2016 will set record highs for eligible voters within the minority community. Pew Research Center reports that the “70 million eligible voters that are racial or ethnic minorities” is the largest ever in terms of population total and percentage (31%). Although the non-Hispanic white population still outnumbers minorities, the rate of growth when compared to other ethnic groups lags considerably. “ As a result, the non-Hispanic white share of the electorate has fallen from 71% in 2012 to 69%.”
The numbers will continue to increase in favor of minorities. From 2012 to 2016, non-Hispanic whites accounted for 57% of eligible voters who turned 18. "By comparison, racial ethnic minorities accounted for 43% of new eligible voters born in the U.S. who turned 18.“ New Asian eligible voters are an anomaly, as their numbers increased primarily through naturalization (60% of new Asian voters between 2012 – 2016 were naturalized citizens), when compared to other minorities.
Despite these growth in numbers, eligible voters mean nothing, if the people don’t actually vote. Although non-Hispanic white and black voters tend to exercise their right to vote (over 60% for both ethnicities), less than half of eligible Hispanics and Asians turnout on election day. An increase in both, particularly Hispanics will be needed to create a more impactful electorate.