Trump started his campaign by denigrating Mexicans and remains fairly unpopular there. On the other hand, some countries are reliably pro-American and pro-Conservative. Many Latin American countries are religious - especially Catholic. Many Americans of Latino background emigrated legally years ago and don’t want to be lumped in with more recent immigrants. And many different countries and cultures are involved.
Still, this does not explain Trump’s popularity with Latinos, for example in Florida, to me in an adequate way. Can you?
Cubans in particular, which are quite numerous in Florida for geographical reasons, tend to be Republican, as they are mostly people who fled from communist Cuba. My sense is they have a disdain for other Hispanics, perhaps because more of them are pure blooded Spanish compared to the mostly mestizo Mexicans and other Latin Americans, though I don’t know how true that is.
New Mexico is chock-full of arrogantly proud people who moved into the area when it, and the territory to the south later called Mexico, were both territorial possessions of the nation of Spain. Anglos, and their border separating the land somewhere in the vicinity of El Paso del Norte into two nations, came a lot later.
Both they and the newer immigrants who came up north when the territory was owned by a newer nation called Mexico, and the yet-newer ones who came up north when that land was part of an English-speaking nation called the United States — legally and illegally — tend to vote Democratic.
The tendency of the old established “we were here before the Treaty of Cordobá” families to look down on the newbies from so-called “Mexico” doesn’t seem to lead them to see the Republicans as saviors or comrades in principle.
I think it has a shitload more to do with the fond hopes of the Batista-era refugees and (to a lesser extent) their descendants that the US would eventually take Cuba back from Castro and his regime. They may not always have hated the Democrats and loved the Republicans, but for a long time it’s been the Republicans who were beating the drums of “we hate communism” and opposing normalization of relations with Cuba, while the Democrats were not doing so.
Latino voters are not a monolithic cohort. They come from dozens of countries, each with their own history, culture, and preferences. There is no reason to think they should all have the same opinions and political leanings.
I have a friend who is a Puerto Rican living in Miami. He HATES Cubans with a passion bordering on illogical. I have no idea how he votes, but I’m quite certain he doesn’t feel beholden to follow some theoretical Latin Orthodoxy.
Some Hispanic voters who immigrated legally to the U.S. resent those who came in illegally, seeing them as cutting in line or shortcutting their way in. In this regard, they have more in common with white Trump voters who oppose illegal immigration than with their fellow amnesty-supporting Hispanics.
Ninja’d by Velocity. When you spend all that time, money, and aggravation jumping through all the hoops to become a legal US resident and then citizen, it can be annoying to see others slip through while avoiding all that, so some support “closing the door behind them.”
That’s part if it, plus the cultural conservatism of many (“family values” and all that - never mind Republican hypocrisies), and random sorting as assimilation progresses from one generation to the next.
I’m not as concerned with Trump’s ‘popularity’ with Trump as much as I am the fact that Biden has not done a particularly good job in terms of outreach to Latinos. How much that harms him in November remains to be seen.
Same reason Trump is popular with some Black people, gay people, atheists, etc. Some people are naturally conservative, and some of those naturally conservative people happen to be Latino, Black, gay, atheist, etc.
There is also the fear that “black gains” could mean they get cast aside, even as they are set to become the #1 minority by number. As a whole, there is not a lot of friendship or unity between the two largest minorites.
Florida has Cubans and Venezuelans (generally pro-Republican) and Puerto Ricans (generally pro-Democrat).
Texas has Texicans (Mexicans who were in Texas before white Americans arrived there), immigrants, the descendants of immigrants, and so forth. It’s a conservative state, and if you go to school there you will likely be a conservative, regardless of ethnic origin.
Some people are culturally conservative. In Canada, we frequently believe that immigrants are natural Liberal voters, but that’s not really true. Many countries are very conservative. (Our Conservatives realized this in 2011, but forgot this in the following two elections.)
I agree about the presumption that immigrants are naturally liberal being mistaken as well. In a world without 9/11 we might be talking about evangelical Christians + Muslims being a large part of the Republican base, similar to how Catholics now get lumped in (and lump themselves in) with more conservative protestants like Baptists and Methodists.
This. A lot of folks don’t realize that the illegal immigrants really grate on many who immigrated legally to this country. There are a variety of reasons for this, but some small percentage of hispanics like the way Trump took this issue on, including several in my own extended family, sadly to say. Another thing that resonates with them is the whole America First(tm…arr) schtick, especially with respect to NAFTA and the perception that many jobs were outsources back to Mexico. Personally, I think this is a stupid and ignorance based reaction, but it’s a real one for those who drink the kool aid and it engenders some small percentage of hispanics to support Trump.
I think I acknowledged the diversity of Latinos (why does every country have a different word for straw?), and the issues of immigration and religion. Certainly, a traditional view of families, respect for institutions and possibly even a tolerance or love of strongmen (or suspicion of democracy) are likely factors. Less discussed are the importance of neighbourhood safety, jobs, fitting in and the possible Latino views on relations between different races or countries.
I always thought that part of the popularity of Trump was his simplistic focus - of interest to “single issue” voters more interested in abortion, guns, illegal immigrants, entertainment, nonconformity, sh*t disturbing, return to an idealized past, future Conservative laws, tax cuts, jingoism or less regulation of business. Obviously, there can be a conservative lean to farmers, the military (or similar orgs), religious immigrants and the anti-Castro’s. But Trump is not a generic candidate. He has said and done many things offensive to both Latinos and the genuinely religious - who may or may not choose to overlook these things.
What steps Biden has taken is a different issue. He seems religious, and seems to have made relatively little outreach (which, as a Canadian, I may be underestimating due to underexposure). You even speak Spanglish, Hermano? (Which would be an asset in countries other than the US?)
Tactically, don’t forget that Elian Gonzalez occurred during the last days of the Clinton administration, a fact which Republicans turned to with glee. Clinton’s share of the south Florida latino vote was, IIRC, ~36% in 1996… and Gore got 18% 4 years later.
It has been mentioned: Many of us self-described Latinos are not even remotely “immigrant”. My ancestors did not cross the border, the border crossed them. Attaching us to immigration/dreamers etc. with a welded chain as THE single issue about us is uncomfortable even for those of us who support the inclusive side.
Meanwhile, yes, our political positions are widely divergent. Heck, the leaders of the Puerto Rico Republican Party, for 120 years the biggest advocate for PR Statehood, and who regularly get elected to high office in the Island, have been since the 1990s tearing their hair out at how the stateside Republicans have decided that nonetheless Puerto Rico statehood is some sort of Democrat Socialist plot.
But, anyway, you say: sure, but how about the insults? Well, like a lot of Trump’s working-class supporters, many Latinos are used to having to work around rude assholes with power. They will take the position that “well, what white guy doesn’t think of us as spics?” and proceed to vote about the conservative issues.
Perhaps for a number of members of the former elite families of Cuba who left in 1959-65, but the animosity often runs in the opposite direction: the other Latinos see the Cubans in general as having been welcomed with open arms and even encouraged to “get their feet on US soil” by whatever means they could as “refugees for freedom” – even the lower-class and often troubled Marielitos. Meanwhile those fleeing extreme poverty , and in the 70s and 80s dictatorships and civil wars, in other places, were told “no you are not refugees, you are just common migrants, wait your turn” just because their country failed to tick the “communist” box. This created resentment that disregards if it was through work and hustle that the Cubans survived and prospered leapfrogging previously established communities.