Thirty seven percent of the Latino electorate in Florida is still undecided about whom they will vote for in this November’s governor’s race, says a new poll released today by NCLR and the NCLR Action Fund (NCLRAF). Latino Decisions conducted the survey between Sept. 26-Oct. 3, 2014.
According to the poll, almost 40 percent of registered Latino voters in Florida say they plan to vote for former governor, Charlie Crist (D), while 23 percent they would vote for the incumbent, Gov. Rick Scott (R).
The Latino vote is a crucial one in Florida where it comprises 18 percent of the state’s entire electorate. Latinos in the Sunshine State are also energized to vote this year, according to the poll’s findings. In fact, 73 percent of those polled said they were certain they would make it to the voting booth next month.
“While undecided in the state’s top ticket contest, Latino voters are certainly energized to turn out and vote this November,” said Loren McArthur, Deputy Director of Civic Engagement for NCLR. “This provides a great opportunity for campaigns to reach out to Latinos and engage with them on the issues they feel are most critical to the community—which according to respondents of the poll were the economy, immigration and health care.”
Indeed, as the poll shows, there is much at stake for the Latino community and they are ready to make their voice heard. Overall, the economy, health care, and immigration are the top priorities for Latino voters.
Top lines from today’s poll:
- This was the top priority for respondents; 24 percent said it was the most important factor in deciding whom to vote for
- A whopping 64 percent of Latino voters in Florida support increasing the minimum wage
- Ninety-four percent support equal pay for women
- Almost 80 percent of Latino voters say the state should accept federal funding to expand Medicaid
- Sixty-six percent said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who supports expanding the popular health insurance program
- Sixty-nine percent of those polled think the governor should use his executive authority to expand Medicaid if Tallahassee fails to act on its own, including 54 percent of Republican Latinos
- Eighty percent say the inaction on immigration reform makes it more important to vote this year
- Twenty-two percent of Latino voters said immigration was the most important issue this election
“Latino voters’ policy priorities are clear, and it is also evident from what we’ve seen in the poll that Latinos continue to be issue-based voters” said Matthew McClellan, Executive Director of NCLRAF. “It’s up to both candidates to now clarify exactly where they stand on critical issues to Florida’s Hispanic community, like Medicaid expansion and immigration reform—it could make all the difference in some of the state’s most contested races.”