The rising Asian-American presence in US politics

In a recent episode of his show Patriot Act, Hasan Minhaj looked at the increased role that Asian-Americans are playing in US politics along with their rise in numbers, and that this demographic has been a key factor in changing some congressional districts from Republican to Democratic and that they could play a significant role in the 2020 elections. He says that Andrew Yang’s candidacy is one sign of this. He also talked with Cory Booker who has apparently had a lot of success reaching out to the Asian-American bloc.

But against this is the fact that their views are not homogeneous and indeed a large number of Indian-Americans have supported the Modi-Trump rightwing nationalistic program. One thing that surprised me was Minhaj pointing out that Asian-Americans tend to be below average in voter registration and actual voting.

Minhaj also traced the history of immigration laws such as the notorious Chinese exclusion act of 1882 and the 1924 law that largely shut down immigration from non-white countries before it was changed in 1965 following passage of the Civil Rights Act.

You can see the full show.


  1. Lassi Hippeläinen says

    “…a large number of Indian-Americans have supported the Modi-Trump rightwing nationalistic program.”
    Of course. The families who can educate their kids and send them to the US come from the upper social classes.

  2. says

    People in Taiwan are annoyed with Minhaj’s unspoken but visible kowtowing to China. He deliberately did not listing Taiwan as a separate country or ethnicity.

    Politically, people call themselves Taiwanese, but it’s more complex than that. The ethnic Taiwanese and Hakkanese are as distinct from Mandarin people as Cantonese or Fujian. And even those who are ethnically Chinese no longer want any form of reunification and call themselves Taiwanese.

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