Tags: | Asian-American | voters | midterm elections | Republicans

Republicans Court Asian-American Voters

By    |   Thursday, 30 Oct 2014 11:57 AM

With most of the media attention focused on the impact of Latinos and African-Americans in the 2014 midterms, Republicans are hoping their courtship of Asian-Americans will make a difference in key races.

In California's 52nd Congressional district, for example, 18 percent of voters are of Asian descent, which is one reason why Republican candidate Carl DeMaio has actively courted their vote.

"I'm challenging my own party to become more inclusive and reach out to the Asian-American community," said DeMaio after receiving the endorsement of San Diego Asian Americans for Equality, according to a campaign press release.

In Virginia, Republican congressional candidate Barbara Comstock has actively courted Asian-Americans by attending nearly two dozen Asian-themed events since May, The Wall Street Journal reports.

In Virginia, the Asian population statewide increased 68 percent from 2000 to 2010 and currently comprises 5 percent of the state's population, reports North Country Public Radio.

Their influence is not lost on the national Republican Party, which has 10 field workers dedicated to Asian-American outreach, the Journal notes.

In more than 60 House districts across the country, including races in Georgia, Minnesota, Maryland, and California, Asian-Americans make up 8 percent or more of the voting-age population, according to Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC), which recently released a survey of the Asian-American voters.

"The Asian-American electorate is growing rapidly and is already a significant presence in many states and Congressional districts," said Karthick Ramakrishnan, director of AAPI Data.

The poll released by AAJC and Asian Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote) on Oct. 7 found that up to 77 percent of registered Asian voters intend to vote next week.

The poll also noted that Asian-Americans, the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, are not tied to either political party. Almost half (46 percent) are not affiliated with a political party, compared to 37 percent that are Democrat and 17 percent that are Republican.

While they are not affiliated, Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders have shifted to the Democratic Party since President George H.W. Bush won 55 percent of the Asian vote in 1992. In 2008, Barack Obama earned 62 percent of the Asian vote and in 2012, he increased his support, winning 73 percent of the Asian-American vote.

"This growing base of Asian-American voters remain mostly undecided," said Christine Chen, executive director of APIAVote.

"As many as 64 percent of those surveyed believe politicians don’t care much about what they think," Chen says, adding that polling "indicates what they should already know these votes are up for grabs."

Earlier this summer, attorney Thomas Britt and business executive John Ying, launched the Asian Republican Coalition, a non-profit focused on building support for Republicans within the Asian communities, reported the Daily Caller.

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With most of the media attention focused on the impact of Latinos and African-Americans in the 2014 midterms, Republicans are hoping their courtship of Asian-Americans will make a difference in key races.
Asian-American, voters, midterm elections, Republicans
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2014-57-30
Thursday, 30 Oct 2014 11:57 AM
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