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Report: 165,000 Latinos to vote this year, 5.8% more than 2018

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More than 165,000 Latinos will cast ballots this November, according to the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. 

This year’s projection marks a 5.8% increase from 2018’s historic numbers, and a 70% increase from 2014. 

NALEO’s findings show the Latino voter is significantly younger than other groups. Eighteen to 34-year-olds comprise nearly half of all Latinos registered to vote compared with only 20% of non-Latinos in the same age group. 

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Dorian Caal, the organization's director of civic engagement research, said candidates need to invest in engaging a population that is “paying attention” and wants to hear about issues that are important, from their perspective. 

Caal said in 2020, COVID-19 was a big concern as many Latinos were deemed essential workers and disproportionately affected. 

He said the Latino community is concerned about many of the same issues like the environment and the economy, but from its perspective.  

“Because it is an immigrant population there are other intersecting issues that really do play a role in how things might be viewed," he said. "Like the economy, certainly when we view it from that point, a mixed status household, things that might disrupt that household might change the way that community or specific household could view a particular issue.” 

Yvette Fernandez is KNPR’s daily news reporter and announcer. She joined the station September 2021.