Health, jobs, economy top concerns of older Asian American voters


Older Asian Americans will be a crucial voting bloc in 2020, says AARP.

Older Asian American voters consider health care (93%) as the most important election issue followed by jobs and the economy (89%), according to two national survey released by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP).

These age 50-plus Asian American voters are also very concerned about  the coronavirus pandemic, AARP said in a media release.

As these voters have experienced the pandemic’s social and emotional impact, health care has become increasingly important as a voting issue.

They have a sense of insecurity about the economy, their health, freedom from discrimination, elections, and voting.

At the beginning of the pandemic in March, 58% of Asian American voters 50-plus said that addressing the coronavirus was extremely or very important to them and their community.

By late summer and into fall, many were still concerned about the impacts of the pandemic.

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Seven out of ten (72%) Asian American voters 50-plus worry often about job loss and employment due to the covid-19 pandemic.

Nearly half (48%) worry often about not being able to receive access to health care. About 45% worry about experiencing hate crimes, harassment, and discrimination.

On issues that affect them personally or their community, Asian American voters 50-plus cited securing the future of Social Security (83%) and Medicare (78%) as extremely or very important to them.

So was lowering health care costs (78%) and prescription drug costs (77%), and having enough retirement savings (76%).

As many as 46% are concerned about election interference in 2020, while 40% worry about their health and safety at the polls.

Slightly more Asian American voters 50-plus plan to go to the polls in person, either early (14%) or on election day (37%), than those who plan to vote by mail or absentee ballot (46%).

Most survey participants (76%) receive information to help guide their voting decisions from media news outlets and talk shows, followed by candidate debates and town halls (50%).

“Voter turnout among adults 50-plus, including Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI), continues to outpace other age groups every election season,” said Daphne Kwok, Vice President of Multicultural Leadership for AAPI Audience Strategy at AARP.

“This will be a crucial voting bloc in 2020, and candidates need to address the issues that matter to them and their families in the closing stretch of the campaign.”

AARP said its analysis was based on 2020 Asian American Voter Survey (AAVS), conducted by AAPI Data on behalf of AARP, APIAVote and Asian Americans Advancing Justice-AAJC and National Survey of Older Voters During COVID-19: Asian Americans, conducted by the Harris Poll on behalf of AARP.

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