POLL: Obama Opens Up Big Lead Among Latinos In Key States
President Barack Obama's controversial decision last week not to enforce illegal immigration laws that apply to 800,000 illegal aliens appears to have boosted his already sizable lead among Latino voters in key battleground states, according to a new poll by Latino Decisions and America's Voice.
Mr. Obama leads Republican challenger Mitt Romney by an average of 63 percent to 27 percent among Latino voters in the swing-states of Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and Virginia.
Political analysts believe Mr. Romney will need need to win roughly 40 percent of Latino voters nationally to win the White House in November. In 2004, President George W. Bush made significant inroads when he won 44 percent of the Latino voting bloc, now the second largest racial group in America.
Both Obama and Romney spoke last week at the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials conference. Mr. Obama used his decision to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants to zing Mr. Romney:
"I refused to keep looking young people in the eye, deserving young people in the eye, and tell them tough luck," he said, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd that gave Romney a cool reception the day before.
"Your speaker from yesterday has a different view. In a speech he said that when he makes a promise to you, he'll keep it. Well he has promised to veto the DREAM Act, and we should take him at his word," the Democratic president said.
"I'm just sayin'," he added, to laughter.In response to the president's remarks, Romney spokesperson Amanda Henneberg said, "No election-year speech can cover up the president's job-killing policies that have led to 11 percent Hispanic unemployment and millions of Hispanics living in poverty."
America's Voice, a pro-immigration reform group, and Latino Decisions say that their poll of 2,000 Latino voters has a margin of error of 2.2 percentage points overall and 4.9 percent for data on each state.