What Polls Say About the Probability of Texas Turning Purple

Will an increasingly Hispanic Texas be an increasingly Democratic one?
Wed November 14, 2012 2:22 am
AP Photo | David J. Phillip

The fact that Barack Obama thoroughly clobbered Mitt Romney among Hispanic voters in last week’s presidential election—he won 71 percent of the Hispanic vote, compared to Romney’s 27 percent–naturally raises the question of whether an increasingly Hispanic United States will be an increasingly Democratic one. Some insights may be found in Texas, where at least 38 percent of the population is Hispanic. Ryan Lizza, at the New Yorker, is among those taking a look at Texas’s Hispanic voters. He spent some time before the election with Ted Cruz, the Cuban-American Tea-Party phenomenon who is now the state’s senator-elect, and who argues (as Republicans often do) that many Hispanic voters would be drawn to a Republican message about, say, the value of hard work. Lizza also stopped by the office of Steve Munisteri, chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, who allowed that whatever the message, Republicans need to figure this out quickly:

[Munisteri] told me that he had a slide that he wouldn’t show me, because he didn’t want Democrats to know about his calculations. He said that it depicted the percentage of the white vote that Republicans would have to attract if they continued to do as poorly as they have among Hispanics.

“By 2040, you’d have to get over a hundred per cent of

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