So says Politico, and it seems to be true. Certainly, Donald Trump made inroads among Hispanic voters in 2020 — both in Texas and elsewhere. And the GOP achieved further gains with this ethnic group in Texas elections held in 2021.
There are indications that Hispanic women are leading the charge. In Texas, according to Politico:
Hispanic women now serve as party chairs in the state’s four southernmost border counties, spanning a distance from Brownsville almost to Laredo — places where Trump made some of his biggest inroads with Latino voters.
A half-dozen of them are running for Congress across the state’s four House districts that border Mexico, including Monica De La Cruz, the GOP front-runner in one of Texas’ most competitive seats in the Rio Grande Valley.
One of these congressional candidates, Mayra Flores, says:
For so long, people here just never had Republicans knocking on their doors and calling them the way we did in 2020. The majority of us are women that did it then and are doing it now because we feel it’s our responsibility to keep the American Dream alive.
The part about the American Dream seems key to understanding why many Hispanics are warming to the GOP. That dream, widely derided as passé or a myth all along, still seems to resonate among Hispanics, many of whom migrated here hoping their children would enjoy it.
To the extent that Republicans are viewed as the party that believes in the American Dream and will fight to keep it alive with pro-growth policies and a commitment to rewarding hard work and entrepreneurship, that’s a plus in the eyes of many Hispanics.
There are other pluses, as well. Flores’ switch from Democrat to Republican was fueled by her views on religion, abortion, and border security.
In addition, according to Politico, many Texas Hispanics believe their husbands, family members, neighbors, and friends who are Border Patrol agents or are in law enforcement have been unfairly villainized by Democrats. Which, of course, they have been. In addition, there’s concern that Democrats are hostile to the oil and gas industry, which provides many good-paying jobs in Texas. And they worry that the left is forgetting family values and the value of work.
Some of these matters are pretty specific to Texas. They have less applicability to California, for example, and little to New York. Thus, if one looks at national polling numbers, the movement of Hispanics from Democrat to Republican appears real, but rather small.
In my view, the states in which the Hispanic vote is likely to be most consequential this year are Nevada and Arizona. In both states, the GOP has a chance to defeat vulnerable Senate Democrats, and its ability to do so might determine which party controls the Senate. In both states, Hispanics will have a lot to say about whether the GOP succeeds.
The Texas model isn’t a perfect fit for Nevada and Arizona. However, it seems more applicable to these states than do the California and New York models.