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The New Electoral Landscape and What It Means for Immigration Reform

IPC has compiled this one-stop analysis of all the available data on the Asian, Latino and New American vote and shows how and why they voted the way they did in the 2008 election cycle. The report features a variety of early, exit and election-day polling which tells the story of not only a record rate turnout, but also provides insight into the greatest areas of concern for these voters. It also explores early signals from the new administration and congress with respect to immigration reform.

The 2008 elections clearly demonstrated the growing power of the Latino, Asian, and immigrant vote. Not only did these groups turn out in record numbers, they also overwhelmingly rejected anti-immigrant politicians who attempted to use immigration as a wedge issue through hateful campaign rhetoric that is quickly becoming an unhealthy trademark of the Republican Party.

The following report illustrates the growing electoral clout of Latinos, Asians, and New Americans; provides data on how and why they voted; and demonstrates that immigration was an issue that motivated them to the polls.  Election results from races in which immigration was a hot issue show that immigrant-bashing did not work as a campaign strategy.  The report also provides evidence that a majority of all voters favor comprehensive immigration reform, and details early signs from the incoming administration and Congress that point to a new direction in immigration policy.

Politicians of all stripes would be wise to listen to the voices of ethnic and New American voters and not take them for granted. The analysis provided in the following pages points to the strength and growth of what may be the most important voting bloc in 21st century politics—one that now has the power profoundly to change American elections in the years to come.

Published On: Thu, Dec 04, 2008 | Download File

Latino New American Voters Wield Influence in New States: Immigrant Latinos Top Native-Born Latinos in Preference for Obama

Latinos weren't the only group that flexed its muscles this past Election Day. New Americans--naturalized citizens and the U.S.-born children of immigrants who were born during the current era of immigration that began in 1965--make up another important demographic group that demonstrated its ability to swing an election.

Published On: Wed, Nov 12, 2008 | Download File

IPC Report Reveals the Growing Political Power of Immigrants and Their Children

Examines the growing electoral clout of New Americans: naturalized immigrants and the U.S.-born children of immigrants raised during the current era of immigration that began in 1965.

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Published On: Mon, Nov 03, 2008 | Download File

The New American Electorate (October 2008)

At a time when federal, state, and local elections are often decided by small voting margins—with candidates frequently locked in ferocious competition for the ballots of those “voting blocs” that might turn the electoral tide in their favor—one large and growing bloc of voters has been consistently overlooked and politically
underestimated: New Americans.

 

 

 

 

Download the Report

Download the Powerpoint

Read Supplement #1 (Voting-Age Adult Citizens by Nativity and State/Congressional District, 2007)

Read Supplement #2 (Voting-Age Adult Citizens by Race/Ethnicity and State/Congressional District, 2007)

Read the 2008 Election Recap

 

Published On: Thu, Oct 23, 2008 | Download File

Balancing Federal, State, and Local Priorities in Police-Immigrant Relations

Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, changes in federal, state, and local law-enforcement priorities and practices have had a profound impact on America’s Muslims, Arabs, and South Asians.  Some of these policy shifts applied exclusively or primarily to those communities, such as the federal “special registration” program, selective enforcement of immigration laws based on national origin or religion, and expanded federal counter-terrorism efforts that targeted these communities.  At the same time, a wide range of ethnic groups have been affected by the use of state and local police agencies to enforce federal immigration law, and the aggressive use of detention and deportation authority for even minor infractions and technicalities.

Across the United States, police departments and Muslim, Arab, and South Asian communities have responded with varied approaches to the new post-September 11 reality.  In some cities, serious tensions between law-enforcement agencies and immigrant communities have arisen.  Other cities have taken steps to alleviate these tensions and promote dialogue and cooperation with immigrant communities.  This report evaluates the challenges and successes of recent trust-building efforts between immigrant communities and local police departments, and the responses of each to new and proposed policies that threaten those efforts.  Using the experiences of Muslim, Arab, and South Asian communities, the report offers insights that apply to much broader populations.  It draws attention to best practices and policy solutions such as the creation of more effective channels for public dialogue and communication, public education campaigns, officer training and recruiting programs, and forms of cooperation between police and community organizations.

Published On: Tue, Jun 24, 2008 | Download File

ELECTION 2008: The Importance of Latinos and Immigrants to the Economies and Electorates of the "Super Tuesday" States

During the presidential primaries, candidates and the media focused a great deal of attention on the debate over how immigrants impact state economies and the fiscal balance of state treasuries. At the same time, political pundits and pollsters speculated on the electoral influence of immigrants and Latinos at the voting booth.  Below is a brief analysis of the impact that both Latinos and immigrants have on the economies and electorates of the “Super Tuesday” states.

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Published On: Mon, May 05, 2008 | Download File

Does the "SAVE Act" Save Anything? The Real Price of "SAVE"

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) recently released an estimate of the costs of the “Secure America Through Verification and Enforcement Act” (“SAVE Act,” HR 4088), and concluded that the “SAVE Act” would decrease federal revenues, increase government spending, and create an unfunded mandate for states and private employers.

Published On: Thu, Apr 17, 2008 | Download File

Immigration as a Wedge Issue:Little Payoff; Big Opportunity Cost

This document addresses how the issue of immigration is being addressed by candidates, and what impact it has had on elections.

Published On: Tue, Mar 04, 2008 | Download File

Less Rhetoric and More Substance on Immigration

Anyone who has been keeping close tabs on the immigration debate in Washington over the last five years can attest to the fact that it has all of the ingredients for the perfect political storm. For starters, U.S. immigration laws are so arcane that only a handful of legislators truly understand them. As a result, many policy makers search for simple, sound-bite driven solutions to problems that are far too complex for quick fixes. The complexity of the issue is made even more difficult by the fact that the immigration issue is not easily defined by party labels. Supporters and opponents of various immigration proposals come from both parties and span the political spectrum. This makes it difficult for party leaders to determine where, when, and how to discuss the issue. Finally, and perhaps most destructively, the topic of immigration evokes intense emotions that are easily stirred by politicians and pundits who play to the fears and insecurities of the electorate rather than deal with the issue honestly and pragmatically. It is the emotional nature of the debate that really has whipped the political winds into a fury over the last five years.

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Published On: Wed, Nov 01, 2006 | Download File

Undocumented Immigration by Congressional Districts

In this IPC Policy Brief, author Rob Paral uses new census data to update his earlier IPC report (Playing Politics on Immigration: Congress Favors Image over Substance in Passing H.R. 4437) on the number of undocumented immigrants in U.S. congressional districts.

Published On: Sun, Oct 01, 2006 | Download File