Oct. 04, 2012— -- Much has been made this election cycle about the power of Latinos to influence not only the presidential race, but state and local elections as well.
There are enough Latino voters - who overwhelmingly vote Democratic - to swing some red states blue. For example, there are 1.4 million unregistered Latinos and eligible-to-naturalize Latino green card holders in Florida. That is five times Obama's margin of victory there in 2008.
But visualizing the state-by-state numbers of eligible Latino voters has been difficult until now.
The Pew Hispanic Center released an interactive map of Latinos as a percent of eligible voters by state using 2010 numbers this week.
According to the map, Latinos in California, Texas and New Mexico make up more than 25 percent of eligible voters in each of those states. In New Mexico, at 550,000, they make up a whopping 38.6 percent.
California has the most eligible voters who are Latino with nearly six million, and ranks third in terms of the share of eligible voters in the state who are Latino, with 25.6 percent.
The map also tracks the share of the Latino population eligible to vote in each state. Interestingly, Montana ranks first in that category. Although only 2.2 percent of eligible voters in the state are Latino, 60.1 percent of Latinos in the state, or 17,000, are eligible to vote.
The swing state of Florida comes in third in terms of Latino eligible voters, with just over two million, but ranks ninth in terms of the share of the Latino population that is eligible to vote, at 49.1 percent. The state ranks fifth, at 15.9 percent, in terms of the share of eligible voters who are Latino.
And Pennsylvania, a battleground state with a hotly debated voter ID law that is set to take effect next year, has 353,000 Latino eligible voters, putting it 10th in the nation in that category. About half of the Latino population in the state is eligible to vote, and Latinos comprise slightly less than four percent of all eligible voters in the state.
So check out the map and let us know - does the demographic in your state surprise you?