LOS ANGELES, California.— Despite the dire situation of the economy and the lack of immigration solutions, President Barack Obama’s approval rating among Latino voters increased again to 70% after decreasing in mid-2010. But that support does not translate into automatic votes for 2012.
The second part of a poll conducted by impreMedia and Latino Decisions (LD) also reveals that, although Latino voters will not automatically vote for Obama—only 43% are sure they will vote for him next year—doubts about the president and the Democrats are not turning into support for the Republicans.
This is the first of six polls to be conducted by impreMedia and Latino Decisions this year about the most important issues for the Latino community. The second one, planned for April, will focus on healthcare.
The president’s approval rating is strong, although there are degrees of support: 32% of those polled said they categorically support Obama, while 38% approves the president’s performance "up to a certain point." In 2010, Obama’s rating among Latino voters decreased to 57% according to a June Gallup poll, and it was at 60% in a September LD poll.
Part of the decrease in the president’s approval rating occurred within the context of the continuing economic anxiety of Latinos and a failure to meet promises on immigration, "but the image began to improve when there was a new attempt to approve the DREAM Act, which ended up failing," said Matt Barreto, a political science professor at the University of Washington and pollster for Latino Decisions.
Back then, the White House made an effort to increase communication with Latinos. Although the bill failed, Latinos still give Obama the benefit of the doubt regarding the economy and immigration.