In divisive election year, Asian Americans early voter turnout at record level

New York: Asian Americans, including Indian Americans came out in large numbers to vote against Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, according to a report based on early voting trends.

Early vote analysis by TargetSmart indicate that Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) voters are responding against 70-year-old Trump and the Republicans by voting in record numbers, AAPI Victory Fund said on Tuesday.

In Nevada and North Carolina, the percent of AAPI voters is outpacing Hispanic voters, who are turning out in high numbers, the report said. In Nevada, AAPI early vote is 42.7 per cent of the
registered electorate and Hispanic vote is at 39.7 percent.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

In North Carolina, AAPI early vote is 37.7 percent versus 30.2 percent for Hispanics. The participation in the state is up 74 per cent in comparison to AAPI voter turnout in 2012,
the report said.

One of the critical investments made this cycle was providing AAPI ethnicity data about our fast-growing electorate, which more than doubled the number of people identified as AAPI in the voter file, it said.

"There will be many story lines out of this election and the most important to us is that our early investments in registering and turning out the AAPI community has paid precious dividends," said Shekar Narasimhan, chairman and founder of the AAPI Victory Fund.

"More than anything it shows that despite the lack of targeting of our communities by establishment political entities, our vote share toward Democrat candidates is creating an emerging AAPI voting block that has profound implications on this and future elections," he said.

"The miracle of our democracy is unfolding today as Asian Americans are voting in record numbers across the country and could provide a winning margin in states like Nevada and North Carolina to elect Hillary Clinton as our next president," said Dilawar Syed, co-founder and vice chair of the AAPI Victory Fund.

Syed said Trump and the Republicans debased immigrants and women and built their campaign on a platform of hate and fear against an entire faith with even denigrating an AAPI Gold Star family.
"It has not gone unnoticed. Our community is mobilised and poised to emerge as a powerful member of the winning coalition," he said.

Using the newly created voter file to target AAPI voters, the AAPI Victory Fund published a number of online viral informational videos, including "What Does Donald Trump Think About Asians," targeted at AAPIs in swing states.

With nearly a half million views on Facebook alone, it is the most widely viewed AAPI targeted election ad in history. A day earlier, the Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook credited Asian Americans as part of the "Clinton Coalition" of high early voter turnout.

"If Secretary Clinton does win this election... it will in part be because of enormous turnout... in the Asian American community," Mook said.

Updated Date: Nov 09, 2016 09:41 AM

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