Latinos in the 2014 Election: New Mexico
This profile provides key demographic information on Latino eligible voters1 and other major groups of eligible voters in New Mexico.2 All demographic data are based on Pew Research Center tabulations of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey.3
Hispanics in New Mexico’s Eligible Voter Population
- The Hispanic population in New Mexico is the ninth largest in the nation. About 980,000 Hispanics reside in New Mexico, 1.9% of all Hispanics in the United States.
- New Mexico’s population is 47% Hispanic, the largest Hispanic statewide population share nationally. The state with the second largest Hispanic population share is California, which is 38% Hispanic.
- There are 585,000 Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico—the eighth largest Hispanic statewide eligible voter population nationally. California ranks first with 6.4 million.
- Some 40% of New Mexico eligible voters are Hispanic, the largest Hispanic statewide eligible voter share nationally. Texas ranks second with 27%.
- Some 60% of Hispanics in New Mexico are eligible to vote, ranking New Mexico fourth nationwide in the share of the Hispanic population that is eligible to vote. By contrast, 83% of the state’s white population is eligible to vote.
Characteristics of Eligible Voters
- Age. About three-in-ten Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico (28%) are ages 18 to 29, somewhat lower than the share of all Latino eligible voters nationwide (33%) in that age range. Only 22% of all New Mexico eligible voters and of all U.S. eligible voters are ages 18 to 29.
- Citizenship and Nativity. Among Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico, 7% are naturalized U.S. citizens. This is less than the 25% of Hispanic eligible voters in the U.S. and the 8% of eligible voters in the U.S. overall, but greater than the 4% of all eligible voters in New Mexico who are naturalized U.S. citizens.
- Hispanic Origin. Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico have a different Hispanic origin profile from Hispanic eligible voters nationwide. Some 55% of Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico are of Mexican origin, 1% are of Puerto Rican origin, and 44% claim other Hispanic origin. Among all Hispanic eligible voters nationwide, 59% are Mexican, 14% are Puerto Rican, and 27% are of some other Hispanic origin.
- Educational Attainment. Some two-in-ten Latino eligible voters in New Mexico have not completed high school, higher than the 13% of all New Mexico eligible voters who have not completed high school and lower than the 23% of Hispanics nationwide who have not completed high school.
- Homeownership. Some seven-in-ten Hispanic eligible voters in New Mexico live in owner-occupied homes, greater than the 56% of all Hispanic eligible voters nationwide. About seven-in-ten (71%) of all eligible voters in New Mexico and 67% of all eligible voters nationwide live in owner-occupied homes.
Characteristics of Eligible Voters in New Mexico, by Race and Ethnicity
- Number of Eligible Voters. Although there are more Hispanics than whites in New Mexico, white eligible voters (686,000) outnumber Hispanic eligible voters (585,000). Hispanic eligible voters outnumber Native American eligible voters by almost 5 to 1 and black voters by about 24 to 1.
- Age. More than one-quarter of Latino eligible voters (28%) are ages 18 to 29. This is a higher percentage of young eligible voters than the rate for whites (16%) and similar to the rate for Native Americans (29%) and blacks (33%).
- Educational Attainment. Hispanic eligible voters have lower levels of high school education than do white eligible voters in New Mexico. Some 20% of Hispanic eligible voters have not obtained a high school diploma, compared with 6% of white eligible voters. Some 21% of Native Americans and 19% of blacks lack a high school diploma. Hispanic eligible voters are less likely to have at least a bachelor’s degree (13%) than whites (36%) or blacks (20%). Hispanic eligible voters are more likely to have a bachelor’s degree or more than Native Americans (10%).
- Homeownership. Hispanic eligible voters (70%) are more likely to live in owner-occupied homes than black eligible voters (48%) in New Mexico, but are about as likely to live in owner-occupied homes as Native American (69%) eligible voters and slightly less likely than white eligible voters (72%).
- 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 other races and ethnicities are to the non-Hispanic components of those populations. ↩
- This statistical profile of eligible voters is based on the Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey (ACS). The ACS is the largest household survey in the United States, with a sample of about 3 million addresses. The data used for this statistical profile come from the 2012 ACS Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS), representing a 1% sample of the U.S. population. Like any survey, estimates from the ACS are subject to sampling error and (potentially) measurement error. More information is available on ACS sampling strategy and associated error. ↩