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President Barack Obama’s approval rating with Latinos has jumped 10 points since he announced a new policy of deportation relief for millions of undocumented immigrants, a new NBC News/ Wall Street Journal / Telemundo poll shows.
The new survey of 250 Latino adults shows that 57 percent now say they approve of the job that Obama is doing, compared with 47 percent of Latino voters who said the same in September, before the immigration announcement.
And, when asked if they approve of how Obama is handling the issue of immigration specifically, 56 percent give the president a thumbs up. That’s compared to 45 percent who said the same in 2010, even before Senate lawmakers constructed an immigration compromise that later languished in the GOP-led House.
A major reason for the shift appears to be a dramatic boost in approval from younger Hispanics. In September of this year, less than half – 46 percent -- of Hispanics aged 18-39 approved of the job Obama was doing as president; that share jumped to 63 percent this month.
And in 2010, 46 percent of younger Hispanics gave Obama a positive rating on his handling of immigration policy; now, 66 percent say the same.
The better approval ratings for Obama aren’t the only good news for Democrats in the poll.
The new survey also shows that Latino approval of the Republican Party continues to sputter, with just 24 percent giving the GOP positive ratings versus 42 percent offering a negative assessment. And 62 percent of Latinos say that Republican elected officials are not doing well at addressing the concerns of their community – a percentage almost unchanged since 2010.
Those preferences could have big consequences for the 2016 election.
Just 27 percent of Latinos believe it would better for the country to have a Republican as the next president, versus 49 percent who say a Democrat would be better. (Although, it’s worth noting, Latinos also say that the next president should take a different approach than Obama, by a margin of 59 percent to 34 percent.)
Sixty one percent of Latino voters said that they could see themselves supporting Hillary Clinton for president, versus 33 percent who disagreed. But the scores for Republicans with ties to the Latino community -- Jeb Bush (28%-48%), Marco Rubio (21%-37%), and Ted Cruz (17%-40%) -- are net negatives.
The survey of 250 Latinos was conducted December 10-14 and has a margin of error of +/- 6.2%