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Campaign Spotlight on Florida Campaign Spotlight on Florida

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Campaign Spotlight on Florida

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Action on the floor of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.(Ralf-Finn Hestoft)

The Sunshine State is a battleground for electoral votes, but it is also a battleground for Latinos, the largest and fasting-growing minority demographic in the country. But it isn't safe to assume that Latinos act as a homogeneous group. How this group of voters will vote in the future will help determine the direction of the country.

Below, find National Journal dispatches from the Sunshine State.

 

Hispanics: The Story of the Campaign

Hispanics in Florida, and across the country, are becoming a key voting bloc. Both President Obama and Mitt Romney have noticed.

Beth Reinhard reports:

Demographic trends are moving in Obama’s favor. Four million more Hispanics are eligible to vote in 2012 than were in 2008, according to the Pew Hispanic Center. In a recent interview with The Des Moines Register, the president called immigration reform a top priority and said, “A big reason I will win a second term is because the Republican nominee and Republican Party have so alienated the fastest-growing demographic group in the country, the Latino community.”

 

The Florida Voters Who Can't Forgive Obama

The story of the last two elections is the story of America falling in and out of love with Barack Obama. Nowhere was that more true than Florida.

The Atlantic's Molly Ball reports:

 

Obama spent the last two years trying to get back the voters who carried him to victory here in 2008, then turned against him in 2010. It is the central argument of his reelection campaign: Sure, we've had our differences, and things are not perfect, but it's OK to come back.

The central question of 2012 is whether people are buying it -- whether, having turned their backs on him once, voters are ready to give Obama another chance.

The Cornerstone

Florida’s Hillsborough County, the site of this summer’s GOP convention, voted for George W. Bush twice and then flipped to Obama. Winning here in 2012 might hold the key to the entire election.

Beth Reinhard reports:

Look around this county of 1.2 million and you’ll find a mash-up of past and future: a solidly Democratic city bracketed by Republican-leaning suburbs; strawberry fields, ranch-style homes, and gentrified urban neighborhoods; Puerto Ricans, Cuban-Americans, African-Americans, Midwestern retirees, college kids, active military, and young families; the brick and wrought iron of historic Ybor City, and the stucco and terra-cotta of the Sun City Center senior community.

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