A new analysis by the Field Poll shows that even as California's total voter registration grew by more than 2 million voters over the past 20 years, Republican registration declined by 285,944 voters, to 5.3 million.
The party's share of statewide registration declined eight percentage points, to 31 percent.
Meanwhile, the proportion of registered voters who are Latino grew by about 2.3 million, from 10 percent of the state's registered voters in 1992 to 22 percent today, according to the poll. In the 2008 presidential election, those Latinos provided Democrats an advantage of more than nine percentage points.
"No one's talking about the sleeping giant anymore," said Jaime Regalado, executive director of the Pat Brown Institute of Public Affairs at California State University, Los Angeles. "The giant is here now, and Republicans aren't recruiting it."
Got that? While California gained 2 million new voters over the past 20 years, GOP registration has dropped by over a quarter million. And the driving force? Demographic changes that dramatically favor Democrats.
Thing is, those demographic changes don't have to favor Democrats. Fast growing Latino and Asian communities may be heavily Democratic, but they're also fairly socially conservative. Republicans could reach a significant number of these voters by appealing to religion and/or their sense of "traditional" family. But Republicans have decided instead to scapegoat immigrant communities to bolster their share of the dwindling anglo vote.
In California, it's relegated them to deep-minority status. If you believe the census' projections, the rest of the country is only a few decades behind.