“Forging Political Identities and Becoming Citizens: The Political Preferences and Engagement of South American Immigrants in the United States and Spain”, Narayani Lasala-Blanco et al (Sciences Po CEE, France)

Research in the United States has emphasized the importance of anti-immigrant and anti-Hispanic hostility to galvanize shared identities and a sense of linked fate that is electorally mobilized around the pan-ethnic Latino identity. With survey data on the electoral behavior of South American immigrants in the United States and Spain spanning a decade (2006-2018), this article gauges how critical hostility is for electoral mobilization. The findings suggest that—despite very different institutional settings, hostility levels, elite strategies, and political mobilization patterns—South American immigrants are forging remarkably similar patterns of political preferences and engagement across both sides of the Atlantic. The overtime and comparative perspective calls into question that hostility is the main driving force behind Latino electoral participation and block voting in the United States and prompts greater attention to the socioeconomic status of Latinos and mobilization by political parties.

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