Immigrants seen as key consideration in 16th District voting
Immigrants who are registered voters in Illinois' 16th district might carry considerable weight in future elections, particularly considering the closeness of the last presidential race, a report released recently by the New American Economy suggests.
The report details the positive impact America’s immigration population has on every congressional district in the country.
Illinois is home to nearly 2 million immigrants – the sixth-largest such population in the United States. The report identified them as working in a variety of fields, including software development and metal fabrication, and also helping to create jobs, as approximately 22 percent are business owners and entrepreneurs.
The 16th District in Illinois is represented by Republican Adam Kinzinger and includes the counties of Boone, Grundy, Bureau, Iroquois, LaSalle, Lee, Livingston, Ogle and Putnam. It also covers parts of DeKalb, Stark, Will, Ford and Winnebago counties.
The immigrant population of the district is 36,178 -- approximately 5 percent of the total population -- of which 16,422 are eligible to register to vote and 8,836 are registered. Immigrant families own 9,459 homes in the district, contributing to the economy through stable ownership, the report indicated.
As for earnings, immigrants in the 16th District earned nearly $985 million in 2014. They paid $262 million in taxes, putting their spending power at just over $720 million.
Another significant contribution by immigrants to the local economy is their ability to help create jobs through entrepreneurship. The 16th District is home to more than 1,000 immigrant entrepreneurs.
By press time, Kinzinger had not returned a request for comment.