February 23, 2017

Latinos and the New Trump Administration

2. Looking forward: Hispanics’ expectations of Trump as president

As the new administration begins, a plurality of Hispanics have pessimistic expectations of the job Donald Trump will do as president, though Hispanics are divided by party and, to a lesser extent, by gender on this issue. Among Hispanics, Democrats and women generally have negative expectations for Trump’s presidency, while men and Republicans have more positive expectations.

Overall, 40% of Hispanics say they think Trump will be a terrible (24%) or poor (15%) president, while about a fifth (22%) say he will be a good (16%) or great (6%) president. About three-in-ten Hispanics (28%) say Trump will be an average president.

The general public is just as negative in its outlook on Trump’s presidency as Hispanics, with 38% of all Americans saying that Trump will be either a terrible (25%) or poor (13%) president. By contrast, 35% of Americans say Trump will be a good (22%) or great (14%) president, a more positive assessment than that among Hispanics. Meanwhile, the general public (18%) is less likely than Hispanics (28%) to say they expect Trump to be an average president.

Among Hispanics, about three-in-ten (28%) men think Trump will be a great (9%) or good (19%) president; Hispanic women are about half as likely (16%) to say Trump will be a great (3%) or good (13%) president. About the same share of men (31%) and women (25%) think Trump will be an average president. Meanwhile, a higher share of women (47%) think Trump will be a poor (17%) or terrible (30%) president, compared with the 32% of men who expect him to be a poor (13%) or terrible (19%) president.

There are few differences in expectations for Trump’s presidency by age among Latinos. However, expectations for Trump are more polarized among Latinos ages 65 and older than among other groups of Latinos. For example, just 13% of those 65 and older expect Trump to be an average president, yet 30% say he will be a great or good president and another 44% say he will be a poor or terrible president. By contrast, among Latinos ages 18 to 29, 36% say he will be an average president, 20% say he will be good or great and 40% say he will be a poor or terrible. Similar patterns emerge among other age groups of Latinos.

There are no major differences between immigrant Hispanics and U.S.-born Hispanics in their expectations of Trump as president. Among U.S.-born Hispanics, 43% say Trump will be a poor or terrible president and 22% say he will be a good or great president. Among Hispanic immigrants these views are similar, with 37% rating Trump negatively and 22% saying he will be a good or great president. Both groups are about twice as likely to say that Trump will be a poor or terrible president as to say he will be a good or great president. About three-in-ten in each group think Trump will be an average president.

However, there are differences between groups of Hispanic immigrants in their expectations of the new president. Among Hispanic immigrants who are lawful permanent residents, 21% say Trump will be a good or great president, 34% say he will be an average president and 34% say he will be a poor or terrible president. Hispanic immigrants who are not U.S. citizens and who are not lawful permanent residents have similar views. By contrast, among Hispanic immigrants who are U.S. citizens, 26% say Trump will be a good or great president, 18% say he will be average and 41% say he will be poor or terrible.

There are sharp divides in how Hispanic Republicans, Democrats and independents expect Trump will do as president. About half (53%) of Hispanic Republicans say Trump will be a great (22%) or good (31%) president – the highest share among all major Hispanic demographic subgroups. By contrast, about one-in-ten Hispanic Democrats (12%) and two-in-ten independents (22%) think positively of Trump as president. Among major partisan groups, Hispanic independents are the most likely (33%) to say that Trump will be an average president. At the same time, a majority (58%) of Democrats expect Trump to be a poor (20%) or terrible (38%) president, three times the share of Republicans who say the same. Roughly a third (36%) of independents think Trump will be a terrible (20%) or poor (16%) president.