Asian Americans Advancing Justice - LA

Building upon the legacy of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center

Asian American Voters Backed Clinton Over Trump by Wide Margins and Across Ethnic Groups

Monday, November 14th 2016

View more infographics about the data. 

Contrary to mainstream exit poll results, the 2016 national Asian American Election Eve Poll reveals that Asian Americans voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump by wide margins (75% to 19%), well above the 47.7% support she garnered in the general national electorate.  Ethnically, Asian American support for Clinton was as follows: Chinese (69%), Filipino (78%), Indian (87%), Korean (65%), Vietnamese (74%), and Japanese (64%).

The 2016 national Asian American Election Eve Poll surveyed 2,391 respondents from diverse Asian ethnic groups: Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Korean, Vietnamese, and Japanese. Interviews were conducted in five languages, with all interviews completed in the language of preference of the respondents. The survey was sponsored by the AAPI Civic Engagement Fund, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, and the National Education Association (NEA). 

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the fastest-growing racial group in the U.S., with a population of more than 21 million, and AAPIs are a growing electorate that is increasingly influential yet often ignored. By 2040, one in every ten Americans will be AAPI, and the number of voters will double to 12 million. The voting-age population of AAPIs already exceeds 10% in seven states, including California.

Advancing Justice-LA estimates that as of the November 2016 election, there were 1.8 million Asian American voters registered in the state (up more than 150,000 since 2012), including 502,000 Chinese Americans, 410,000 Filipino Americans, 271,000 Vietnamese Americans, 188,000 Indian Americans, 150,000 Korean Americans, and 117,000 Japanese Americans.

Some highlights from the 2016 Asian American Election Eve Poll:

  • At the national level, 56% of Asian Americans now identify as Democrats, a marked jump from 49% in the same poll four years ago.
  • In California, Asian American support for Clinton was higher than her national support, with 79% of Asian Americans supporting Clinton versus 13% for Trump.  High numbers of Asian Americans in the state reported that Trump made them angry (72%) and afraid (64%). 
  • The poll highlights the pressing need for more Asian American voter outreach and civic engagement, as the community is too often overlooked by campaigns, political parties, and civic organizations alike. The survey found that an incredible 57% of Asian American voters were not asked by any campaign, political party or organization to vote or to register to vote – and 84% of those who were reached were contacted in English.

The full results of the 2016 Asian American Election Eve Poll are available online



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Our mission is to advocate for civil rights, provide legal services and education, and build coalitions to positively influence and impact Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders and to create a more equitable and harmonious society.