Released: February 1, 2008
Hispanics in the 2008 Election: Illinois
Illinois’s Hispanic population is the fifth-largest in the nation. Nearly 1.9 million Hispanics reside in Illinois, 4% of all Hispanics in the United States. There are over 708,000 eligible Hispanic voters in Illinois, 4% of all U.S. Hispanic eligible voters.1 This fact sheet provides key demographic information on Latino eligible voters.2 It also contains data on other major groups of eligible voters in Illinois, with comparative data for the U.S. All data are from the Census Bureau’s 2006 American Community Survey.3
Hispanics in Illinois’s Eligible Voter Population
- Illinois’s population is 15% Hispanic, the tenth-highest Hispanic population share nationally. New Mexico ranks first with 45%.
- 8% of eligible voters in Illinois are Latinos, the tenth-largest Hispanic eligible voter population share nationally. New Mexico ranks first with 38%.
- 38% of Latinos in Illinois are eligible to vote, ranking Illinois 28th nationwide in the share of the Hispanic population that is eligible to vote.
Characteristics of Eligible Voters
- 35% of Hispanic eligible voters in Illinois are ages 18 to 29. By contrast, 22% of all Illinois eligible voters and the same share of all U.S. eligible voters are in that age range.
- A greater share of Hispanic eligible voters in Illinois (33%) are naturalized citizens than are all Hispanic eligible voters nationwide (26%).
- 30% of Latino eligible voters in Illinois have not completed high school compared with 13% of all Illinois eligible voters who have not completed that level of education.
- 67% of Hispanic eligible voters in Illinois live in owner-occupied homes compared with 74% of all Illinois eligible voters. By contrast, a lesser share of all Hispanic eligible voters in the U.S. live in owner-occupied homes (60%) than do Illinois Hispanic eligible voters.
Characteristics of Eligible Voters in Illinois, by Race and Ethnicity
- Latino eligible voters are outnumbered by black eligible voters in Illinois by nearly 2 to 1—708,000 Latinos to 1.3 million blacks.
- Latino eligible voters are younger than white and black eligible voters in Illinois. 35% of Latinos are ages 18 to 29 compared with 19% of white eligible voters and 26% of black eligible voters.
- Nearly one-third of Latino eligible voters in Illinois are naturalized citizens compared with only 5% of white eligible voters and 2% of black eligible voters.
- Fewer Hispanic eligible voters in Illinois (67%) live in owner-occupied homes than do Illinois white eligible voters (79%). By contrast, only 48% of black eligible voters in Illinois live in owner-occupied homes.
- In this fact sheet, eligible voters are defined as U.S. citizens ages 18 and older. Eligible voters are not the same as registered voters. To cast a vote, in all states except North Dakota, an eligible voter must first register to vote. ↩
- The terms “Hispanic” and “Latino” are used interchangeably. References to “whites” and “blacks” are to the non-Hispanic components of those populations. ↩
- The specific data set used to derive estimates contained in this fact sheet are from the University of Minnesota’s Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS) for the 2006 American Community Survey (1% sample). Information can be found on the following Website: http://usa.ipums.org/usa/. The estimates in this fact sheet are subject to sampling error. Also, estimates in this fact sheet will differ from estimates that may be published by the Census Bureau because of differences between the data used by the Census Bureau and the data it has released for public use. Further information on Census data and on sampling error in the data is available at http://www.census.gov/acs/www/Downloads/2006/AccuracyPUMS.pdf. ↩