Friday, September 20, 2019

Julián Castro’s 2020 prospects rise when Latinos are included in polls

For Julián Castro, the more Latinos surveyed in polls of the 2020 Democratic presidential field, the better.

A poll released this week of national Latino voters had Castro, a former U.S. housing secretary and mayor of San Antonio, in fourth, with 45 percent. The poll was conducted by Latino Decisions for the National Association of Latino Elected Officials Educational Fund, a bipartisan group.

That was much better than Castro, 44, the only Latino in the 2020 race, has fared in other polls on the Democratic primary race that polled fewer Latinos. Leading the poll was former Vice President Joe Biden (59 percent), followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders, independent from Vermont (58 percent) and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke (48 percent).

Latino Decisions surveyed 606 Latino registered voters nationwide from April 9-15. While it is early and voters are still getting to know candidates, how the candidates fare in national polls is critical as they vie for spots in Democratic party debates, the first of which will be held in June and hosted by NBC News, MSNBC and Telemundo.

The number of potential Latino voters is growing as some 1 million young Latinos turn 18 every year and as the political climate has helped mobilize them. In addition, Latino voters will have an early impact on the 2020 primary.

Iowa and New Hampshire will hold the first caucus and primary, followed by Nevada, a state with heavy Latino population, on Feb. 22. California and Texas — the two states with the highest number of registered Latino voters in the country — are on March 3, Super Tuesday. Maya Rupert, Castro’s campaign manager, said Castro’s showing in the Latino Decisions poll “is exactly the momentum we’re describing we’re seeing.”

NBC NEWS