November 07, 2016

Asian Americans are part of the most diverse electorate in American history

Washington, DC — As millions of Americans turn to early voting, breaking previous records, it is clear that immigrant voters—including Latinos and Asian Americans—are a key part of the early voting story (see reports from PoliticsUSAand Fortune). Immigrants and immigration have been a key part of the presidential election, as our Spring 2016 survey indicates that Asian American voters are rejecting candidates with anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim views.

After the 2012 presidential election, Republicans and Democrats predicted that communities of color (including Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders) would be critically important for the future of American elections, with important investments needed in voter education and voter outreach.

Now, four years later, high levels of voter interest and turnout among communities of color are making good on those predictions. In addition to partisan investments in voter outreach, efforts by nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations are also making the difference. APIAVote offers the following data points, background information, and media contacts for reporters interested in understanding this vitally important constituency.

Demographics of the Asian American Vote

Asian American voter concerns and preferences

  • The National Asian American Survey has a survey report and infographics related to AAPI Voter preferences on issues and candidates heading into the general election
  • The economy, terrorism, and racism are top concerns for AAPI voters
  • AAPI voters hold progressive views on issues ranging from the Affordable Care Act to environmental protection and racial justice

AAPI nonprofits have stepped up their efforts to register, educate, and mobilize

  • In 2016, close to 600 organizations participated in voter registration efforts specifically targeting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders
  • Over 32 APIAVote partners participated in 2016 voter registration efforts and continue to be involved in nonpartisan voter education and voter turnout
  • Thanks to these and other efforts, researchers at AAPI Data expect nearly 5 million Asian American and Pacific Islander voters in 2016, up from 3.9 million in 2012

About Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote

Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote is a national nonpartisan organization that works with partners to mobilize Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in electoral and civic participation. We envision a world that is inclusive, fair, and collaborative, and where Asian Americans and Pacific Islander communities are self-determined, empowered, and engaged.



Christine Chen 
Executive Director, APIAVote
For information on nonpartisan voter registration, voter education, turnout efforts, and contacts with organizational partners in key states like Nevada, Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, and North Carolina

Karthick Ramakrishnan
Director of AAPI Data and National Asian American Survey
For information on voter demographics, past voter surveys, and interpretation of exit poll results

Janelle Wong 
Professor at University of Maryland and APIAVote Research Fellow 
For information on the effectiveness of voter mobilization efforts and interpretation of exit poll results