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Nearly four million new Latino eligible voters since 2020, Hispanic youth vote on the rise, says Pew Research Center

Latinos have become the second fastest growing major ethnic group in the United States since 2020, just behind Asian Americans, the report says, but the actual number of Hispanic eligible voters has increased twice as much as Asian Americans since the last election cycle

Young empowered Latina
Young empowered Latina | Shutterstock

January 18, 2024 9:07am

Updated: January 18, 2024 2:28pm

Hispanic Americans have the potential to have an unprecedented impact during the 2024 elections, an assessment based on ADN America’s review of a Jan. 10 report published by the Pew Research Center this month.  

Latinos have become the second fastest growing major ethnic group in the United States since 2020, just behind Asian Americans, the report says, but the actual number of Hispanic eligible voters has increased twice as much as Asian Americans since the last election cycle.

Nearly four million new Latino eligible voters

In the past four years, 2 million new Asian Americans have been added to the electorate, only half as many of the 3.9 million Latinos who have also become eligible to vote, according to the figures reported by Pew.

The total number of Asian American eligible voters increased from 13 million to 15 million while the total number of Hispanic American eligible voters increased from 32.3 million to 36.2 million.

“Each year, about 1.4 million Hispanics in the U.S. become eligible to vote,” the report says, a 40% increase from previous Pew projections that estimated that number a million Latinos become voter eligible each year.

ADN reported the one million number in June 2023 based on estimations from the Pew Research Center at that time. The number was revealed as part of an ADN story that the Hispanic population superseded the White non-Hispanic population Texas 12 million to 11.9 million, according to a Vintage 2022 (V2022) report published by the U.S. Census Bureau.

In fact, the Hispanic population is growing so rapidly, the U.S. Census has found that without it, the American population would decrease, and by 2060, one quarter of the national population is expected to be Latino.

The impact of 3.9 million new eligible voters could be significant, especially based on the figures of a recent USATODAY Suffolk University poll, which ADN reported on earlier this month.

How Hispanics and young Latinos are voting

While then-President Donald Trump earned the support of more Hispanics in 2020 than 2016, a majority of Latinos voted for President Biden.

But that trend appears to be shifting this 2024 election cycle.

According to the Pew Research Center, 59% of Latino voters supported Biden in 2020, and USATODAY reports that the current president led among Hispanics in the demographic by more than 2 to 1, 65%-32%.

USATODAY reported earlier this month that number has flipped in Trump’s favor with the former president now leading over his opponent by five points 39%-34%, the Gannett newspaper says.

The increase of 3.9 million new Hispanic eligible voters could be significant since USATODAY says Biden is heading into the election year “showing alarming weakness among stalwarts of the Democratic base, with Donald Trump leading among [both] Hispanic voters and young people.”

According to the January 2024 Pew report, “Hispanic eligible voters tend to be younger than eligible voters overall. Only 33% of Latino eligible voters are ages 50 and older, compared with 48% of all U.S. eligible voters.”

Still, the president may not lose as many votes as expected, since recent projections published by the University of Florida Election Lab report that turnout rates among Hispanic Americans in presidential elections have typically trailed those of some other groups.

The USATODAY Suffolk University poll also found that about 20% of Latinos and Blacks who supported Biden are now seeking a third-party alternative.  

The total number of eligible Hispanic voters has increased 153% since 2000

As America approaches the dawn of the 2024 presidential election, there are five key facts about Hispanic eligible voters Pew took notice of based on changes reported by the U.S. Census Bureau.

First, “Latinos are projected to account for 14.7% of all eligible voters in November 2024, a new high,” the Center says. That number has consistently gone up during the past 20 years.

It was 13.6% in 2020, and in 2000 Hispanics made up just 7.4% of eligible American voters.

In total, the Hispanic eligible voters have increased from 32.3 million in 2020 to a projected 36.2 million by this November 2024, a 153% increase since 2000 when only 14.3 million Hispanics were eligible to vote.

Where are most the Hispanic Americans in the United States?

According to the Pew Research center, “California is home to a quarter of all Hispanic eligible voters.” The Center says that since 2022, a whopping 8.5 million out of America’s 33.7 million Hispanic eligible voters have been concentrated in the Golden State.

Texas follows with the Lone Star state boasting 6.5 million, Florida with 3.5 million, New York with 2.2 million and Arizona with 1.3 million.

“Together, these five states hold about two-thirds (65%) of all Hispanic eligible voters,” Pew says.

The Hispanic population now supersedes the non-Hispanic White population in Texas while one third of Arizona’s overall population is Latino.

In both California and Texas about one third of eligible voters are Hispanic, 33% and 32%, respectively.

Hispanics make up 25% of eligible voters in Arizona, 22% in Nevada and Florida, 17% in Colorado and 16% in New Jersey.

New Mexico boasts the highest share of Latino eligible voters of any state in the union at 66%, including Americans who are non-Hispanic Whites, who make up 40% of New Mexico’s eligible voters.

Maryland and Tennessee had the lowest percentage of Latinos among eligible voters at 39% and 36%, respectively.

How much of the Hispanic American population is eligible to vote?

While Latinos are the second fastest growing population of eligible voters in the U.S. and have had the most dramatic increase in actual numbers of eligible voters (3.9 million since 2020 by November 2024), the overall Hispanic population is less likely to vote than other groups by a margin of 53% to 72%

“This is partly because the nation’s Latino population includes a large number of people who are too young to vote or who are not U.S. citizens,” Pew says. According to the research center:

  • 29% of Latinos are under 18, compared with 22% of the U.S. overall.
  • 19% of Latinos are not U.S. citizens, compared with 6% of the total U.S. population.

Hispanic immigrants who are not eligible to vote are a collection of asylum seekers, undocumented migrants, permanent residents with green cards, those applying to become permanent residents and others in the U.S. on temporary visas.

Educated Hispanic eligible voters on the rise

Since many Hispanic eligible voters are younger than overall eligible voters, education is a key issue.

Forty eight percent of all U.S. eligible voters are more than 50 years old compared to Latinos whose 50+ eligible voter population is only 33%.

While 21% of Latino eligible voters have a bachelor’s degree or post-graduate education compared to 33% of U.S. eligible voters overall, the number of Hispanics earning advanced degrees has more than doubled in the last two decades.

On Oct. 10, ADN reported that, according to a separate Pew Research Center study, Hispanic Americans have been the fastest growing demographic for earning advanced degrees out of any ethnic or racial group in the United States.

When Pew reviewed graduate student data from 1990 and 2000 censuses and 2010 and 2021 American Community Surveys, they found that compared to White, Black and Asian Americans, Hispanics underwent the most significant growth in earning advanced degrees. 

From 2001-2021, the number of Hispanics now holding an advanced degree escalated from 710,000 to over 2.5 million, according to the Oct. 3 study, “Key Facts about U.S. Latinos with graduate degrees.”

“In 2021, nearly 2.5 million Latinos in the United States held advanced degrees such as master’s degrees or doctorates. This represented a huge increase over 2000, when 710,000 Latinos held advanced degrees. The shift reflects Latinos’ broader increase in postsecondary enrollment and rising educational attainment,” the Pew Research center wrote.

The increase was in large part due to the educational wherewithal of Latinas, the study said. 

Over two decades there was a 291% increase in the number of Hispanic women and a 199% increase in Latino men with advanced degrees.

Eligible voters in the Pew Research Center analysis are defined as “citizens ages 18 and older residing in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.” Not all eligible voters are actually registered to vote, they just have the potential of voting since they are citizens 18 years of age.

Executive Editor

Gelet Martínez Fragela

Gelet Martínez Fragela is the founder and editor-in-chief of ADN America. She is a Cuban journalist, television producer, and political refugee who also founded ADN Cuba.