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Hispanic, Asian populations to triple

A Census Bureau report said Hispanic-Americans would make up nearly one-quarter of the U.S. population.
/ Source: Reuters

The Hispanic and Asian populations in the United States are expected to triple by 2050, when non-Hispanic whites would account for the barest majority, according to a Census Bureau report set.

This means Hispanic-Americans would make up nearly one-quarter of the U.S. population, a projection marked by Latino-American advocates as they consider coming elections.

The number of Hispanic-Americans should rise from about 36 million to nearly 103 million, and their share of the U.S. population would nearly double, from 12.6 percent to 24.4 percent, the census said.

Asian-Americans, who now account for 3.8 percent of the U.S. populace, would represent 8 percent of the population by mid-century. Their numbers would increase from nearly 11 million to more than 33 million.

Politicians taget Hispanics
The overall population should also continue to grow, from 282 million in 2000 to about 420 million in 2050.

But non-Hispanic whites would add only moderately to their numbers, from 196 million to 210 million. They would make up just 50.1 percent of the population in 2050, compared to 69.4 percent four years ago when the last census was taken.

For politicians eager to claim Hispanic votes in such key states as Florida, California and Texas, Perez said, actions speak louder than words -- even if the words are in Spanish.

“The focus has got to be much more on substance and much less on style,” Perez said. “When (politicians) think of reaching out to Latino voters, they think they need to say something in Spanish, but look at English-speaking Latinos: 60 percent of Latinos are American-born.”

Essential issues for Hispanic-Americans are education, neighborhood safety, access to health care and a sound economy, she said.

Black population to rise
The black population in the United States is projected to rise from 36 million to 61 million, raising their share of the country’s population from 12.7 percent to 14.6 percent.

The U.S. population will be generally older, with child-bearing rates remaining low as baby boomers -- those born between 1946 and 1964 -- begin to turn 65 in 2011. By 2030, about one person in five will be 65 or older.

As boomers move toward retirement and seek funds from Social Security, the largest source of new workers will be the young Hispanic population, according to Roberto Suro of the Pew Hispanic Center.

“Financing the old age of the baby boomers would be more difficult without a growing Hispanic population,” Suro said in a telephone interview.

Overall in the United States, women will continue to outnumber men, with 6.9 million more females than males in 2050, compared to 5.3 million more in 2000.