For Latino Americans, the U.S. offers opportunity but also discrimination

New Axios-Ipsos poll in partnership with Telemundo finds differences by age in perceptions of opportunity in the U.S.

The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • James Diamond Senior Research Manager, Public Affairs
  • Johnny Sawyer Senior Research Analyst
  • Jocelyn Duran Account Manager, US, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, March 29, 2022 - A new Axios-Ipsos Latino Poll in partnership with Telemundo finds that inflation and supply chain issues are the top concern among Latino Americans. At the same time, many feel unrepresented by both major parties, while increasingly finding Republicans strong on a top concern — the economy.

 

The poll also finds that many believe a strong work ethic is very important to success in America and that the “American Dream” is attainable — though differences exist by age. Finally, many report having experienced a variety of prejudice over the last year.  

 

Detailed Findings

1. Inflation and supply chain issues are the top concern for Latinos, with more concerned about it now than in December. Many still feel isolated from both major parties, though more now view Republicans as strong on the economy.

  • Compared to December, Latino Americans are increasingly concerned about inflation or supply chain issues (34% vs. 22%), and foreign conflicts (23% vs 5%). At the same time, they are less concerned about COVID-19 (21% vs. 37%).
  • Concerns over inflation has increased across party lines, though is most pronounced among Republican Latinos (up to 52% from 33%).
  • Democrats (33%) are still seen as caring about Latinos more than Republicans (8%), though a plurality say neither party do (24%) or they don’t know (21%).
  • Slightly fewer Latino Americans say the Democratic party represents people like them than in December (32% vs. 38%). Again, a plurality say neither party does (23%) or they don’t know (18%).
  • Republicans are seen as being slightly better on the economy than Democrats (24% vs. 19%), whereas in December there was no difference between the two parties.

2. A majority of Latino Americans feel that they belong in the U.S. while still feeling a connection to the country or countries of their family’s heritage. Many believe in the promise of the “American Dream.”

  • More than six in ten Latinos agree the U.S. has opportunities for all people (68%) and that they can live the “American Dream” (61%).
    • These beliefs are more strongly held by Republican Latinos than Democratic or independent ones.
    • Those under 30 are less likely than those over 30 to believe they can live the “American Dream.”
  • The same share of Latinos share a connection to the country or countries of their family’s heritage (57%) as feel the U.S. makes them feel like they belong here.
  • Both first (63%) and second (54%) generation Latinos feel a closer connection to the country or countries of their family’s heritage than do third generation (34%) ones.

3. Hard work and a supportive family are viewed as keys to achieving success in America rather than luck or wealthy parents. However, differences exist by age.

  • Three-fourths (74%) say a strong work ethic is very important to succeeding in America while nearly all (94%) agree it is very or somewhat important.
    • Those 50+ are more likely to say it is very important than those under 50.
  • Seven in ten (70%) say a supportive family is very important to succeeding in America and 62% say the ability to speak English is.
  • By comparison, far fewer say luck (23%) or rich parents (18%) are very important to succeeding in America.
  • Those under 30 are more likely to view luck as very important to success than those 30+ by a roughly 14 percentage point margin. This is likely in part due to partisan differences, with 28% of Democrats viewing luck as very important to success vs. 12% of Republicans.image

4. Latinos value education, with many believing a college education is important to success in America.

  • More than four in ten (43%) say a college education is very important to succeeding in America. This is higher among first generation Latinos (51%) than second (31%) or third (39%). Overall, 83% agree college is very or somewhat important to success.
  • Nearly all (90%) support requiring K-12 education, with two thirds (66%) strongly supporting it.
  • Just under half (44%) support giving parents the ability to stop schools from teaching subjects that parents do not like.
    • Republican (64%) Latinos are more likely to support this than Democratic (35%) ones, with independents in the middle (46%).
  • A wide majority also support teaching middle and high schoolers about sex ed (84%) and sexuality and gender identity (67%). Support for the latter is divided by partisanship; 80% of Democrats are in support compared to just 37% of Republicans. Independents fall closer to Democrats in this case, with 71% in support.

5. Many report experiencing prejudice in the past year.

  • Roughly four in ten report having experienced someone asking where they are from and meaning a country outside the U.S. (44%), someone making racist comments about people of Hispanic or Latino descent (42%), or someone asking them if they speak English before talking to them (39%) in the past year.
  • A third (34%) have had someone make fun of a Hispanic or Latino accent.
  • One in five (20%) have had someone ask if they are illegal or undocumented.
  • Overall, two-thirds (65%) report having experienced at least one of these in the past year.
  • Those that are first or second generation have experienced more forms of prejudice than third generation Latinos, as have those from Central American decent. Similarly, those under 30 report experiencing more forms of discrimination than those 65+.

*Note, differences by country of origin for people from Central American (besides Mexican) descent may be due to low base sizes (n=69).

 

**Note, this page was update on March 29th to include results for Q21 and Q22, which were previously held back for future release.

 

About the Study

The Axios/Ipsos with Telemundo U.S. Latino Survey Q4, 2021 was conducted March 7th – March 18th, 2022 by Ipsos using our KnowledgePanel®. This poll is based on a nationally representative probability sample of 1,005 Latino/Hispanic adults age 18 or older in the United States.

The survey was conducted using KnowledgePanel, the largest and most well-established online probability-based panel that is representative of the adult US population. Our recruitment process employs a scientifically developed addressed-based sampling methodology using the latest Delivery Sequence File of the USPS – a database with full coverage of all delivery points in the US. Households invited to join the panel are randomly selected from all available households in the U.S. Persons in the sampled households are invited to join and participate in the panel. Those selected who do not already have internet access are provided a tablet and internet connection at no cost to the panel member. Those who join the panel and who are selected to participate in a survey are sent a unique password-protected log-in used to complete surveys online. As a result of our recruitment and sampling methodologies, samples from KnowledgePanel cover all households regardless of their phone or internet status and findings can be reported with a margin of sampling error and projected to the general population.

The study was conducted in both English and Spanish. The data were weighted to adjust for gender by age, education, language proficiency, Latino/Hispanic origin, household income, Census region, metropolitan status, and 2020 vote choice. Demographic benchmarks, among Latino/Hispanic adults age 18+, came from the 2021 Current Population Survey (CPS) with language proficiency from the 2019 American Community Survey (ACS). Benchmarks for 2020 Vote choice among the US Latino/Hispanic population came from Census pot-election survey and Pew 2021 validate voter survey. The weighting variables and categories were as follows:

  • Gender (Male, Female) by Age (18–29, 30–44, 45–59, and 60+)
  • Education (Less than High School grad, High School grad, Some College/Tech/Associate’s degree, Bachelor’s degree or higher)
  • Language Proficiency (English proficient, Bilingual, Spanish proficient)
  • Latino/Hispanic origin (Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central American, Other)
  • Household Income (Under $50,000, $50,000-$99,999, $100,000+)
  • Census Region (Northeast, Midwest, South, West)
  • Metropolitan status (Metro, non-Metro)
  • 2020 Vote choice (Trump, Biden, Other/Did not vote)

The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3.7 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, for results based on the entire sample of Latino/Hispanic adults. The margin of sampling error takes into account the design effect, which was 1.45. The margin of sampling error is higher and varies for results based on sub-samples. In our reporting of the findings, percentage points are rounded off to the nearest whole number. As a result, percentages in a given table column may total slightly higher or lower than 100%. In questions that permit multiple responses, columns may total substantially more than 100%, depending on the number of different responses offered by each respondent.

About Ipsos

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The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • James Diamond Senior Research Manager, Public Affairs
  • Johnny Sawyer Senior Research Analyst
  • Jocelyn Duran Account Manager, US, Public Affairs

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