Poll shows Democrats losing strength with Asian Americans in key Senate battlegrounds

A group of women walk up Jackson Street in Chinatown past the new “AAPI Community Heroes” mural in San Francisco, Monday, May 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

A new poll shows Democrats losing support among Asian American and Pacific Islander voters in several Senate battleground states compared to 2020, when Joe Biden won more than 61 percent of the fast-growing electoral bloc.  

The poll commissioned by Civiqs for Justice Unites Us shows that Democrats may need to invest more resources to mobilize Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) voters who traditionally favor their party but are now concerned about the direction of the economy.  

The poll conducted from June 10 to June 14 show that AAPI voters favor Democrats 55 percent to 34 percent on the generic ballot but less so in the battleground states of Wisconsin, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Georgia.  

In those four states, Democrats lead Republicans on the generic ballot 53 percent to 43 percent.  

AAPI voters favored Biden 61 percent to 34 percent in 2020, according to exit polls. The drop in support reflects Biden’s falling job approval rating nationwide. Biden’s approval rating hit 39 percent in a recent USA TODAY-Suffolk poll.  

Aftab Pureval, the Democratic mayor of Cincinnati and co-chairman of Justice Unites Us, said Democrats need to start focusing on this demographic to avoid a drop-off in support in November.  

“If Democrats are going to win this November we must mobilize the AAPI community, and we must begin that work now,” he said in a statement.  

“While it’s clear that our party has lost ground due to the challenging electoral environment, there is still tremendous opportunity with AAPI voters if we invest in mobilizing and turnout. Our community is poised to once again play an outsized role in November as long as we do the work without delay,” he said.   

The poll showed that Asian American and Pacific Islander voters are most concerned about the cost of living, jobs and the economy, gun control and election integrity.  

Fifty-four percent of these voters in battleground state say voting rights and election integrity are one of the three most important issues influencing their votes. The rising cost of living and jobs and the economy are also cited as top issues.  

Americans of Asian American and Pacific Island heritage make up the fastest growing demographic in the country, comprising 8 percent of the population.  

An estimated 8.6 million Americans are of East Asian heritage such as Chinese, Korean and Japanese; an estimated 7.6 million are of Southeast Asian heritage including Filipino, Vietnamese and Cambodian; and 5.3 million are of South Asian heritage such as Indian and Pakistani.  

Tags AAPI Aftab Pureval Asian American and Pacific Islander Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders asian voters Joe Biden
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