His vote supports the notion that Sander is not one to work toward compromise on difficult issues.

The bill was the last serious effort for some kind of comprehensive immigration reform, and compromise between the goal of normalization of status and enforcement. Supporters included Senator Kennedy and the senate Dem and Rep leadership. (An analysis of the bill is here.)

Vox writes that “Sanders broke with prominent Democrats to oppose a key comprehensive immigration reform bill in 2007 that would have provided a path to citizenship for millions of unauthorized immigrants living in the US. He opposed measures to increase the number of guest workers and offer green cards to citizens of countries with low levels of immigration. And he once voted for an amendment supporting a group of vigilantes that sought to take immigration enforcement into their own hands along the border (though he has since disavowed the group.)”

Sanders’ success with Latino voters in Nevada

Sunday, February 23rd, 2020

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders was trouncing other candidates with Latino and Hispanic caucus-goers in Nevada, according to NBC News entrance polling results that showed him with 53% of the vote with that demographic in the seven-person race. (From USA Today)

Latinos are the fastest growing group of eligible voters in the country, increasing at about 3% a year. 63% of 2020 Latino caucus-goers said in entrance polls they were attending their first caucuses.

The entrance polls showed former Vice President Joe Biden at 16% of the Latino and Hispanic vote, former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 9%, billionaire activist Tom Steyer with 8% and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren with 7%.

Overall, Sanders leads among nonwhite voters as well. Nevada, the third state to vote, is the first with a significant minority population. About three in 10 Nevadans are Latinos, 10% of the population is black, and 10% is Asian American and Pacific Islander.

Vox said that Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez calls him “Tio Bernie.” His Latino support is grounded in policies that appeal to Latino voters: immigration, health care, and the economy. His immigration plan, which he has framed in the context of his signature issue of worker solidarity, is arguably the most progressive of the Democratic fiel

His immigration plan is certainly the longest.

 

What Hispanics think of Trump

Sunday, January 26th, 2020

The Hispanic community is mixed in its opinion about Trump, shown in a September 2019 poll by Univision. Let’s look at “approve”: of Trump. South Americans were the most favorable, 39%, followed by Cubans (33%), Porto Ricans (21%, Mexicans (18%), Central America (14%) and Dominicans (11%). Approval rose with level of education – college grads 25% approved.

This progression parallels how they think if there is a problem of racism against Latinos and immigrants (Cubans at 49% “yes” and rising thereafter).

For a balanced sample of all Hispanics, 22% approved of Trump. Of Hispanics who voted Republican, only 38% approved. According to 538, 42% of Americans approved of Trump in September 2019.

The Hispanic electorate in Nov 2020

Tuesday, January 21st, 2020

Since 2000, the greatest racial/ethnic gainers in total eligible voters were Hispanics, from 7.4% to 13.3% of total eligible voters.

From 2004 though 2018, the number of vote-eligible Hispanics rose by 66% even though the entire population of the U.S, grew by only 10%.

A record 32 million Latinos are projected to be eligible to vote, exceeding the number of black eligible voters for the first time.

However, the turn out rate of Hispanics is relatively low. Since 1990, Hispanic turnout (actual voters / eligible voters) has averaged 15% below that of whites. So, even though Hispanic turnout increased by 40% between the two off-year elections of 2014 and 2018, it still in 2018 was only 40% vs. 56% for whites. In the presidential election in 2016, Hispanic turnout was 48% vs 63% for whites.

Complicating the picture for Democrats in 2020 is that in relatively few swing states there are many Hispanic voters.

For Democrats, Arizona is probably the state most important for high Hispanic turnout because of the relatively high Hispanic population (24% of all eligible voters, per Pew) and the chance to swing the election results from Republican to Democrat.

In five swing districts won narrowly by a Rep in 2018, the Hispanic electorate is at least 15%.

 

How anti-immigrant rumors work for Trump

Monday, September 16th, 2019

From the first minutes of his campaign through today Donald Trump and his supporters have started or fanned rumors and conspiracy theories about immigrants – murderers and rapists….M 13…. caravans funded by Soros…. taking our jobs. What does Trump know about how these work? A lot, if you apply Pascal Boyer’s analysis of collective behavior.

Evolutionary anthropologist Pascal Boyer (author of Minds Make Society) presents a model of collective behavior which helps to explain this unending stream of provocations.  Boyer draws upon evidence found in small tribal cultures and advanced states.

Trump understood long ago that a politician can mobilize followers by constantly arousing the deeply embedded human desire for tight, reciprocating ties.  The designating of others as outsiders is part of recruitment and boundary making. Stereotyping and constant threat detection become standard.  To a coalition member, creating or passing along rumors and conspiracy theories does not require you to actually believe in them. We do a lot of things together in earnest without deep belief in their overt explanation.  The member basically wants to experience a fierce re-confirmation of the coalition, not to win a debate.

Trump constantly makes up moral transgressors and their victims.  Moralizing is a form of group enforcement.

Boyer cites two general habits of thinking. One involves what we retain in memory. Most people typically retain in memory receiving and passing on threats (“The lettuce may be carrying a botulism”), even if very improbable, more than receiving and passing on simply negative information (“Often the produce there is not very fresh”).

The second involves popular perceptions about economics: (1) The economy is zero-sum game. (2) The world is full of people who want a free ride. And, (3) bargaining prowess provides a huge advantage.  Trump has been suggesting that free loaders include pretty much the entire immigrant community. The Democratic party encourages free loading. Only he can fix immigration, using his bargaining skills. See him drive hard bargains with Central American countries! Any minute how, another lightning-like tweet will remind us how he is on the job.

This political style of his makes it difficult for Trump to act like a compromiser, or to show compassion,  such as letting Dorian survivors stay for a while. That would confuse his followers. He has no interest in general reform of immigration law, as that will require compromise.

Who voted in 2018?

Friday, June 14th, 2019

The mid-term 2018 voter population was more educated and racially diverse than those of earlier midterms. See the tables below.

Census Bureau’s estimates show that the 2018 turnout—at 53.4 percent—was the highest in midterm elections since it started collecting voter turnout numbers (voters per 100 citizens) in 1978; and for the first time since 1982, it rose above 50 percent.

All major racial/ethnic groups turned up at the polls in higher numbers, but the biggest gains accrued to Democratic-leaning Hispanics and Asian Americans—up 13 percent since 2014.

the CPS turnout data reveal that 18 to 29-year-olds of each major racial group showed substantially higher turnout in 2018 than four years prior—more than doubling for young Hispanics and Asian Americans and nearly doubling for young white citizens.

It was also younger. Turnout rates among groups are becoming more equal (see table).

Due to the higher turnout of 18 to 29-year-olds and 30 to 44-year-olds, the under-age 45 population rose to 35.4 percent of voters in 2018, up from just 30.3 percent in 2014. Most notably, those ages 65 and above made up a slightly smaller share of voters, 27.1 percent in 2018, despite the continued entry of the large baby boom generation into this age group.

From here.

Trump creating an opportunity for Democrats to lead on immigration

Tuesday, April 9th, 2019

The president’s purge of Homeland Security leadership this week does two things: first, that whatever might be called the Administration’s immigration policy has become hostage to a Mexican border enforcement policy, one which the courts have repeatedly curtailed and to a fight with the countries of origin for migrants at the border. Second, the shakeup is punishing the congressional Republicans, who are more attuned to the complexities of immigration on America’s main streets. Congressional Republicans have no independent voice on immigration.

This gives to congressional Democrats an opportunity to show leadership on immigration – something they have avoided — and likely will continue to avoid. Is there any Democratic presidential candidate whose immigration views are known, much less designed to lead as opposed to react?

An immigration policy needs to take into account three things: the impact on the United States, the impact on the countries of origin, and the migrants themselves.  Democrats have a golden opportunity to articulate a constructive, achievable approach to all three.

The Democrats could show (probably will not) an awareness of both the pluses and minuses of immigration today in America. The minuses generally involve problems in cultural integration.  They could show (this will be easy) a better understanding of how to work with Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, the key countries of origins. And they could give a lot more attention to crafting immigration policies which place the right emphasis on who is admitted (limiting family related immigration to immediate family and expanding economic categories of immigrants).

 

The divergence over immigration

Monday, April 8th, 2019

Democrats and Republicans largely thought alike about immigration until after around 2010. A widening gap grew not only over immigration, but also over other issues such as over race and racial justice. Democrats have moved much more left since about 2010.

From an article in Vox

 

Immigrant representation in Congress: 68

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

14 members of Congress are foreign-born and 54 are children of immigrants in the 116th Congress. That’s 16% of the Senate (16) and 12% of the House (52).

19 represent California, or 35% of that state’s entire representation. California’s population is ¼ foreign born, and contains ¼ of all foreign born persons in the country.

Newly elected Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., was born in Mogadishu, Somalia, and fled with her family in 1991 after the country’s civil war started. Her family spent four years in a refugee camp in Kenya and later moved to America, where she became a citizen in 2000. Rep. Tom Malinowski, D-N.J., was born in communist Poland before coming to the U.S. at age 6 with his mother.

Others had parents who fled their native countries. Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., was born to a Polish mother who survived the Holocaust and came to the U.S. in 1950. Rep. Joe Neguse, also a Democrat representing Colorado, was born to Eritrean parents who fled their country in 1980 when it was embroiled in war with Ethiopia.

The countries most represented by current or children of immigrants are: Mexico (13), Cuba (8), Germany (6), and India (5).

Under the U.S. Constitution, an immigrant taking office in the House must be a U.S. citizen for seven years or more, age 25 or older and living in the state where he or she is elected. Nine years of citizenship are required to serve in the Senate, and the person must be 30 or older and live in the represented state when elected.

By the authors of this study: “In this analysis, we examined lawmakers’ birthplaces and parentage through news stories, obituaries, candidate statements, and congressional and genealogical records, as well as contacting congressional staff.”

From Pew Research.