The real swing demographic in the election: Asian-Americans?

According to a Pew Research Center study released last week, Asian-Americans are now the highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group in the country. With more than 18 million residents, Asian-Americas currently account for 5.8 percent of the total U.S. population.

Perhaps even more valuable to politicians is the ideological breakdown of the demographic. A recent Lake Research Partners study found that while 53 percent of Asian-Americans identify as Democrats and 16 percent as Republicans, a whopping 31 percent consider themselves independents.

According to Gloria Chan, president and CEO of the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies, this represents a relatively untapped treasure trove of votes that could make a difference in congressional races across the country — and even the presidency.