Posted on March 26, 2024

Biden Steps Up Efforts to Reach Voters of Color

Julia Mueller, The Hill, March 24, 2024

President Biden’s campaign is stepping up efforts to reach voters of color ahead of a November showdown with former President Trump and amid signs that some Black and Latino voters are turning away from the Democratic Party.

President Biden’s campaign last week launched ads speaking directly to Black voters in battleground states, arguing another Trump term would be a “disaster” for the demographic. A day later, the campaign announced a program to engage Latino voters — and Biden said during a campaign stop in Arizona that they’re “the reason why, in large part, I beat Donald Trump.”

Biden’s trips to Michigan, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada in recent weeks shows a ramped-up understanding that “this is going to be won in swing states, and in places with young voters of color,” said Democratic strategist Michael Starr Hopkins.

“The only way for Democrats to win is for Black voters to show up at the polls,” Hopkins said.

In 2020, Black voters voted overwhelmingly for Biden over Trump, casting 92 percent of ballots for him, according to a Pew Research analysis of the previous cycle. Biden earned 59 percent of the Hispanic vote to Trump’s 38 percent.

But as the race heads toward a 2024 rematch — and as both campaigns make a play for minority voters — there are signs that a growing share of voters of color are frustrated with the Democratic Party to which they’ve long been loyal.


Gallup polling released last month showed Democrats’ lead in Black American’s party preferences has fallen 20 points in the past three years, and their lead among Hispanic adults is at its lowest point since 2011.

CBS News poll from late February found Biden’s support from Black voters down from 87 percent in 2020 to 76 percent this year. A USA Today/Suffolk University poll in January found Biden with just 63 percent support among Black voters.


Many Black voters are “more conservative than I think people expect and understand,” said Hopkins, who contended there’s some “alignment” on policy views, even despite Trump’s “insulting” rhetoric.


Black voters “are expressing an expectation of the Democratic Party that the party itself might not be meeting right now, but it does not mean that they’re changing their voting behavior,” Shropshire said.

With Latino voters, polls also show Trump making inroads despite his anti-immigration positions.

New York Times/Siena College poll released earlier this month found Trump gaining support among Latino voters, whom Pew Research projects will make up around 15 percent of eligible voters in November. Black Americans are set to make up 14 percent of eligible voters. The CBS News poll found Biden’s support from Hispanic voters down from 65 percent in 2020 to 53 percent this year.

“I think what’s happening with Latinos and Black voters this time is somewhat similar in that folks are feeling increasingly squeezed. If Black and Latino Americans are feeling like, ‘I am struggling,’ … then they remember those stimulus checks that Trump sent out, or they remember, ‘maybe things used to be better under Trump.’ And memory has faded,” said Melissa Michelson, a professor of political science with a focus on Latino politics at California’s Menlo College.

Trump has controversially said immigrants are “poisoning the blood of our country” and commented at a rally last week that some undocumented immigrants are “not people.”

But many Latinos identify more strongly as “white, or something else, or just as Americans,” Michelson said, and may not connect the former president’s rhetoric to themselves.


“I need you badly,” Biden told Latino voters this week in Phoenix, where he kicked off Latinos con Biden, a series of events to engage, train and mobilize Latino supporters.