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A child plays while voters wait in line at the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in the Anacostia neighborhood of Washington
Brookings Now

WATCH: How minority voters could swing the 2016 presidential election

Alison Burke

As the conclusion of a contentious election grows near, the votes of minority populations—particularly black, Latino, and Asian Americans—are likely to prove influential in determining the next president of the United States.

And their influence won’t stop there. According to Bill Frey, a demographer and Metropolitan Policy Program senior fellow, the rapid growth of minority populations in the U.S. represents a “diversity explosion” that is set to change the course of American politics in this election and beyond.

In the video, Frey explains that whites have voted for Republican presidential candidates in every election since 1968, and blacks have voted heavily Democratic even longer, with Hispanics and Asians trending Democratic over the past several elections.

With the rise in Democratic-leaning minorities across the nation, many former Republican strongholds and swing states now have the potential to become Democratic-leaning states, argues Frey.

So what does this mean for the future of American politics? As Frey puts it, “the diversity surge that is sweeping the nation suggests that the future belongs to candidates who support issues embraced by the multicultural generation.”

As for the 2016 election, although it’s unlikely to be the last presidential race “that pits the old and the white against the young and the brown,” he contends that “it will be the most contentious.”

Watch the full video, and stay tuned for more videos from Frey on how demographics are shaping the 2016 election and beyond.

Read more in Bill Frey’s “Diversity Explosion.”

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