Voters in Camdem County
Representational image Journeys

Different polls and electoral results have shown that many Latino voters have been shifting to the Republican party throughout the past years, no longer voting overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates. In fact, two recent studies published this year even showed former president Donald Trump with a lead over current head of State Joe Biden as the electoral year begins.

However, despite having the momentum, the Republican National Committee (RNC) has closed several Hispanic Community Centers it had touted as key to winning voters from this demographic, The Messenger reported.

These centers, praised effusively by elected officials when cutting the ribbon, said to include activities such as thanksgiving potlucks, toy drives and religious services, combining civil life and candidate recruitment activities.

Daniel Garza, the executive director of the LIBRE Initiative, told The Messenger that the RNC seemed to have gone "big" but "didn't get the response from the community they intended." "That's OK, they tried, we appreciate that. But you have to have people on the inside who can advise you — these are long-term things that need to be backed by resources," he added.

After opening 20 such locations during the 2022 election cycle, only five of them remain open, two of them having opened in 2023, the RNC told the outlet. However, it added that it is planning on reopening centers in four locations in different swing states.

"Democrats have taken the Hispanic community for granted for far too long, no amount of money spent will change the fact that Biden is a disaster for our community, from the economy, to the border and rising crime," RNC Hispanic Communications Director Jaime Florez told The Messenger.

The Biden campaign, on its end, has been spending on targeted efforts to gain support from the Latino community. One example of this was the hiring of Conexión, a communications and content production firm, to push dedicated messaging.

Conexión has already produced some ads for the Biden campaign as is the case of "Nosotros | Biden-Harris 2024." Biden has also compared Trump with authoritarian Venezuelan leaders Hugo Chávez and Nicolás Maduro in another ad.

"We start before the Sun, stop after it's gone down. We build the country. But to some we are invisible. Not to Joe Biden. He sees us, he invests in us, our community, businesses. Republicans don´t, and like dictators want to take things away: health insurance, rights, freedoms and safety," says the 30-second ad, which shows pictures of Trump, Maduro and Chavez in succession. "The difference is clear. Build with Biden," finishes the ad.

The latest data shows Biden faces a steep hill in regaining Latino support. A recent study by Collage Group showed that 30% of the demographic identified themselves as conservative, the second largest group only behind Whites.

Moreover, a recent USA TODAY/Suffolk University from January showed Joe Biden trailing Donald Trump 39-34% with the Latino demographic. For perspective, the same study indicated that in 2020 Biden received 65% of the support compared to Trump's 32%.

The shift in political views could hold important implications for the upcoming elections, especially considering that Hispanics are the largest multicultural group in the U.S. with over 63 million people and are projected to represent 14.7% of eligible voters in 2024, according to a recent poll from the Pew Research Center.

© 2024 Latin Times. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.