President Barack Obama's 2008 victory was fueled in no small part by Hispanic voters. He pulled off a major 36-point victory over John McCain in the Latino vote, and new poll numbers suggest he's poised to pull off a major Latino landslide against his top Republican challengers. Assuming, of course, Latino voters actually show up.
Public Policy Polling, a Democratic-aligned polling firm, released the numbers. Here's how Obama does among Hispanic voters against the top Republican contenders for their party's nomination. The numbers for the entire electorate are indicated in parentheses.
- Obama vs. Michele Bachmann: 74-26 (50-42)
- Obama vs. Sarah Palin: 74-25 (53-40)
- Obama vs. Rick Perry: 72-26 (49-43)
- Obama vs. Mitt Romney: 66-29 (45-45)
It's no surprise, then, that many Republicans are hot on hope that the possibility of Marco Rubio joining a potential GOP ticket as the vice presidential candidate could help the party garner Latino votes.
However, the real challenge for the Obama campaign seems to be making sure Hispanics get out to vote.
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As Univision points out: "An impreMedia/Latino Decisions poll released last week showed that only 38 percent of Latinos are certain to vote for Obama again and that only 50 percent said they are "very enthusiastic" about voting in 2012."
President Obama's commencement speech this spring at Miami Dade College was widely seen as an effort to rev up Latino voters, but it'll take a lot more than that to seal the deal.