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VICTOR JOECKS: Voter registration stats show Nevada Latinos are turning red

A deep dive into Nevada’s voter registration data offers more evidence Hispanics are moving toward the Republican Party.

There are four Assembly seats in districts where Hispanics make up 50 percent of more of the adult population. Each seat represents around 74,000 people. That makes these seats a useful — albeit imperfect — proxy to gauge which way Nevada’s Hispanic voters are trending.

All of those seats have become more Republican-leaning since February — and by a greater amount than the average district. Democrats have lost 1,757 voters in those districts. Republicans have gained 49. It’s natural for registration numbers to drop as people move. The disparity here suggests a new affinity between Hispanic voters and the GOP.

Consider District 11. It covers an area just east of the Spaghetti Bowl and is more than 60 percent Hispanic. Democrats have lost 284 voters there since February. Republicans are up 84 voters. In nearby District 28, 61 percent of adults are Hispanic. The district is down 490 Democrats since February. Republican registration is down a mere six voters.

Relatively few people take the time to change their voter registration. That’s why the actions of a few hundred people could signify a much broader shift. There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that Hispanic voters are wary of Democrats and their inflation-producing policies. This data backs it up.

Sometimes political parties will focus on registering voters in highly contested seats. If that were happening here, it could be skewing the data. But these Assembly races are unlikely to be competitive. Democrats still outnumber Republicans by around a 4-to-1 ratio in these seats. That’s evidence that these changes are more organic.

There are several Republican groups trying to woo Latino voters. Adam Laxalt’s Senate campaign launched a Spanish-language radio ad last week and has a Latinos for Laxalt group. The state GOP and National Republican Senatorial Committee have committed to spending seven-figures on their Operación ¡Vamos! outreach efforts. The Republican National Committee is registering Hispanic voters and training volunteers, too.

This voter registration data suggests there are plenty of opportunities for such efforts. Republicans would be wise to continue these outreach programs after November.

Democrats aren’t just having problems with Latinos. The party’s share of voter registration decreased in every single Assembly District. Republicans lost ground in five of the 42 Assembly districts. The share of nonpartisan voters, many likely registered unwittingly at the DMV, increased the fastest. Statewide, Democrats’ voter lead is down from 3.9 percentage points in February to 2.8 percentage points in July. In raw numbers, Democrats’ advantage is down from 73,200 to 50,700.

Per the conventional wisdom, this wasn’t suppose to happen. Nevada’s growing Latino population was supposed to move the state from purple to solid blue. Then Biden, assisted by Democrats such as Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, wrecked the economy. As it turns out, the only group that supports $5 a gallon for gasoline are rich liberals who scoff at those who can’t afford electric vehicles. Go figure that didn’t sit well with Hispanic voters.

There’s ample evidence that Nevada’s Latino voters are moving toward Republican candidates. That’s going to have major implications long past November.

Contact him at vjoecks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4698. Follow @victorjoecks on Twitter.

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