Department of
Political Science


Barreto CV


Articles & Papers

Research Projects


101 Gowen Hall, Box 353530
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-3530
Fax: 206-685-2146
Ph: 206-569-4259

Matt A. Barreto
Professor of Political Science
Director, Washington Institute for the Study of Ethnicity & Race
Director, Center for Democracy and Voting Rights
Contact: mbarreto(at)
Office: Gowen Hall 148
Phone: 206-569-4259

Matt A. Barreto is Professor of political science at the University of Washington, Seattle and the director of the Washington Institute for the Study of Ethnicity and Race (WISER). He is also the director of the annual Washington Poll. He received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Irvine in 2005. His research examines the political participation of racial and ethnic minorities in the United States and his work has been published in the American Political Science Review, Political Research Quarterly, Social Science Quarterly, Public Opinion Quarterly, and other peer reviewed journals. He is the author of the book, Ethnic Cues: The role of shared ethnicity in Latino political behavior published by the University of Michigan Press in 2010, and has just finished a book manuscript co-authored with Prof. Christopher Parker, Change They Can't Believe In: the Tea Party and Reactionary Politics in America, to be published in 2013 with Princeton University Press.

Prof. Barreto has also conducted extensive research on voting rights, and has been an expert witness in numerous Voting Rights Act lawsuits. In 2012, he was qualified as an expert witness in Rodriguez v. Harris County, a Section 2 voting rights lawsuit regarding County Commission redistricting, where he provided a report and testimony on vote dilution and racially polarized voting with respect to Latino candidates. He also testified as an expert witness in the 2012 Pennsylvania voter identification lawsuit Applewhite v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, where his research with Prof. Gabriel Sanchez proved crucial to the voter ID law being put on hold. Barreto and Sanchez also provided an expert report in a lawsuit challenging the impact of the Wisconsin voter ID law on minority voters, and in 2012 the Wisconsin law was also put on hold. In 2011, Prof. Barreto was retained as the lead expert consultant for the State of California’s Citizen Redistricting Commission, and was specifically asked to advise the Commission on Section 2 and Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act and conduct research on polarized voting and vote dilution.

Prof. Barreto research focuses on minority and immigrant voting behavior, and teaches courses on Racial and Ethnic Politics, Latino Politics, the Voting Rights Act, Elections, Statistics, and American Politics at UW. Part of his research agenda also includes public opinion and election surveys, including exit polling methodology and pre-election polls. In addition to his work on the Hispanic/Latino population, Matt (with Prof. Karam Dana) implemented a large national survey of Muslim Americans, and are studying the influence of religiosity on political incorporation of American Muslims. Matt is also an affiliated faculty member in the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences (CSSS) at the Univesity of Washington. Beyond the UW, he has been an active member of the Politics of Race, Immigration and Ethnicity Consortium hosted by UC Riverside, and an affiliated research scholar with the Tomás Rivera Policy Institute (, and with the Center for the Study of Los Angeles ( In 2008, Barreto was a co-principal investigator (with Gary Segura) of the American National Election Study Latino oversample, which included the first ever Spanish language translation of the ANES and the first ever oversample of Latino voters. Since 2007, Barreto, along with Gary Segura has been a principal of Latino Decisions, a political polling firm surveying and analyzing the Latino vote, and has been invited multiple times to the White House to brief senior staff on Latino policy attitudes. In 2009, he was appointed to the ANES Board of Overseers. In 2012 Barreto served as an expert for the American Civil Liberties Union in two separate lawsuits against the Wisconsin and Pennsylvania Voter ID laws.

Matt is married, and has two young children, Daniel and Clara, and his wife Julie works as the UW School of Law Finance Director.

Department of Political Science