Whether President Barack Obama was playing politics or not by announcing a shift in his administration’s immigration policy on Friday, the political gains are already unmistakable.A new poll of registered Latino voters in five key battleground states has already found a huge shift in enthusiasm and support for Obama after his administration’s policy shift, which will stop the deportation of some young illegal immigrants in good legal standing.
The polling firm, Latino Decisions, found that 49 per cent of Latino voters surveyed in Florida, Virginia, Nevada, Colorado, and Arizona are now more enthusiastic about Obama, compared with 14 per cent who said they were less enthusiastic. That’s an incredible change from early 2012, when 53 per cent said they were less enthusiastic about the president, compared with 30 per cent that were more enthusiastic.
Here’s a look:
Photo: Latino Decisions
Compare that to the Latino reaction to some of Mitt Romney’s policy statements on immigration — specifically those advocating “self-deportation” and supporting the Arizona immigration laws as a “model for the nation” — and there is a clear divide. In the new poll, just 10 per cent of registered Latino voters were more enthusiastic about Romney, compared with 59 per cent who were less enthusiastic.
To recap, that’s a positive-34 enthusiasm score for Obama, compared with a negative-49 one for Romney.
Obama’s boost in the new poll could add to what is already a burgeoning divide between candidates among Latino voters. A Latino Decisions poll in early June found that Obama’s support among Latino voters outpaced Romney by an astounding 43 points.
It’s even more important when considering the swing states from which the poll’s results come. A high Latino turnout in any of those states could swing momentum in Obama’s favour in the fall.
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