New York Times
By Giovanni Russonello
February 27, 2016
Donald J. Trump bragged during Thursday night’s Republican debate that he had won almost half the Hispanic vote in the Nevada caucuses on Tuesday. “Nobody else was close,” he said. Looking forward, he said, “I will do really well with Hispanics.”
Mr. Trump’s history of making disparaging comments about Mexican immigrants is well known, and as he looks to clinch the Republican presidential nomination, he faces an uphill battle in building trust among the Hispanic electorate.
A Washington Post/Univision poll released on Thursday showed that among likely Hispanic Republican primary voters nationwide, Senator Marco Rubio was by far the leading choice, with 34 percent support. Mr. Trump had the backing of 22 percent.
And those who don’t support Mr. Trump are not likely to be swayed. Just 6 percent of Republican Hispanic voters named him as their second choice. With first and second choices combined, 53 percent said they could envision backing Mr. Rubio, and 38 percent said so for Senator Ted Cruz. For Mr. Trump, the number was 28 percent.
Looking beyond Republicans, to all Hispanic voters nationwide, Mr. Trump is deeply unpopular. Four in five have an unfavorable view of him, and only 16 percent view him positively.
Also of note: The Nevada entrance polls that Mr. Trump cites included interviews with just over 100 Hispanic caucusgoers, a very small sample; some analysts cautioned against reading too much into those results. Tuesday’s Hispanic voters represented only about 1 percent of the state’s Hispanic population.
By margins of more than three to one, Hispanic voters nationwide trust the Democratic Party more than the Republican Party to handle immigration, health care and same-sex marriage, according to the Post/Univision poll.
On the Democratic side, Hispanic voters favor Hillary Clinton by a two-to-one margin, although the same proportion of Hispanic voters views her and Senator Bernie Sanders favorably. Mrs. Clinton is seen favorably by 67 percent and unfavorably by 30 percent; Mr. Sanders is viewed well by 60 percent and looked on poorly by 23 percent.
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