American minorities may speak with their votes come Election Day, but during the campaign season, many chose not to speak with their dollar. An analysis conducted by the Associated Press uncovered that the vast majority of sizable donations towards either campaign came from wealthy white neighborhoods. Though minorities and specifically Latino voters may be a deciding demographic in the presidential race, they do not represent a significant portion of donations.
Donations of $3 million or more brought in $1.3 billion to campaigns this season, but only 4 percent of those donations came from majority Hispanic neighborhoods. Pre-dominantly white neighborhoods accounted for over 90 percent of the larger donations.
“The hardest part is the economic sacrifice,” Roland Garcia, director of the Texas Future Fund told the Huffington Post. “Latino families are busy trying to make ends meet.”
Representing 16 percent of the U.S. population, Hispanics are the largest minority group, especially in the election’s vital swing states. Both candidates have targeted Latino voters during their campaign, with immigration standing as a major topic throughout the race.
“The most important voice is the vote, and financial contributions come in second,” Arturo Vargas, director of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, said of the trend among Hispanics. “Not being a major source of financial contributions and not having a tradition of contributing to candidates complicates our development as a political community. Even if the candidates deny it, the reality is that donors are those who enjoy the best access to candidates.”
The data that the AP analyzed does not have exact demographic information, so by using the donor addresses, the AP determined whether or not the neighborhoods were Hispanic or otherwise. Though Latino neighborhoods only accounted for 3.5 percent of the donations, majority black neighborhoods gave even less, listed at 2.7 percent.