November 15, 2016

Unlike other Latinos, about half of Cuban voters in Florida backed Trump

In Florida, Cubans were about twice as likely as non-Cuban Latinos to vote for Donald Trump. More than half (54%) supported the Republican president-elect, compared with about a quarter (26%) of non-Cuban Latinos, according to National Election Pool exit poll data.

A significant share of Cubans in Florida voted for Hillary Clinton – 41% – but this was far below the 71% of non-Cuban Latinos who backed the Democratic nominee. At the same time, the level of support for Trump among Cubans was similar to that of non-Latinos in the state (51%).

Overall, 35% of Latino voters in Florida supported Trump, but that share was down from 2012, when Mitt Romney won 39% of their vote.

Two-thirds (67%) of the nation’s 1.2 million Cuban eligible voters live in Florida, with many living in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach area. But as Florida’s Latino eligible voter population has grown (reaching 2.6 million in 2014), the Cuban share of that population has declined to 31%. (The Puerto Rican share of the state’s Latino eligible population stands at 28%.)

Florida was once again a battleground state this year, which focused attention from the campaigns and nonpartisan groups on the Latino vote statewide. As a result, Latino turnout was up among early voters, according to news reports. And the Florida exit poll shows the share of the state’s voters who were Latino grew from 17% in 2012 to 18% in 2016.

While there is no exit poll data that shows how Cubans in Florida voted in 2008 or 2012, our National Survey of Latinos has found that Cuban registered voters have been shifting toward the Democratic Party for more than a decade.

Topics: U.S. Political Parties, Race and Ethnicity, Hispanic/Latino Vote, Hispanic/Latino Demographics, 2016 Election

  1. Photo of Jens Manuel Krogstad

    is a writer/editor focusing on Hispanics, immigration and demographics at Pew Research Center.

  2. Photo of Antonio Flores

    is a research assistant focusing on Hispanic research at Pew Research Center.

1 Comment

  1. Anonymous8 months ago

    Why isn’t the Hispanic or Latino vote broken down by country of origin? Are records kept on European origin voters as a group or country of origin?
    Why are we grouped in this way? It would be interesting to understand the origins of these classifications…

    1. Aaaaaa 1234567898 months ago

      It’s purely in the name of understanding the population’s votes.
      Statistics work that way. People’s race, gender, ancestors, country of origin, income level, and so on and so forth do have an effect on their mindset and behavior. (Note that this is not about discrimination, which concerns the effect that those factors have on others’ behaviors regarding that person.)

      Nevertheless, the level of political sensitivity that modern times, a certain host-your-own-blog six-letter website starting with a T you’ll have heard about, and some misguided movements and protests have caused imply that it’s suddenly “wrong” to ask directly for those characteristics themselves. A survey that asks for race, country of origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation and income bracket would immediately be written off as made by bigots in order to defend their supremacy, instead of being treated as the data-gathering effort that any survey is. Therefore, most surveys have to stick to the compromise approach of asking for a few broad profiling questions and doing what they can with that data.