(CNN) – The latest national survey of likely Latino voters shows President Barack Obama retaining a big lead over rival Mitt Romney in the key voting demographic, matching the level of support he received from Latinos in 2008.
The poll also showed a majority of Latinos said the economy was a more important issue than immigration, and indicated enthusiasm among Latinos is lower than it is among non-Latino whites.
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Obama enjoys the backing of 70% of likely Latino voters, according to the CNN/ORC International survey, slightly higher than the 67% of Latinos who voted for him in 2008. Republican nominee John McCain garnered 31% of the 2008 Latino vote. In 2004, 53% of Latinos went for the Democratic nominee John Kerry over the 44% who went for President George W. Bush, according to national exit polls.
In Tuesday's poll, Romney wins support from 26% of Latino voters questioned.
Obama's approval rating has improved markedly among Latinos since 2010, the poll indicated. He stood at 57% approval two years ago, and was at 68% in Tuesday's poll. Twenty-eight percent of Latinos disapproved of the job Obama is doing as president, compared to 41% who disapproved in 2010.
When asked to rate their enthusiasm for voting on Election Day, 24% of Latinos said they were extremely enthusiastic, compared to 25% who said very enthusiastic, 24% who said somewhat enthusiastic, and 14% who said they were not enthusiastic.
Those numbers are lower than the enthusiasm figures for non-white Latinos, as measured in a CNN/ORC poll taken at the end of September. In that survey, 41% of non-Latino whites said they were extremely enthusiastic about voting in November.
A Pew Hispanic Center report released Monday predicted getting eligible Latino voters to the polls in November would provide the campaigns with a challenge. The report indicated a record 23.7 million Latinos are eligible to vote November 6, but that the turnout rate for the group in 2008 – 50% - was lower than that of black voters (65%) and white voters (66%).
In Tuesday's CNN/ORC survey, 44% of Latino adults rated the economy as their top issue, while immigration policy came in a distant second at 14%. Asked to choose between the economy and immigration, nearly three quarters of Latinos – 74% - said the economy was more important. Twenty-three percent said immigration.
Broken down by topic, 50% of Latinos said unemployment was the top economic issue facing the country. Nineteen percent named the federal deficit, and 15% said gas prices.
Large majorities of Latinos named Obama as the candidate who would better handle the issues they rate as most important – 68% said the president would better handle the economy generally, and 69% said Obama would better handle unemployment.
On immigration policy, Obama's lead was even greater: 74% said the president would better handle the hot button issue, compared to 20% who named Romney.
The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International with telephone interviews of 601 adult Latinos, in English and Spanish, between September 25 and October 1. The sampling error was plus or minus 5.5 percentage points for likely voters, and 4 percentage points for all Latino adults.
CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.
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I'm hispanic and he does not have my vote
Obama is going to win Obama is going to win
no need to go to vote
I'm a french tourist and my family would love to vote here in america. We'll be staying in Pittsburg November 6th. Can't wait.
Willard and Ann are not going to like this.
Funny , every Hispanic I speak with say romney has the vote.
I also live in the barro
LOL! But Romney is part Mexican!
On a lighter note, according to RCP, both NH and NM is now leaning for the President as they are both over the margin of error at the moment. If that is the case that would put Obama exactly 1 point of 270, Mitts would have to sweep all the other states including FL, IW, NV, VA were he is trailing within the margin of error and NC and MO, which he is leading within the margin of error.
That being all said, Mitts will have to not just win this debate tomorrow, he will have to crush Obama and play error free for the next 33 days. If any gaffes in the debates or on the campaign trail, it will be game, set, match for Mr. I don't care for the 47%.
i think that latinos should go out and work each day! they should start paying taxes and support their children!
no more free rides!!
I bet that those 70% are illegal... Any one in their right mind would not give Obama another for years. Oh CNN, you suck
that's why the GOP is trying to deport them before the election
all 3 legal ones, that's allot
And later it was revealed that 70% latinos were illegals.
Minorities (especially black people)
With Romney as President, leave your rights in your head. Because they will only be a dream. And the revised JIm Crow laws will make certain of that.
With Romney as President get used to big government spying into your uterus
With Romney as President be ready to show your papers. Because this Country will be a police state and you will be the target.
With Romney as President be ready to raise another man’s baby, possibly by a black man.If your wife, daughter or loved one gets raped and becomes pregnant, by law she will be forced to have the baby.
With Romney as President you'd better make peace with God. Because some of you will die giving birth. Because your bodies will not be mature enough to carry a baby to term.
That's odd since Univision reported that they want to know what happened with Fast and Furious.
Time and again the polls prove that Obama is supported by the majority of every group except older white males. Its over GOP time to pack your stuff and go.
How many can vote is the question.
I'd much rather have working for me a hard working Latino, than a racist white male
Wow, it's very exciting to have our country's future and policies dictated by the blacks & mexicans. That really is FORWARD thinking. Why follow what the successful people are doing when you can follow in the footsteps of the day laborers and unemployed of this country? Brilliant! Good luck America, you're going to need it.
Republicans only have themselves to blame.
They kowtowed to the Chamber of Commerce that wanted cheap labor and allowed tens of millions of poor people arrive here and get on the tax payer provided Democrat gravy train.
All the while, Democrats were busy killing off preborn Citizens in the womb under the guise of "choice".
Republicans sold out the future for short term profit.
You are now witnessing the 21st Century fall of Rome
Wow could CNN be anymore in the can for Obama along with the rest of the "mainstream" media? Can't wit for your strategy to backfire. I wonder what so many are afraid of with the voter ID laws – you can't drive, buy cigarettes, fly, cross an internaitonal border, buy liquor, get insurance, open a bank account, get into many offcie buildings across the country, cash a check, etc., etc., without ID – what's the problem with asking voters to show ID? I don't get it – what are democrats so afraid of??? Voting, especially for President, is one of the most important things an American can do – it is a shame that there are people who cheat the system for their man and are afraid to have proper ID laws in place. Talk about stealing an election.
Of course the conservatard commenters here have to say what they do best: all Latinos are illegal immigrants, or all illegal immigrants are just itching to vote fraudulently.
How many of them are in this country legally? Or doesn't that count anymore?
This poll and all of CNN is crap, I only look at it to see how biased they are, they have no ratings and have gone done hill because of reporting the news they make it with all their left leaning editorials. Everyone needs to vote and vote for Romeny he may not be the best but he is better than Obama.
Didn't know the morons make derogatory comments about the Latino population could actually read. Why are Republicans trying suppress the voting, because the 47% are tired of the stuff they've been trying to feed us for years. What I find amazing is that the other 45% are too stupid to realize this country is run by the rich and affluent! Why are millionaires and billionaires giving millions to the Romney campaign because they don't want to pay their fair share and they want YOU ignorant idiots to keep on paying their way! WAKE UP
We have reached the apex. From here on out we will begin to have a liberal/democrat run USA. The fastest growing voting blocks happen to be the ones who are mostly likely to receive government supplied benefits and handouts. And as they grow in numbers and vote accordingly this country is screwed. Any person with an ioda of intellectual honesty knows you can't sustain a country by handing all our tax money.
Romney will have to get another orange spray tan in response to this poll.