Politics & Government

Dems now claim more Hispanic voters in Fla. than GOP

Hispanic voters registered as Democrats have overtaken Hispanic Republicans in Florida, signaling a trend that, if it continues, could have far-reaching implications for the 2008 election and U.S. foreign policy.

Until now, the politically influential, mostly Republican Cuban-American community in Miami-Dade made Florida the only state in the country where, among Hispanics, Republicans outnumbered Democrats. But April voter registration statistics show 418,339 Hispanic Democrats statewide, compared to 415,068 Hispanic Republicans and 345,108 registered with neither party, according to a Florida Democratic Party analysis of state data.

The trend reflects a fierce competition between the two major parties for the Hispanic vote, which could represent as much as 15 percent of the electorate in 2008. Florida Democrats are touting their expanding influence in the Hispanic community, while GOP officials say their registration and get-out-the-vote drives will be more aggressive than ever this year.

Read the full story at MiamiHerald.com.