Study: Hispanics view racism at center of immigration debate
By Ben Smith
The Politico (Washington, DC), July 14, 2010
A 30 percent plurality of Hispanics living in the U.S. view racism at the heart of the immigration reform debate, according to polling data released Wednesday by Latino advocacy groups.
The LatinoMetrics study, co-sponsored by The Hispanic Federation and League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and conducted by Hispanic marketing firms Garcia Research and Santiago ROI in the wake of Arizona's passage of a new immigration law, also found that at least one in four of the 84% of Latino voters who support national immigration reform would not go to the polls if legislation has not passed come November.
'This new poll demonstrates a tremendous shift in the importance that immigration has become for a wide cross section of the Latino population of the United States,' LULAC National Executive Director Brent Wilkes said. 'Latinos have taken offense to the way immigrants have been demonized by politicians and political interest groups and are prepared to vote accordingly.'
According to the study, immigration reform has also spiked as a point of key personal concern among Latinos since December of last year, and is now ranked as the most important issue by 24%, one point behind the economy.
LULAC this week joined the spate of organizations to file suit against the Arizona law.
EDITORS NOTE: The poll results are available online at: http://www.hispanicfederation.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=126:latinosurvey2010&catid=75:newinitiatives&Itemid=191