Asian Voter Turnout
As the political climate within the United States becomes more and more unstable, it is important, now more than ever, to increase voter turnout. In recent years, less than half of eligible Asian voters have shown up to the polls. Since 1996, Asian Americans have reported the second-lowest voter turnout among all major ethnic groups. Though it has increased, total turnout averages between 25 and 35 percent. More importantly, Asian American voters under the age of 25, our youth, have the lowest turnout rate.
Putting aside political differences and opinions, this upcoming election within the U.S. will determine how our nation proceeds with programs to combat COVID-19, healthcare, immigration rights, and so much more. Regardless of personal views on each issue, it is vital that we increase the number of Asian voters, especially those within our youth, and we are running out of time to do so. The lack of Asian representation within political, economic, and social discussions cannot continue; it is up to us to put in the effort and make a change. We have 18 days until the 2020 election and it’s time to make them count.
Whether or not you are 18+ and eligible to vote, there are many things you can do within your community. Voter registration starts at 16 - go out and register with your friends! Encourage your older peers, friends, and family to vote if they do not already, and emphasize how important this election is. Our voices as Asian Americans deserve to be heard, and our political opinions matter.
To start, Asian Youth for Civic Engagement is an excellent resource for Asian American youth to learn more about politics and become more civically engaged. If you or someone you know wants to register, the U.S Election Assistance Commission website is a great resource to select your state and figure out what you need to do to register. Additionally, now is a time to get creative! There are so many ways we can utilize our creativity to encourage those around us to go out and vote: make a drawing, an animation, write a poem, sing, perform, etc. We have the potential to inspire others, and by all means, we should use it!
As we continue to count down the days until the election, we must keep ourselves educated. Research the candidates, learn the facts. Do what you can to stay engaged. If you can vote, go out and do so, because your vote matters. Our right to vote is one of our key freedoms, and as Asian Americans, it is our right to make our voices heard.
Written by Nina Greenberg and edited by Aditi Patel