NEW AMERICANS IN THE OLD DOMINION:
Virginia’s Immigrants, Latinos, and Asians are a Political and Economic Powerhouse
June 16, 2009
Washington D.C. – The Immigration Policy Center has compiled research which shows that immigrants, Latinos, and Asians not only wield tremendous political power in Virginia, but are also an integral part of Virginia’s economy and tax base. As workers, taxpayers, consumers, and entrepreneurs, immigrants and their children are an economic powerhouse. As voters, they are a potent political force. Yet anti-immigrant groups are exaggerating the alleged fiscal “costs” imposed by undocumented immigrants, and are completely discounting the many economic benefits which immigrants, Latinos, and Asians bring to the Old Dominion.
Highlights of the research include:
Immigrants make up about 10% of Virginia’s total population and nearly half of them are naturalized citizens who are eligible to vote.
New Americans (naturalized U.S. citizens and their U.S.-born children) represent 6.4% of the voting population.
The purchasing power of Virginia’s Latinos totaled $13.5 billion in 2008 and Asian buying power totaled $14.7 billion.
Asian-owned businesses in the state generated sales and receipts worth more than $7.7 billion annually and Latino-owned businesses generated $3.4 billion in 2002.
Virginia’s undocumented population earned between $2.6 and $3.1 billion in 2007, and paid between $260 and $311 million in state income, excise, property, Social Security, and Medicare taxes.
There is no denying the contributions immigrants make and the important role they play in Virginia’s political and economic future. Virginia’s budget deficit was not created by immigrants and it won’t be filled by attacking them. For more data on the contributions of immigrants, Latinos, and Asians to Virginia’s economy, view the IPC fact sheet in its entirety.