Kristian Hernandez, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, October 3, 2020
Marco Antonio Rivera, 50, of Fort Worth, said he’s going to vote for the first time on Nov. 3. He and his wife immigrated to the United States 25 years ago from Delicias, Chihuahua, Mexico, and became citizens more than a decade ago, but they never cared about who was in the White House until now.
“Its horrible what these politicians say about immigrants and we need to make sure they know that we’re fed up,” Rivera said in Spanish on Friday outside La Gran Plaza in south Fort Worth.
“I don’t know why every time the president or any other politician wants to talk bad about immigrants they pick on Mexicans. We’re not the only ones here, there’s millions of us from all around the world.”
Immigrants will make up 9.3% of the electorate in November, according to the New American Economy, a bipartisan research organization advocating for immigration policies that help the U.S. economy. The organization took census data from the American Community Survey and compared eligible voters in 2010 and 2018.
The study found voters in this year’s election will be the most diverse and well-educated in U.S history.
Nationwide, non-Hispanic whites without a college degree represented 51% of voters in 2010, but had fallen to 44.6% by 2018, according to the study.
Hispanics make up 12.7% of voters, an increase of nearly 3% since 2010, making them the largest minority group in the U.S. electorate. Blacks make up 12.5% of the electorate.
Richard Pineda, a political analyst and chairman of communications at the University of Texas at El Paso, said the changing demographics mean institutions and political parties must update how they engage voters.
“They’re going to have to consider culturally and linguistically sensitive ways to reach new populations of folks that could become voters,” Pineda said. “So despite public posturing, the idea of being culturally sensitive in government policy will still have to be significant.”
Pineda said the million-dollar question is if these populations will show an inclination to vote, volunteer, and make campaign contributions.
Latinos make up about 30% of the electorate in Texas, but of those 5.6 million voters, only 28% voted the 2016 presidential election, compared to 48% of whites.