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Biden/Harris Win White House as Diverse New American Voter Electorate Exercises Powerful Voice

WASHINGTON – New American voters had a massive impact on the 2020 election, exercising a powerful electoral voice in many politically important states across the country like Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Organizing efforts carried out nationwide by the immigrant and refugee rights movement have helped millions to naturalize and exercise their new rights as citizens. Today we celebrate our communities’ strong civic engagement and commitment to democracy and justice. The number of naturalized citizens, along with U.S.-born voters from Black and Brown communities, proved critical in determining the next president. 

“This election, we the people proved nothing will stop us from making our voices heard and our votes counted, despite the coronavirus that has left more than 230,000 of our loved ones dead and the country reeling from the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression,” said Nicole Melaku, NPNA executive director. “We turned out in record numbers to pick leaders who must care and govern for all of us. And now we will hold the incoming administration and Congress to account – to not merely tackle the crises the last administration created – but to make this a place where all of us can thrive.” 

Naturalized immigrants, some of whom voted in the United States for the first time, played a significant role in the outcome of the elections in politically important states like Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin.

According to the American Election Eve Poll, an Election Day exit poll that surveyed Latinos, Black, Asian American & Pacific Islanders (AAPI), American Indian, and white voters, 71 percent of naturalized Latino voters supported Biden in eleven key states (CA, NV, AZ, CO, TX, WI, MI, PA, NC, GA, FLA); 95 percent of all Black naturalized voters voted for Biden in nine key states (FL, GA, MI, NV, NC, OH, PA, TX, WI); and 67 percent of all naturalized AAPI supported Biden. According to the American Election Eve Poll, there is overwhelming support for creating a road to citizenship for those without immigration status; that support being 90 percent among Latinos, 90 percent among African Americans, 81 percent among the AAPI community, 85 percent among American Indians, and 81 percent among whites.

The election of Kamala Harris, in particular as a Black woman and a first-generation, new American of Jamaican and Southeast Asian immigrant heritage, is a significant moment in American history. Her story is the story of the American Dream and shatters the glass ceiling for so many women of color across the country as she steps up to serve as our next Vice President.

“We extend our sincerest congratulations to President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their hard fought victory. We especially would like to congratulate Kamala Harris for making history as the first woman and first person of color to be elected Vice President. Her story is not unlike so many new Americans who come to our nation in the hope of building a better life for their families and future generations. Representation matters – and MIRA looks forward to partnering with the Biden/Harris Administration to repair the harm of the past four years and build a more equitable and inclusive future,” said Eva Millona, CEO Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Coalition, NPNA Board of Director’s co-chair..

As the nation continues its COVID-19 response and recovery, inclusion and integration of immigrant communities is more critical than ever to our nation’s health and prosperity. Exit polls demonstrate that large majorities of Americans support immigration reform and reject the most vile policies of the Trump administration. Despite four years of federal mismanagement and malice, new Americans’ dreams are undeterred and moving forward with optimism for this next chapter. 

“Reaffirming our commitment to democracy where every vote was counted, is the prize in this election and we know the work ahead requires an even greater commitment to organizing, building coalitions, and engaging our allies,” said Melaku.