Anti-Immigrant Politics and Lessons for the GOP from California

According to polling data from the Field Poll, after winning the presidential election in 1980, California native Ronald Reagan raised his share of the Latino vote from 35 percent to 45 percent in 1984 while carrying 59 percent of the entire state. Republicans went on to win the Golden state again in 1988. Since then, three things have happened: first the Latino share of all voters in California started growing noticeably, and second: California Republicans embarked on an anti-immigrant agenda that ended up alienating Latino voters and driving them into the open arms of the Democratic Party, and third: Republicans have permanently written off 55 electoral college votes – or approximately 20% of the amount needed to reach 270. [cont.]

Matt A. Barreto & Ricardo Ramirez, Latino Decisions