According to this Buzzfeed article, Latino participation rates in this year’s Iowa caucuses increased more than 10-fold over 2012 rates and were triple the 2008 tally:
After dismal Latino turnout numbers in Iowa the past two presidential caucuses, early indications suggest that a $300,000 nonpartisan effort to get Hispanics to caucus succeeded in getting record turnout.
The initiative by the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) aimed to get 10,000 out of 50,000 registered Latino voters to caucus sites by repeatedly contacting them through phone calls and door knocks. NBC News exit poll shows that 4% of Democratic caucus-goers were Hispanic and 2% were on the Republican side. With both sides seeing huge turnout (171,000 for the Democrats and more than 180,000 for the GOP) that comes out to close to 10,500 Latinos.
Only 1,000 Latinos caucused in 2012. In 2008, when the race was competitive for both Democrats and Republicans, that number was 3,500.
LULAC, drawing from responses campaign field staff received from phone calls, door-knocking, and “Commit to Caucus” returns from mailers, believes the number is closer to 13,000.
I wonder how much of the turnout was driven by the LULAC initiative vs. Trump’s anti-Mexican scaremongering. It would also be interesting to know how the Latino Democratic caucus participants voted between Sanders and Clinton.
The article says exit polls showed 58% of minorities in last night’s Democratic caucuses went for Clinton, but I don’t think it was broken out by ethnic group, and Sanders won most of the large counties where minorities live.
Latinos preferred Clinton to Obama almost two to one in the 2008 primaries, and if they break decisively for Clinton again, that could be a huge factor in who ends up winning the nomination. Or not. Who knows?
PS: Once again, Richard was right about how dumb it is to extrapolate from the Iowa primaries, so please take this post with a grain of stupid (as usual).