Source: The Washington Post
California is a pretty “blue” state, so the likelihood of the state going for McCain is pretty slim, so Asian Americans don’t necessarily can swing the fate of the election. However, Virginia is becoming quite the battleground state – and Asian Americans make up 4.8% of Virginians. The Washington Post describes the excitement in “Asian Americans Feeling the Power – Ethnic Groups See Opportunity to Affect Outcome of Presidential Race in Va.“:
“There are more than 160,000 Asian American citizens of voting age in the state, and an aggressive registration drive is adding several thousand voters. Partisan activists and public interest groups said Asian Americans could play as important a role in this national election as they did in the 2006 Senate race in Virginia, when they helped Democrat James Webb, a Vietnam war veteran, defeat incumbent George Allen… In Virginia, for example, the Hispanic populace, at more than 250,000, outnumbers Asian Americans. But most Hispanic residents are relative newcomers and a minority are U.S. citizens. By contrast, more than half of Asian American residents in the state are U.S. citizens of voting age. African Americans are by far Virginia’s largest minority group. In 2006, blacks accounted for 19.9 percent of the state population; Hispanics, 6.3 percent; and Asian Americans, 4.8 percent.”
Asian American activist S.R. Sidarth, an Indian-American, was a tracker videotaping Senator George Allen’s campaign event that captured Allen pointing to Sidarth and calling him a racial epithet, “macaca” – which spread like wildfire on the Internet and media, helping Democrat Jim Webb to defeat George Allen! As I had blogged and someone dismissed my comment, one Asian American can make a difference. And Asian Americans can help swing the election for Obama or McCain in Virginia, which could tip the election for either of them!