May 27, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Axios-Ipsos poll: Virus, discrimination top Hispanic concerns

An Axios-Ipsos poll on race relations one year after George Floyd's murder shows that COVID-19, gun violence and racial discrimination are the top concerns among Hispanics in the U.S.

Why it matters: The poll suggested that after a year of the pandemic and social justice demonstrations, Hispanics are less optimistic than white Americans but less pessimistic than their Black neighbors.

By the numbers: Four out of 10 Hispanic respondents ranked the novel coronavirus as the topic they found most worrisome. Only 23% of whites felt the same.

  • Around 32% of Hispanics said they were more worried about crime or gun violence compared to 28% of white and 43% of Black Americans.
  • Nearly three out of 10 Hispanics polled ranked racial injustice and discrimination as their top concern compared to 59% of Black Americans. Barely 17% of their white neighbors felt the same.
  • About 52% of Hispanics believe that race relations have slightly or significantly worsened since the death of Floyd. Around 62% of Black Americans felt the same compared to 48% of whites.

The intrigue: Just 21% of Hispanic respondents listed immigration as their top concern — tied with climate change for the fifth spot.

  • The poll mirrors other surveys that found Latinos consistently placing immigration fourth or fifth behind issues like the economy, education, and health care, despite consistent national media coverage of Hispanics centered on immigration.
  • Recent preliminary findings by research firm Equis that were reviewed by Axios showed that worries around the virus allowed President Trump to make inroads with low-information Latino voters in the 2020 election.
  • Republicans targeted Latino voters on YouTube and social media by talking about reopening the economy while Democrats focused on immigration and didn't engage as much.

What they're saying: "Democrats have to stop treating Latino voters like Black voters. They are not the same," Mike Madrid, a California Republican strategist and Latino voting trends expert, told Axios.

  • "Latino voters don't want to just talk about immigration. They are Americans concerned about their positions in the U.S. "

Be smart: The high ranking of crime and gun violence could signal more opportunity for GOP inroads with Latinos amid rising crime rates.

The poll also examined racial and ethnic disparities around policing and the criminal justice system, which Axios' David Nather unpacked as part of our Hard Truths series.

Watch: Axios' race and justice reporter Russell Contreras and managing editor for politics Margaret Talev discuss the poll's findings on "Axios on HBO" on HBO and HBO Max.

Methodology: This Axios/Ipsos Poll was conducted April 28-May 4 by Ipsos' KnowledgePanel®. This poll is based on a nationally representative probability sample of 1,875 general population adults age 18 or older.

  • The margin of sampling error is ±2.8 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, for results based on the entire sample of adults.
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