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Early Hispanic Vote Shows Why GOP Needed To Embrace Diversity

October 25, 2016

There have been endless news stories and conversations about the blow-back that would occur to the Republican Party if they did not alter their views about Hispanics and Latinos in America.  A major political party can not act bigoted and present harmful policy ideas for millions of people and families and then expect to be rewarded on Election Day.

The results are already demonstrating my point.

There is a 99% increase in Latino early voting in Florida now compared to this point in 2012, with 133,000 Hispanics having already cast their ballot in the state.  That figure came from the latest field report yesterday from the Hillary Clinton campaign.  In bellwether Pinellas County in Florida, which is 10% Latino, Democrats now maintain a voter registration advantage that’s increased since March.  That is precisely the ground work that will be required to take a state.  And it needs to be underscored this is exactly the type of campaign infrastructure that Trump simply dismissed.

These numbers are fitting into the playbook the Clinton team had worked for as Latinos comprised 17% of the state’s electorate in 2012, and has increased since.  But Florida is not the only state where large Latino populations have made an impression this election.

In Nevada’s Clark County, a major population center that include 75% of the state’s residents and is 31% Hispanic, 51,000 people voted on the first day of early voting, with 55% registered as Democrats, while 27% were Republicans.

In Arizona, a traditionally Republican state that in many ways represents the key to a Clinton landslide, the numbers look awful for Donald Trump.  With more than 300,000 votes already cast in Arizona, Democrats lead Republicans by 1,000 votes but trailed Republicans by 20,000 votes at the same point four years ago.

I have said throughout this election that in spite of all that made this cycle so different, and in many ways pathetic, the bottom line would remain the same.   The political rules of the road would still apply.  In this case the degree to which state-by-state organizing starting a year ago was essential for a win.  Big bombastic rallies are not the path to victory.

The other rule of the road is never treat a growing portion of the constituency with utter disdain.  Polls have shown Latinos largely repudiating Trump for his rhetoric and policies throughout the campaign season.

The day of reckoning for the Republican Party draws nigh.

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