A growing, motivated population

Trieu attributed candidates’ lack of outreach and representation to the longstanding idea that AAPI voters are apathetic. But she pointed out that almost two-thirds of AAPI Texans are “highly motivated” to vote this year, based on her organization’s report. And while this is still a lower rate than the general Texan population’s motivation level, the state has also been seeing major growth in Asian votes in recent years, including a 71% jump — or a gain of 101,000 ballots cast — between 2016 and 2020.

On the other hand, Huang noted that AAPI Texans — despite their growth — still make up only a small part of the state population. According to nonprofit AAPI Data, such voters command just under 5% of the electorate in Texas this year.

“From a cost-benefit analysis, that might be the reason why politicians don’t seem to really want to spend a disproportionate amount of resources trying to reach a relatively small number of voters,” he said.

Common interests