Colorado’s Latino voters offer a glimpse of a shifting national landscape
Sweeping demographic shifts in the past decade, particularly an influx of Latinos, have helped turn it from a reliable Republican red state into a purple state where Democrats have begun to thrive.
It was not that long ago that Republicans won Colorado in three successive presidential elections, capped off by George W. Bush’s victories in 2000 and 2004. But since then the GOP has struggled to find success. During that time, the Latino population here has exploded and more Latinos than ever are voting, usually for Democrats. This year, they will make up 14 percent of all eligible voters in the state, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.
To put things into perspective, the state is already more than 20 percent Latino. By comparison, the Latino share of the U.S. population will reach 19.4 by 2020 and 21.2 by 2025, according to Census projections. That means it’s becoming impossible for politicians to have success in Colorado at the statewide level without the support of the Latino community. And at this rate, pols may increasingly find themselves in the same position across the country.
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