As economy struggles, Latinos turn Republican | EDITORIAL

Carolina Serrano, right, Hispanic engagement coordinator for the Nevada Republican Party, assis ...

President Joe Biden looks likely to leave office with at least one major political accomplishment. He’s on pace to be known as the president responsible for driving millions of Hispanic voters to the Republican Party.

Over the last few months, there’s been a new subgenre of political reporting. These articles detail how more and more Hispanic voters are supporting Republicans. They usually feature Democrats shocked and dismayed that Latinos aren’t acting as a unified and unquestioning voting bloc. As it turns out, high gas prices, runaway inflation and a looming recession aren’t popular in any demographic.

The Washington Post recently did a story on how Democrats are facing “weary Vegas voters.” Local Latino residents are exhausted with worries about their finances. They know exactly who’s responsible too.

“The Democrats, this time around, have disappointed us. I think they’re going too far left,” Chris Romano, a Mexican American, told the Post. “We all remember we were better off under (former president Donald Trump). There was money flowing in the street. People seemed happier.”

CNN did a similar piece in Las Vegas with similar results. Isaura Gonzalez, who works at a local casino, said most people in her neighborhood usually vote Democrat. But it’s different this year.

“Many people, they changed (parties) or they aren’t voting because they know they never change things,” she said.

That’s happening around the country. On the same day as Nevada’s primary election, Mayra Flores won a special election in a Texas House district. She is the first woman born in Mexico to win a seat in the House of Representatives. Her parents earned their living as migrant workers, and she even worked in cotton fields to earn extra money. Hard work and education allowed her to and graduate from college.

In other circumstances, Democrats might consider that a profile straight from central casting, except for one thing. She’s a Republican.

That is no run-of-the-mill district either. It’s 85 percent Hispanic, and Ms. Flores will be the first Republican to ever hold the seat. Special elections aren’t perfect predictors of coming events. But it’s still an outcome that didn’t seem possible just a few years ago.

Around 19 percent of the U.S. population is Hispanic. In Nevada, it’s around 30 percent. Nationally, Latinos usually vote Democratic by more than 30 percentage points. That margin is likely to be much closer in November.

Democrats’ policies directly led to high inflation and record gas prices. Latino voters have noticed. In ever-increasing numbers, they’re realizing that their lives were better with Republicans in charge.