May 6, 2002


Poll shows Newark election shifting along racial lines (Jeffery C. Mays, May 04, 2002, Newark Star-Ledger)
In the most recent SurveyUSA poll--taken between April 29 and May 1--57 percent of Hispanic voters supported [challenger Cory] Booker, compared to 36 percent who supported [Mayor Sharpe] James. [...]

Among African-Americans, James leads 51 percent to 40 percent. James gained a 3 percent increase in support while Booker lost 3 percent. White voters back Booker 57 percent to 31 percent. In the last poll, Booker led James 45 percent to 44 percent. [...]

The divide between African-American and Hispanic voters may...mark an end to the decades-long traditional alliance between the groups and signal that Hispanic voters are now beginning to flex their political muscle.

The Hispanic population now represents 30 percent of the city's residents, growing from 61,254 in 1980 to 80,622 in 2000, according to Census Bureau figures. Blacks make up 52 percent of Newark's population; whites, 14 percent; Asians, 1 percent; and others, 3 percent.

Republicans have a tremendous opportunity, across the nation, to exploit this racial divide between black and Hispanic voters and possibly to make the fastest growing demographic group in America an integral part of the GOP coalition. Such a coup will require Republicans to abandon what remains of their anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies and embrace a wider range of social services for immigrants, but the long term pay off would more than compensate for these compromises. Posted by Orrin Judd at May 6, 2002 9:57 PM
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