Posted On October 3, 2022

Latinos’ preference for a Democratic-controlled Congress over GOP control in the midterms has declined by half over the last decade, per the results of a new NBC News & Telemundo survey released on Monday.

The survey showed that 54% of Latinos prefer a Democratic-controlled Congress versus 33% for Republicans. The 21% difference in favor of Democrats is the lowest on record and is down from a 42% margin in favor of Democrats recorded in the survey’s 2012 edition, where Democrats were preferred by 65% of Latinos to Republicans’ 23%.

It also showed that Latinos largely disapproved of the Biden administration’s handling of key policy portfolios that have become the focus of this year’s midterm campaign. Over 50% of Latinos disapproved of Biden’s handling of “border security and immigration,” which has become a point of controversy as migrant crossings break records, while 54% and 60% disapproved of his handling of the economy and the “cost of living,” respectively.

“Margins matter,” said Aileen Cardona-Arroyo, a polling expert from Hart Research Associates, who conducted the survey on behalf of NBC & Telemundo. Bill McInturff, who also conducted the survey, added that “Being down by 20 points is a lot better [for Republicans] than being down by 40 points,” in comments to NBC News.

Among the issues that most motivated them to vote, respondents ranked the “cost of living,” “threats to democracy,” “jobs and the economy,” and “immigration and border security” as their top four issues. About 24% also said that a candidate’s views on abortion could swing their vote, regardless of their position on other issues.

Since the overturning of Roe v. Wade by the Supreme Court, Democratic candidates have made “abortion rights” a central argument to voters in races across the country. Per the survey, 60% of Latinos said that abortion should be legal in, at least, most circumstances, while 55% disapproved of the Supreme Court’s decision.

Asked where they get their news about politics from, a substantial plurality of 41% reported “social media” as their primary source of information, with Facebook, Twitter and YouTube being the top three sources. Nearly 75% said that the language of choice for such media was just English, compared to just 29% who reported either just Spanish or a mix of both.

The poll surveyed 1,000 registered voters across the country who identified as Hispanic and/or Latino and had a margin of error of 3.1%.

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