A new poll has found that Asian-Americans turned out heavily for President Barack Obama in November’s general election.
Volunteers talked with Asian-American voters outside polling places in 14 states, including Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
In Pennsylvania, just 9 percent of Asian Americans voted for Mitt Romney. In New Jersey, there was a little more support for the GOP candidate, just over 20 percent.
The results demonstrate a shift among Asian-American voters, says Glenn Magpantay of the Asian American Legal Defense Fund, which organized the poll.
“A majority of Asian-Americans enrolled in the Democratic Party,” he said. “When I started this work 14 years ago, these numbers were really different. They tended to be much more Republican.”
Just over a quarter of the respondents had just voted for the first time. Magpantay says this reflects changing patterns of immigration in the numbers of young voters.
Vietnamese-Americans have been in the U.S. in large number for a long time, and tend to vote for conservatives. Just 44 percent cast their ballots for Obama in November, nationally.
A growing population of South Asians are voting Democratic. Speaking to this trend, 96 percent of Bangladeshi-Americans voted for the president’s re-election.
Asian-Americans polled strongly for U.S. Sen. Bob Casey in Pennsylvania (76 percent) and for U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez in New Jersey (76 percent).
The election was heralded by many as a landmark for minority participation in American politics and fuel for another go in Washington at a comprehensive immigration reform bill.
The majority of poll respondents support immigration reform that would include a path to citizenship for people in the country illegally.