Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Candidates facing more Latino voters who don’t speak Spanish

LOS ANGELES — As the protracted race for the White House and Congress unfolds 18 months before the 2016 elections, candidates intent on garnering the all-important Latino vote may want to keep this in mind: Speaking and advertising in Spanish may fall on deaf ears.

A record 33.2 million Hispanics in the U.S. — more than two-thirds of Latinos age 5 or older — speak English proficiently, according to new research by the Pew Research Center in Washington, D.C.

And the share who speak Spanish at home has dropped from 78 percent to 73 percent since 2000. In 1980, 28 percent of U.S.-born Latinos spoke Spanish at home and said they did not speak English proficiently. By 2013, only 11 percent did.

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