Politics Magazine

The Growing Hispanic Population Could Define U.S. Future

Posted on the 22 February 2019 by Jobsanger
The following is a guest post by Arnaldo Brito of Diversityjobs.com:
Growing Hispanic Population Could Define U.S. FutureHow U.S. Hispanic population could define the nations future. The huge growth of the U.S. Hispanic or Latino population has been well investigated and documented by many important institutes and experts in recent decades. We are witnessing the beginning of an impacting demographic phenomenon which could reshape U.S. society in the next decades. All ambits could change, from cultural elements like gastronomy, the generalization of bilingualism, to the economy with the appearance of new consumer trends.Even the most important political decisions including the future vision of this nation could be redefined to be more plural and multicultural.   Growing Hispanic Population Could Define U.S. FutureAn aspect in which the U.S. Hispanic population growth will be felt is the political and electoral participation. In recent years, there have been statistical analyses projecting the U.S. demographic behavior which provided us with an excellent opportunity to evaluate the possible impact of the Hispanic growth population in the U.S.. Current youth Hispanic population could decide U.S. destiny in next decades. In this sense, the Pew Research Center developed a projection based on U.S. Census Bureau data from 2017. This investigation concluded that as soon as in the elections of the year 2020, Hispanics will be the largest ethnic group in the electorate, accounting for more than 13% of eligible voters (more than blacks). This number has grown continuously from the 2000 presidential election when it was 7%. The U.S.-born Millennials and Generation ZHispanics are those who have most influenced this growth. In fact, according to the Pew Research Center, Hispanic Millennials represented 44% of the 27.3 million Hispanic eligible voters projected for the past 2016 election, a percentage superior to any other racial group of voters. A very interesting stat is that by 2015, the median age between the 35 million U.S.-born Hispanics is only 19 (according to Stepler and Brown) so they will be the Hispanic voters main source of growth over the next decades.  This growth in the Hispanic population could lose its social impact if it is not accompanied by a rise in Hispanic educational preparation. In that sense, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of Hispanic students registered in U.S. schools, colleges, and universities increased from 8.8 million to 17.9 million from 1996 to 2016. Currently, Hispanic students represent almost 23% of all students enrolled in school, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.  
The growth in enrollment rates by age for Hispanics was especially evident at the youngest ages and the 18- to 24-year-old group. For example, between 18 and 19 years old, Hispanic enrollment had a 21.4% increase, against only 5.9% for non-Hispanics. At ages 20 to 21, the raises were 26.4% for Hispanics and just 9.1% for non-Hispanics. The combination of these two aspects, the growth in demographic volume and the growth in youths acquiring academic preparation will have an effect in the future. There will be more Hispanics involved in the business world as entrepreneurs, employees, or investors. Additionally, their bilingual and multicultural nature will make them an important resource to U.S. business corporations, especially those looking to expand operations into the Latino market or Latin America. Elements like these will gain relevance by the middle of the current century when Hispanics represent one of every four U.S. inhabitants.
Could Hispanics be more decisive in electoral processes? Contrary to their growth trend, Hispanic voter turnout rates have been under those of other groups. In 2012 and 2016, fewer than half of Hispanic eligible voters, 48% and 47,6% according to the Center for Immigration Studies (C.I.S.) cast a ballot. These numbers contrast with 64.1% of whites and 66.6% of blacks who voted. Growing Hispanic Population Could Define U.S. FutureOne reason for this behavior could be that electoral campaigns tend to reduce their efforts in States in which a hard-fought electoral battle is not expected. This occurs in States like New York, California, and Texas, where the majority of the Hispanic voters are located (52% in 2016). This fact may seem an isolated element; however, it becomes important if we consider the growth that the Hispanic population has been experiencing in States that traditionally did not have a significant Hispanic or Latino population. According to the Pew Research Center between 2000 and 2015, states such as Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Virginia, Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Georgia, Maryland, and New Jersey have experienced increases ranging from 57, 7% up to 176% in the number of Hispanics inhabitants. 
If this trend continues, the growth of the Hispanic population in States that until now have had a relatively small Hispanic or Latino population could become a very influential factor for both, in electoral processes and in Hispanic participation in positions of political or corporate leadership, as well as the market for Latino Jobs. Conclusion It is a fact that minorities are raising their share in the U. S. population and statistical trends indicate it will continue happening in the future. The U.S. Hispanic population growth is the main cause of the demographic transformation of America. Hispanics are introducing important changes in all society segments. This is a reality that has to be assumed by all the major U.S. institutions like the government, political organizations, and the educative system. It should be taken as an opportunity for the national future and an important resource for a country in a changing process. Progressively well see Hispanics elevating their participation and achieving higher education levels, boosting their contribution to the economic growth, playing a gradually more powerful role in politics and in consequence, in the definition of the national destiny. This is how demographic phenomena transform our world.

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