What is Driving the Latino Vote?

On Sunday, the LA Times published an article about what is driving the Latino vote. It seems that Latinos are swinging towards Obama in recent polls, and the Times said that this swing is because the Latino vote is focused on economic issues.

Democratic and Republican activists working the precincts say the economy is the main issue for most voters. The war in Iraq is second on the minds of Latinos, many of whom have friends and family in Iraq.

But, as Paco Fabian at America's Voice noted (and the LA Times missed), immigration is one of the biggest issues driving the Latino vote this year.

...while the LA Times is right in stressing the importance of the economy to Latino voters, it misses a major piece of the puzzle when it comes to what is driving this new demographic.

In the wake of the 2006 and 2007 immigration marches, new citizens and their children are mobilizing once again. They are fed up with an immigration debate that has turned them into scapegoats for all our nation's ills while failing to fix our ailing immigration system.

In short, these swing voters are being mobilized to the polls by the immigration issue, even if the economy remains a top priority for them.

A new report on the Latino Evangelical Vote reports that, for this voter bloc, immigration is equally as important as abortion and even more important than the issue of gay marriage.

With more and more voters demanding a change to our broken immigration system, the new administration will be under intense pressure to directly address the issue upon taking office.