While Latino voters care about a variety of issues, including the economy, health care, and education, this group also is likely to say that immigration is a top political priority for the country, according to a recent poll.
Registered Latino voters were asked what issues they would most like both presidential candidates to address, and immigration reform was the second most popular response, following the economy, according to an NBC News/Telemundo/Wall Street Journal poll released on Tuesday.
While the poll did not break down the Latino subgroups, the trend likely reflects the fact that among the three largest Latino subgroups in the U.S. (Puerto Rican, Cuban, and Mexican), at least one is touched by immigration, either legal or unauthorized. Other Latino groups impacted by immigration have grown significantly in the country. A Pew Hispanic Center study examining 2010 census data, for instance, found that the Dominican population grew by 85 percent and Guatemalan by 180 percent since 2000.
Other polls have shown that Latinos, including those who are U.S.-born, care about some immigration policies because they believe they will impact them directly.
(Related National Journal story: Poll: Latinos Fear Arizona Law Spurs Racial Profiling)
The new survey interviewed 300 Latino registered voters between July 18 and 22. The margin of error was plus or minus 5.66 percentage points.
About 67 percent of those surveyed said they would vote for President Obama, while 23 percent said they would vote for Mitt Romney.
Frank Sharry, executive director of America’s Voice, an immigrant-rights group, said in a statement: “Mitt Romney, tethered so far to the right, trails far behind [Obama], and independents continue to show that they support pragmatic (immigration) solutions but aren’t particularly motivated one way or the other by the issue. Because of his restrictionist immigration policies and dismal Latino numbers, Romney has a lot of work to do if he wants to emerge victorious in November.”
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