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Abstract

After Latino-Americans demonstrated their power in the 2012 presidential election, securing increased minority support at the polls has become a major goal for both main U.S. political parties. A reliable bloc of Latino voters on one’s side could mean more wins, but Latinos have a low voter turnout rate. This paper explores how to increase Latino turnout and argues that the use of the Spanish language in electoral advertising will have a positive effect. By comparing statewide Latino turnout data during the 2002 midterm elections, I find states with a sizable amount of Spanish-language get-out-the-vote messages do see slightly increased rates of Latino voter turnout, suggesting Spanish-language advertising could be a useful supplemental tool in future political campaigns.

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