This is probably the biggest shift in Virginia. Until 1970, only 1 in 100 Virginians are born outside the U.S.; by 2012 1 in 9 Virginians are immigrants.
Immigrants, Latinos, and Asians constitute large and growing shares of the economy and electorate in Virginia. Immigrants (the foreign-born) account for 1 in 9 Virginians, and 50.3% of them are naturalized U.S. citizens who are eligible to vote. “New Americans” – immigrants and their children of immigrants – accounted for 10.8% of Virginia voters in 2012.
Immigrants not only essential to the state’s economy as workers, but also accounts for hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue and consumer purchasing power.
Moreover, Latinos and Asians (both foreign and native-born) wield more than $45.9 billion in consumer purchasing power, and the businesses they own had sales receipts of $19.1 billion and employed 126,000 people at last count.
Immigrant, Latino, and Asian workers and entrepreneurs are integral to Virginia’s economy and tax base – they are an electoral force with which every politician must reckon.
Read more: the New Americans in Virginia