[Posted by Karl]
Of course, the Political Wire headline for this story is “Obama Still Strong Among Hispanic Voters“:
A new AP/Univision poll finds 57% of Hispanics approve of President Obama’s job performance compared with 44% among the general population.
The AP spin is not nearly as heavy:
President Barack Obama’s once solid support among Hispanics is showing a few cracks, a troubling sign for Democrats desperate to get this critical constituency excited about helping the party hold onto Congress this fall.
Still, 57 percent of Hispanics approve of the president’s overall job performance compared with 44 percent among the general population in the latest AP national polling.
What neither Political Wire nor the AP report is that the previous AP/Univision poll (.pdf), conducted in May, showed 66 percent job approval for Pres. Obama. Interestingly, the two AP/Univision polls are not directly comparable. The May poll was conducted by Roper from 5/7-12, whereas the new poll was conducted by NORC over a much longer period, from 3/11-6/3. Accordingly, it is difficult to extract a short-term trend from this data.
However, the trend is quite visible in the data at Gallup’s Presidential Job Approval Center. According to Gallup, Obama’s approval numbers among Hispanics has slid from the low-to-mid-70s at the end of 2009 to the mid-50s now. (In contrast, the similar numbers for whites have not moved much outside the low-40s to high-30s.)
One thing the AP gets right is that the Dems consider Hispanics a critical constituency, in both the shorter and longer term. But given the trend, and Obama’s even more anemic numbers on whether he is meeting the needs of Hispanic voters, Dems seeking to energize this constituency have their work cut out for them. The Obama administration’s demagogy over Arizona’s immigration law boosted their ratings on some issues, but the big picture is one of skidding support.