There is this idea pushed forth by political observers that Latinos are a growing voter base and that they are on the verge of substantially changing the face of the American electorate. Each election cycle it is the Latino vote that will make the difference and each time it fizzles into nothing. The 2020 elections are no different. The Latinos will make a difference some argue but the reality is that the Latino vote will make little difference.
There are three reasons for this.
Latinos Are Not Monolithic
Contrary to the national political narrative, Latinos are not a monolithic voting block following the same ideology. Latinos are a diverse group of people with differing world views and different political agendas. Cubans, for example, are less concerned about immigration as many have unimpeded access to the country and instead are more concerned about socialism and ending the Castro regime in Cuba.
Central Americans, on the other hand, are more concerned with immigration policies.
Latinos have a differing world view and thus are politically active on their specific personal issues.
Latinos Have No Good Choice in 2020
Many Latinos, especially those from Central America, have no real choice in the 2020 elections. Donald Trump has demonized immigrants and targeted Latino immigrants for deportation. The Trump administration has also demonized Mexicans.
But the Joe Biden camp is no better. Biden represents the immigration deportations of the Obama administration and thus for many Latinos, neither a vote for Trump nor one for Biden is something they see as changing their lives in the next election.
Many Latinos are just not motivated to throw their hat behind Biden because of his anti-immigration historical stance. Thus, support for Biden among Latino immigrants just does not exist.
Latinos Do Not Vote
But the most important thing remains that, unfortunately, Latinos just are not motivated to vote. Why remains up for debate but some of it can be traced to being disillusioned with both political parties. Except for Cubans who support the Republicans’ stance on Cuba, most Latinos see the Democrats as anti-immigrant and the Republicans do themselves no favors among the immigrant communities when they allow Donald Trump to speak for them.
That reality translates into few Latinos engaging politically to the extent that they become a factor in national elections.
As such, the illusive Latino vote remains unattainable.