Emory University political science Prof. Alan Abramowitz noticed something in Gallup's weekly assessment of President Obama's approval numbers: His approval among Hispanics has shot up by 14 points over the past two weeks. It's now at 68 percent -- the highest it has been this year, and at a level last seen in early 2013.
Here's how Hispanic approval has compared to the president's overall approval since February, according to Gallup.
You can see the recent spike, which began as rumors of an imminent announcement on immigration began -- and then were reported by Fox News.
Obama's approval had declined after he announced that he would postpone taking executive action until after the election was over. Earlier this year, Gallup noted that Hispanic approval had dropped fairly sharply after the 2012 elections. The trend over time looks like this:
At that point, Gallup's Frank Newport assessed why Hispanic approval peaked when it did.
This surge in Hispanic approval in and around the 2012 election likely reflects the Obama reelection campaign's attention to Hispanics and its focus on increasing Hispanic turnout in key battleground states. During his campaign, for example, Obama said he was confident that he would get immigration reform done over the next year. Immigration reform has not yet come to pass, suggesting that the disproportionate drop in Obama approval among Hispanics since the election reflects at least in part the failure of the president -- and Congress -- to enact these promised legislative changes.
And as a corollary: Enacting promised changes would result in precisely the spike we've seen.