Mark Penn on Hillary and Latinos

It's always debatable how much official endorsements actually matter in elections, let alone endorsements that happen months before most voters are fully engaged in a contest.

But Hillary Clinton's campaign is presenting the recent endorsement of Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to make a broader case for her strength amongst Latino voters.

In an e-mail that just went out to supporters, Clinton's top pollster, Mark Penn, argues that the number of Latino voters is increasing nationwide to about 7 percent of the electorate, and that Clinton enjoys about 60 percent of their support.

The release gives a state-by-state breakdown of where Clinton has the most strength with Latino voters, and, as Clinton often does on the campaign trail, mentions campaign manager Patti Solis-Doyle as evidence of her commitment to them.

Here's the email:

 

TO: Interested Parties

FROM: Mark Penn and Sergio Bendixen

DATE: May 30, 2007

RE: Hillary Clinton's support among Latino voters

 

 

Today's key endorsement from Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is proof that the Clinton Campaign's focus and strategy to win the Latino vote continues to grow stronger. Mayor Villaraigosa is one of America's great mayors and a dynamic national leader, who will play a key role in the campaign, advising on a range of policy issues that he focuses on every day as the mayor of America's second-largest city.

 

Hillary Clinton has a significant lead with Latino voters across the board and they will play a pivotal role in Nevada, and in many key Feb 5th states - they are critical in California, Texas, Florida, New York and New Jersey – and contribute to her lead in those states and other smaller states as well. They have been growing in Democratic support, and in the general election, they have steadily grown in importance. Latino voters have great respect for Senator Clinton. They have risen from 2% of the electorate in 1992 to what is likely to be about 7% in 2008. In the 2004 presidential election, an estimated 82% turned out to vote. Along with women, Hispanics are one of her most supportive and most important support groups. While George Bush captured about 40% of the Latino vote, Hillary is poised to reclaim the Latino vote that Democrats lost in 2004.

 

1. Hillary Clinton is the overwhelming favorite among Latino voters.

 

In the Latino Policy Coalition poll, 60% of Hispanic voters supported Hillary Clinton, compared with 12% or less for her opponents.

 

Latino Policy Coalition – Lake Research Partners March 13 and 21, 2007; Among Hispanics

Democratic Primary Vote

Favorability

HRC

60

68

Obama

12

48

Richardson

9

38

Edwards

7

44

 

2. In key states with large Hispanic populations, Hillary Clinton has an overwhelming lead.

 

California (441 delegates) – Feb 5 Primary

2004 D primary electorate: 16% Latino

2004 general electorate: 21% Latino

2006 general electorate: 19% Latino

In California, Clinton has a 13 point lead overall, widening to 41 points among Hispanics.

 

Field Poll March 20-31

Among all D primary voters

Among Hispanics

HRC

41

59

Obama

28

18

Edwards

13

11

 

New York (280 delegates) – Feb 5 Primary

2004 D primary electorate: 11% Latino

2004 general electorate: 9% Latino

2006 general electorate: 7% Latino

 

In New York, Clinton has a 22 point lead overall, widening to 47 points among Hispanics.

 

Siena Poll April 16-20

Among all D primary voters

Among Hispanics

HRC

39

63

Obama

17

16

Edwards

11

0

Richardson

4

0

 

Texas (228 delegates) – Potential Feb 5 Primary

2004 D primary electorate: 24% Latino

2004 general electorate: 20% Latino

2006 general electorate: 15% Latino

 

In Texas, Clinton leads by 15 points *

 

Burnt Orange Report March 22

Among all D primary voters

HRC

35

Edwards

20

Obama

15

Richardson

8

 

Florida (210 delegates) – Jan 29 Primary

2004 D primary electorate: 9% Latino

2004 general electorate: 15% Latino

2006 general electorate: 11% Latino

 

In Florida, Clinton leads by 21 points*

 

Quinnipiac April 17-24

Among all D primary voters

HRC

36

Gore

15

Obama

13

Edwards

11

Richardson

2

 

New Jersey (127 delegates) – Feb 5 Primary

2006 general electorate: 9% Latino

2004 general electorate: 10% Latino

 

In New Jersey, Clinton leads by 22 points*

 

Quinnipiac April 10-16

Among all D primary voters

HRC

38

Obama

16

Gore

12

Edwards

9

Richardson

2

 

Colorado (71 delegates) – Potential Feb 5 Caucus

2004 general electorate: 8% Latino

 

In Colorado, Clinton leads by 11 points*

 

ARG March 29-April 2

Among all D caucus-goers

HRC

34

Obama

23

Gore

13

Edwards

8

Richardson

1

Arizona (67 delegates) – Potential Feb 5 Primary

2004 D primary electorate: 17% Latino

2004 general electorate: 12% Latino

2006 general electorate: 12% Latino

 

In Arizona, Clinton leads by 7 points*

 

Rocky Mountain Poll March 10-21

Among all D caucus-goers

HRC

27

Obama

20

Gore

10

Edwards

9

Richardson

7

 

New Mexico (38 delegates) – Feb 5 Caucus

2004 general electorate: 32% Latino

2006 general electorate: 31% Latino

 

In New Mexico, Clinton is second only to Governor Bill Richardson*

 

 

ARG Jan 11-13

Among all D caucus-goers

Richardson

28

HRC

22

Obama

17

Edwards

12

 

Nevada (31 delegates) – Jan 19 Caucus

2006 general electorate: 13% Latino

 

In Nevada, Clinton leads by 24 points*

 

Mason Dixon April 30-May 1

Among all D caucus-goers

HRC

37

Edwards

13

Obama

12

Gore

9

Richardson

6

 

 

3. Hillary Clinton has very high favorability among Hispanics nationally.

 

NBC/WSJ March 2-5; Among Hispanics

Favorability

HRC

61

Barack Obama

28

 

 

4. Hillary's Record

 

Hillary Clinton understands the challenges Latino voters face and for thirty-five years she's worked to solve them. While in law school Hillary researched the education and health of migrant children and after law school, she turned down lucrative jobs to work for the Children's Defense Fund because she wanted to make sure every child would grow up being nurtured and protected. She championed a bill that gave millions of uninsured children health insurance. She has been fighting to raise the minimum wage. And she has remained committed to providing more qualified teachers, better daycare, and college mentoring to help our children succeed. Just last week, Hillary Clinton proposed expanding pre-kindergarten classes to serve all of America's 4-year-olds today, providing them with a high-quality early education that studies show leads to higher achievement, graduation rates and higher-earning careers. Proposals such as these particularly benefit Latino families — in 2005, twenty two percent of children under the age of five were Latino.

 

Hillary Clinton strongly supports comprehensive immigration reform, family reunification, and the DREAM Act, which would enable students who are the children of non-citizens to pursue higher education without residency restrictions. She remains committed to addressing healthcare disparities, sponsoring legislation which allows legal immigrant children and pregnant women to obtain Medicaid and SCHIP.

 

Hillary Clinton recently introduced an amendment to remove barriers to reunification for the nuclear families of lawful permanent residents. The amendment would reclassify the spouses and minor children of lawful permanent immigrants as "immediate relatives," thereby exempting them from the visa caps. She did this because Hillary Clinton knows, "The United States is a country built by immigrants, but our laws are tearing legal immigrant families apart."

 

Hillary Clinton's support of sensible immigration reform, including earned citizenship and family reunification has helped her win strong support in the Latino community. Her support for universal health care, a higher minimum wage, universal pre-kindergarten and full funding for Head Start also help explain why she is so popular among Latinos.

 

5. Campaign

 

Hillary Clinton is showing her commitment to the Hispanic community and eagerness to hear from them. She has staffed the highest levels of her campaign with highly qualified Hispanics, starting with her campaign manager Patti Solis-Doyle – the first Latina ever to lead a presidential campaign.

 

Hispanic Communications Director, Fabiola Rodríguez-Ciampoli

Hispanic Outreach Director, Laura Peña

Deputy Political Director for Northeast States, Edgar Santana

California Communications Director, Luís Vizcaino

California Field Director, Michael Trujillo

Consultant María Echaveste (White House Deputy Chief of Staff under President Clinton)

Strategist Sergio Bendixen

Raúl Yzaguirre

Former President, National Council of La Raza

Campaign Role: National Co-Chair, Chair of Hispanic Outreach

Fabián Núñez

Speaker of the CA Assembly

Campaign Role: National Co-Chair

Dolores Huerta

Co-founder, United Farm Workers

Campaign Role: Co-Chair of Hispanic Outreach