2020 has been unlike any other year in American history. The economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic wiped out the gains, dreams, and lives of Black and Latino Americans.
The deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor have led to a second civil rights movement and a widespread effort to end systemic racism and to defund the police to increase social services. And for the cherry on top, all of this has happened during what many consider the most important election in our lifetimes.
All these factors and more have led Black, Latino, and even Native American voters to the polls in numbers not seen before. More than 100 million Americans voted before Election Day, a number so high that two days after Election Day votes are still being counted in numerous states.
James Taylor, a political scientist at the University of San Francisco, told USA Today the issues the country has faced this year have sent minorities running to the polls.
“The totality of these issues has exhausted people in the African American community, the Latino community, and the American population at large,” he said.
Voters in Georgia stood in line for more than 9 hours undeterred to exercise a right their ancestors marched and fought for. One of the reasons Georgia has yet to be declared for Joe Biden or Donald Trump is more than 200,000 mail-in ballots from Fulton and DeKalb County are still in the process of being counted.
According to NBC News, Georgia was reliably red in the past, but is now turning blue as the two counties now sport the largest concentration of Black Americans in the state and according to exit polls, backed Biden by 87% over Trump’s 11%.
However, some of the numbers show the Democrats losing minorities.
For starters, while 9 in 10 Black women have supported Democratic nominee Biden during this election, for the third consecutive time, Democratic support among Black men has fallen.
In this election, Biden has received just 80% of the Black male vote. In comparison, Hillary Clinton received 82% of the Black male vote in 2016 and former President Barack Obama received more than 85% of the Black male vote in both 2008 and 2012.
According to Vox, some Black Americans were making financial strides due to Trump’s tax cut and that has led to more Black male support for Trump. Meanwhile, Biden has promised to increase taxes on those who make more than $400,000 a year although that will be nearly impossible with Republicans holding on to the Senate.
D’Angelo Crosby, an undecided voter, told Vox his father mentioned he had never made so much money as he had during the past four years, and that Black Trump supporters he’d spoken with had a similar message.
“It was like, ‘Well, I got a higher pay rate, the highest I’ve ever been paid before. So I definitely think I want to stick with this president, because my money’s looking a little better,’” Crosby said.
Also Trump largely won Florida because in addition to maintaining his popularity among senior citizens, despite being the most vulnerable population to the coronavirus, he also made significant strides with the state’s Cuban population.
Politico reported after Clinton easily won in Miami-Dade in 2016, the Republican Party focused its efforts on the community, stepping up its anti-socialist messaging and often depicting Democrats as radical leftists and socialists—a designation Biden and his campaign struggled to shake off.
“The air you breathe here is Republican. It’s hard for Democrats to show up here and try to create a different atmosphere,” Guillermo Grenier, a pollster and Florida International University professor, told Politico.