Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders crucial to Democrat success in Georgia
Asian American and Pacific Islanders are now a crucial segment to the Democratic base and are a key force that could help the Democrats win Georgia and turn the Senate blue.
CEO Tom Bonier from TargetSmart, a political data firm, said turnout amongst AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islanders) voters in Georgia increased 91 percent compared to the 2016 turnout, the most out of any group. Latino turnout grew by 72 percent, black voters 20 percent and white voters 16 percent, respectively.
Bonier said over 30 percent of Georgia AAPI voters were first-time voters. With over 238,000 AAPI eligible voters in the state of Georgia, there are many more people to turn out that can do more than enough to flip the scales in the Democrat's favor.
President-elect Joe Biden won the state of Georgia by about 12,000 votes. 12,000 people make up just .11 percent of the Georgia population, far less than the 4.7 percent AAPI voters make up of the eligible voting population.
Democrats, including former Presidential candidate Andrew Yang, have flown to Georgia to help get out the AAPI vote and the grassroots organization Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta has helped turnout voters by using different languages to better communicate.
"I had a little special translator's sash," first-time voter and volunteer Haisa Nguyen said via Newsy, "and so I would help translate any of the stuff that they needed. A lot of them just didn't know where to go because like a lot of the signs, they are all in English."
Yang's recent presidential campaign and the focused efforts to turn AAPI voters out have paid massive dividends for the Democratic party not only in Georgia but around the country.
In the 13 most contested battleground states in the 2020 election, AAPI early and absentee voting rose by almost 300 percent from 2016, the most of any racial group, per NBC news. The one million early ballots cast beat out the total 2016 turnout by 21 percent.
Asian American and Pacific Islander voters have made their voices heard in races all around the country, especially in Georgia, and have become a crucial voting block that can help turn the Senate blue and get America back on track.
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Ryan is a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill majoring in Business Journalism. He has written in the past for SB Nation's Silver and Black Pride, USA Today Sports Media Group, North Carolina Business News Wire, the Daily Tar Heel, and has worked with Ice Cube's BIG3 basketball league.