<html> <head><style type ="text/css">body { font-family: "Bloomberg Prop Unicode I", Verdana, sans-serif; font-size:125%; letter-spacing: -0.3pt; color: #FF9F0F; background-color: #000000; text-align: left; } p {line-height: 1.25em; max-width:900px; width:expression(document.body.clientWidth > 900? "900px": "auto" );} h1, h2, h3 { text-align: left; font-weight: normal; color: #FFFFFF; } h1 { font-size: 130%; } h2 { font-size: 115%; } h3 { font-size: 100%; } #bb-style { font-size: 90%; max-width:900px; width:expression(document.body.clientWidth > 900? "900px": "auto" ); } b, strong { font-weight: bold; } i, em { color: #FEC54A; } pre { font-family: "Andale Mono", "Monaco", "Lucida Console"; letter-spacing: -0.3pt; line-height: 1.25em; } table { border: 0; font-size: 90%; width: 100%; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; } td, tr { text-align: left; } td.numeric { text-align: right; } a:link { color:#53B2F5; text-decoration: none; } a:visited {color:#53B2F5} a:active {color:#53B2F5} a:hover {color:#53B2F5} </style> </head> <body> <p>By Albert R. Hunt</p> <p>The fastest-growing U.S. demographic group is highly educated, relatively affluent and, politically, increasingly Democratic.</p> <p>That's Asian-Americans, who comprised 3 percent of this year's electorate, a share that will keep growing. They voted almost three to one for President Barack Obama, according to the exit poll. Yet unlike African Americans or <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-18/republicans-hispanic-problem-is-with-party-base.html">Latinos</a>, Asian Americans are more highly educated -- half have at least bachelor's degrees -- and are more affluent than whites.</p> <p>Why then did they <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-08/asian-voters-send-a-message-to-republicans.html">support</a> the more liberal party?</p> <p>James Lai, a professor of political science at Santa Clara University, offers several explanations for this trend in favor the Democrats in recent presidential contests.</p> <p>Although polls show immigration isn't a top concern for Asian-Americans, he believes it may be a threshold test: Candidates who are seen as anti-immigration are disqualified from consideration. In 2010, Asian-Americans accounted for more than one-third of all new immigrants to the U.S.</p> <p>Lai says he suspects that Mitt Romney's anti-China rhetoric during the campaign also may have affected some Chinese-Americans, who are the single largest Asian-American bloc, followed closely by Filipinos.</p> <p>In addition, he says that many Asian-Americans identify more with the values of fairness and opportunity articulated by Obama in the election. "Most Asian-Americans identify with the middle class," says Lai, who has written a book on Asian-Americans and politics.  </p> <p>He says it’s a mistake to stereotype Asian-Americans, who represent at least 25 different ethnicities, as a monolithic group.</p> <p>The political influence of Asian-American voters is spreading geographically, no longer concentrated on the West Coast. States such as Virginia, North Carolina and Florida have growing populations that are flexing their muscle.</p> <p>(Albert R. Hunt is Washington editor at Bloomberg News and a Bloomberg View columnist. Follow him on <a href="https://twitter.com/AlHuntDC">Twitter</a>.)</p> <p>Read more breaking commentary from Bloomberg View columnists and editors at the <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/view/the-ticker/">Ticker</a>.</p> <p><br class="spacer_"></p> <p><br class="spacer_"></p> </body> </html>