CHICAGO - With news that Republican gubernatorial candidate Dan Rutherford is likely to announce Korean-American Steve Kim as his lieutenant governor this week, it would appear the State Treasurer is hoping to pick up votes in the Asian-American community in minority Illinois.
Fact is, there are almost 600,000 Asian-Americans in Illinois, comprising 5% of the state’s population, and 4.6% of Illinois' voting population. The breakdown by county is as follows:
- Illinois’ Asian-American voting population grew from about 200,000 to 440,000 from 2004 to 2006, now comprising 4.6% of Illinois’ voting population.
- In Chicago’s Cook County, there are 234,156 Asian-American voters, making up 6% of the county’s vote.
- AAPI voters can make a significant impact in local and national elections, and the number of AAPI elected officials is on the rise.
- In 9 of the counties in Illinois, Asian-Americans make up at least 2% of the population. In Cook County, the largest county in Illinois, over 6% of the population is Asian-American with 234,156 eligible voters.
- 71% of Asian-Americans in Illinois are citizens.
- 52% of Asian-American citizens are naturalized, and 28.9% of Illinois residents have yet to become citizens.
A 2006 survey showed Asian Americans hold an above average per capita income, but were still $3000 less than non-Hispanic whites in Illinois: