Asian-American exit poll in 3 states shows varied opinions

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Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund logo, (Photo: aaldef.org)

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education 3Fund (AALDEF) released preliminary results of its nonpartisan exit poll of more than 500 Asian American voters in the Nov. 5, 2019 elections in Virginia, Texas, and Pennsylvania.

In Virginia, a state that turned Blue from Red, giving Democrats majorities in the State House and Senate as well as the Governor’s mansion, Asian Americans strongly favored Democratic candidates in close races.

Two Indian-Americans won seats, one in the House (Suhas Subramanyam) and another in the Senate (Ghazala Hashmi).

Asian-Americans supported stricter gun control laws in all three states.

“The Asian American Exit Poll provides an important snapshot of the growing Asian American electorate, including their party affiliations and issues influencing their votes in key races,” AALDEF executive director Margaret Fung is quoted saying in a press release. “In 2019, Asian American voters were part of the unusually high turnout in Virginia that consolidated Democratic control of the state legislature,” Fung noted.

In the Nov. 5 elections, Democrats picked up two seats in the Virginia State Senate and six seats in the House of Delegates, winning majority control of both houses of the Virginia General Assembly– the first time since 1994.

When asked how they would vote if the presidential election were held on Tuesday (Nov. 5, 2019), Asian American voters polled favored Joe Biden, followed by Elizabeth Warren, as their top two Democratic choices for president.

On Election Day, AALDEF dispatched attorney, law students and community volunteers to seven cities in five states, to monitor voter problems and to conduct a nonpartisan Asian American exit poll in English and three Asian languages.

Asian Americans were polled in Fairfax County and Arlington County in Virginia; Houston, Texas; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Fairfax County has a significant population of South Asians, including Indian-Americans, as does Houston.

The organization also checked on voter problems and the availability of language assistance at poll sites during the early voting period in New York City, Boston, and Malden, Massachusetts.

The 2019 elections marked the first time in state history that New Yorkers had the option to vote early.

“In all three states, a large percentage of the Asian American voters polled were not enrolled in a political party,” noted AALDEF Democracy Program Director Jerry Vattamala.

“Asian Americans, now the nation’s fastest growing racial minority group, are registering to vote in larger numbers and could play a critical role in determining electoral outcomes in 2020,” Vattamala contended.

AALDEF logo. (Photo: aaldef.org)

The poll by AALDEF also showed Asian American voters faced barriers on Election Day, including denial of provisional ballots and access to language assistance, machine breakdowns, being directed to incorrect poll sites, and improper demands for proof of identification and citizenship when it was not required.

Poll sites in AALDEF’s exit poll were selected based on voter registration files, census data, interviews with local election officials and community leaders, and a history of voting problems.

The organization provided a preliminary breakdown of AALDEF exit poll results by state:

Virginia:

Party Affiliation 

Democrat: 51%, Republican: 10%, Not Enrolled: 38%, Other Party: 2%

Vote for House of Delegates:

Democratic Candidate: 80%, Republican Candidate: 16%, Other: 1%, Did Not Vote: 3%

Vote for State Senate:

Democratic Candidate: 81%, Republican Candidate: 15%, Did Not Vote: 4%

Vote for President if Election Were Today:

Joe Biden: 26%, Elizabeth Warren: 20%, Bernie Sanders: 15%, Donald Trump: 13%, Andrew Yang: 8%, Other Democrat: 7%, Other Party/Independent: 6%, Pete Buttigieg: 4%, Other Republican: 3%, Kamala Harris: 3%, Cory Booker: 0.4%, Beto O’Rourke: 0.4%

In general, do you support stricter gun control laws?

Strongly Support: 71%, Support: 20%, Don’t Know: 3%, Oppose: 3%, Strongly Oppose: 3%

Do you believe the U.S. House of Representatives should proceed with an impeachment inquiry of President Trump?

Yes: 64%, No: 17%, Don’t Know: 19%

Do you support legislation that would get Virginia to 100% renewable energy by 2050?

Yes: 82%, No: 4%, Don’t Know: 13%

Houston, Texas:

Party Affiliation 

Democrat: 33%, Republican: 30%, Not Enrolled: 36%, Other Party: 2%

Vote for Mayor:

Sylvester Turner: 36%, Tony Buzbee: 35%, Bill King: 15%, Other Candidate: 10%, Sue Lovell: 2%, Dwight Boykins: 1%

Vote for President if Election Were Today:

Donald Trump: 38%, Joe Biden: 15%, Elizabeth Warren: 12%, Andrew Yang: 9%, Other Republican: 6%, Bernie Sanders: 4%, Pete Buttigieg: 4%, Beto O’Rourke: 4%, Kamala Harris: 2%, Other Democrat: 2%, Other Party/Independent: 2%, Cory Booker: 1%,

In general, do you support stricter gun control laws?

Strongly Support: 58%, Support: 24%, Don’t Know: 7%, Oppose: 5%, Strongly Oppose: 6%

Do you believe the U.S. House of Representatives should proceed with an impeachment inquiry of President Trump?

Yes: 41%, No: 41%, Don’t Know: 18%

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania:

Party Affiliation

Democrat: 65%, Republican: 6%, Not Enrolled: 27%, Other Party: 2%

Vote for Mayor:

James Kenney: 74%, Billy Ciancaglini: 3%, Other Candidate: 11%, Did Not Vote: 11%

Vote for City Council at-large:

David Oh: 22%, Helen Gym: 18%, Allan Domb: 16%, Isaiah Thomas: 12%, Derek Green: 11%, Katherine Richardson: 10%, Other Candidate: 4%, Al Taubenberger: 2%, Daniel Tinney: 2%, Bill Heeney: 1%, Matt Wolfe: 1%

Vote for President if Election Were Today:

Joe Biden: 24%, Elizabeth Warren: 19%, Andrew Yang: 14%, Bernie Sanders: 12%, Pete Buttigieg: 10%, Donald Trump: 10%, Other Republican: 5%, Kamala Harris: 3%, Other Democrat: 2%, Other Party/Independent: 2%, Cory Booker: 0%, Beto O’Rourke: 0%

In general, do you support stricter gun control laws?

Strongly Support: 80%, Support: 13%, Don’t Know: 4%, Oppose: 1%, Strongly Oppose: 1%

Do you believe the U.S. House of Representatives should proceed with an impeachment inquiry of President Trump?

Yes: 68%, No: 7%, Don’t Know: 25%

 

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