TUCSON, ARIZ. - Hispanics make up a huge slice of Arizona voters. Arizona Republicans say they’re putting together a statewide push to convince Hispanics to vote Republican, but Democrats will not give up that group without a fight.
The U.S. Census says Hispanics account for almost 27 percent of eligible Arizona voters.
Republicans say Democrats have taken Hispanic votes for granted and they are in a statewide push to win over that crucial group.
Arizona Republicans have set up this Hispanic outreach office in Tucson, and outreach offices in Phoenix and Yuma.
Lea Marquez Peterson led the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Now, she’s to keep the seat the Governor appointed her to on the Corporation Commission.
She says no party can assume it has a lock on the Hispanic vote.
“So many of my family was mixed, some non political, some Democrats and independents and some Republicans and I think that's probably your representative of the Latino community, culturally, we've been brought up through the generations or Grandpa might have been a Democrat, mom and dad are, then automatically people go that direction. What is the difference for me is I come from an entrepreneurial family or it's a small business ownership in the blood many generations, and I really felt that embodies the Republican principles.”
Marquez Peterson says that message of economic entrepreneurship should appeal to Hispanic voters.
Democrats agree Hispanics are not a single minded voting block any party can take for granted. They say economics is important to their appeal too.
Pima Democratic Chair Alison Jones says, “Well, you know, we stand for a number of things, jobs, fair wages, family values. I know the other party says they stand for the same thing but I think we're walking the walk.”
Now each side has to work to win over those crucial voters and they don’t have much time to do it. Mail ballots go out in about six weeks. Election day is 10 weeks away.