October 21, 2014

Republican Opponent Jim Cunneen Endorses Rep. Mike Honda

Editor’s Note: The below is a reposting of “Former Republican Opponent Jim Cunneen Endorses Congressman Mike Honda” from our friends at Mike Honda for Congress. We endorsed his 2014 campaign. Mike is an AAA-Fund Honorary Board member.

Mike Honda for Congress

Silicon Valley, CA – Today, prominent Republican Jim Cunneen endorsed Congressman Mike Honda in California’s 17th district following Vanila Singh’s 3rd place finish in the June primary. Former Assemblymember Cunneen was Congressman Honda’s Republican opponent during the 2000 Congressional election. Cunneen is also a former President and CEO of the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce, and has held executive positions at Applied Materials and Cisco Systems (both headquartered in CA-17).

“I am proud to support Congressman Honda this November,” said Cunneen. “I’ve admired Mike for as long as I’ve known him. In the Assembly, we worked together on technology and education issues. Most of all, Mike’s integrity and good character have served our region well. His hard work and seniority has consistently delivered for Silicon Valley, including his bipartisan work to secure funding for the BART extension that is delivering thousands of jobs. As a previous supporter of Republican Vanila Singh, who is no longer in the race, I ask that other Republicans join me and switch their support to Mike Honda, who will continue working hard to represent all of us in Silicon Valley.”

Mr. Cunneen joins local Republican elected officials that have endorsed Congressman Mike Honda, such as: Sheriff Laurie Smith, County of Santa Clara; Vice Mayor Jim Davis, City of Sunnyvale; Vice Mayor Jerry Marsalli, City of Santa Clara; Councilmember Patrick Kolstad, City of Santa Clara; Councilmember Tara Martin-Milius, City of Sunnyvale; Trustee Khoa Nguyen, Berryessa Unified School District; Commissioner Cyndy Mozzetti, Fremont Planning Commission; Director Bernard Stewart, Washington Township Healthcare Hospital System; and Former Mayor Denny Weisgerber, City of Milpitas.

The latest public poll available in this race, commissioned by CBS and cited in Ro Khanna campaign memos, has Honda currently leading among registered Republican voters (19% to 18%). The poll also shows a huge lead for Congressman Honda in key demographic groups for the district, such as Moderates (44% to 26%) and Democrats (57% to 21%). Full poll results are available here.

Voters in California’s 17th Congressional District made it clear on June 3rd that they overwhelmingly support Congressman Mike Honda to any of his opponents by 20%, despite being outspent by Ro Khanna’s campaign by a more than 2 to 1 margin. The Honda campaign now has more resources than Khanna, and is in a good position to continue building upon this lead.

Sen. Hirono: To Chair Judiciary Subcommittee

Editor’s Note: The below is a re-posting of ” from our friends at Mazie Hirono‘s office.

Mazie Hirono, a voice for Hawaii in the US Senate


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 27, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Thursday announced that Senator Mazie K. Hirono will become chair of the Subcommittee on Oversight, Federal Rights and Agency Action.

The subcommittee was created at the beginning of the 113th Congress to provide oversight and review of agency rulemaking and agency action. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who currently chairs the subcommittee, is stepping down to take over a gavel on another committee. Hirono, who joined the Judiciary Committee at the beginning of the 113th Congress and has been a leader on a range of issues including immigration and sentencing reform, will assume the gavel April 1.

“I look forward to chairing the Judiciary Subcommittee on Oversight, Federal Rights and Agency Actions and thank Chairman Leahy for this opportunity to help make sure that the voices of everyday citizens are heard,” Hirono said. “I plan to work so that the unique needs of Hawaii are represented as we review agency actions and Executive Branch initiatives. I will also look for ways to improve oversight of government waste and abuse and strengthen consumer protections for all Americans.”

“The Subcommittee on Oversight, Federal Rights and Agency Action plays an important role in the Judiciary Committee’s larger mission to provide rigorous oversight and ensure a timely and fair approach to administrative rulemaking that impacts millions of Americans,” Leahy said. “I am confident Senator Hirono will provide meaningful leadership on these important issues. I congratulate her on her new role, and I thank Senator Blumenthal for his continued service to this committee.”

“Senator Hirono has a record of ensuring that federal agencies follow and enforce the law, and I know this subcommittee will continue to flourish under her leadership,” said Blumenthal, who presided over his final subcommittee hearing as chairman this week. “It was an honor to serve as the first chairman of the subcommittee. I appreciate Chairman Leahy’s confidence and the opportunity he gave me to lead this subcommittee.”

A complete description of the Subcommittee on Oversight, Federal Rights and Agency Action’s jurisdiction can be read online. Additional information about all the Judiciary Committee’s subcommittees is also available online.

Leland Yee Disappoints

Editor’s Note: Richard’s opinions are his alone, no one else’s.

Leland Yee arrested

Leland Yee‘s arrest is a severe disappointment to Toisanese, Chinese-Americans, his electorates, the state of California & the AAPI community all. FBI busted, raided & arrested him with 26 members of Ghee Kung Tong, a Chinatown gang for a huge array of charges, all serious & when summed, astounding.

The AAA-Fund has never had a relationship with him in any way & reminds us all how important vetting our endorsed candidates carefully & thoroughly is not just for us as an organization but for our own morality & consciousness. Voting for a candidate is a lot more than who had the most negative ads, who spent the most, whose polls got the most media buzz, who had the most lobbyists donate money to gartner favor, and other demoralizing inane parts of the politics industry. It’s about representing the public for the public good. I tell my friends to do work for the love of the purpose & politicians should likewise take heed.

Judge Cheryl Moss

Editor’s Note: As our mission here is to support AAPIs in any & every way, we feature Judge Cheryl Moss (JudgePedia, official website and biography, campaign website), a Judge of the 8th Judicial District Court, Family Division, Clark County, State of Nevada. She campaigns for another 6-year term in this year’s election. Having filed begins an often long road of many steps for all in US politics and we want you to publicize & support all AAPIs in this work. Note her June 10 primary election and Nov 4 general election dates so read, learn, volunteer & publicize! Below is her biography which we share with you.

Judge Cheryl Moss

Judge Cheryl Moss was elected in 2000 and re-elected in 2002 and 2008 to the 8th Judicial District Court, Family Division, Clark County, State of Nevada. She is currently serving a six-year term until 2014.

Judge Moss is the first Asian-American to be elected to a statewide judicial office in the State of Nevada’s history. She has served in public office as a District Court Judge since January 2001.

Judge Moss attended college at George Washington University then law school at the Catholic University of America, both in Washington, D.C. Judge Moss graduated in the top 25% of her law school class in 1994. She is licensed to practice law in Nevada, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.

After graduating law school and working as a judicial law clerk for Superior Court Judge John H. Bayly, Jr., in Washington, D.C., Judge Moss relocated in 1995 to Las Vegas.

In 1998, Cheryl owned and managed her solo law practice, The Law Office of Cheryl B. Moss, Chartered, practicing mainly in family law and personal injury law. In 1999, she received the Shining Star Award from the Clark County Pro Bono Project for her unselfish representation of low-income clients.

During her first year as a Family Court Judge, Judge Moss became the first Judge to implement a pilot program for referring parents in child custody cases for Problem Gambling Assessments. Judge Moss successfully launched the program with the help and coordination of the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling.

Judge Moss served on the Board of Trustees of the Clark County Law Library. She also volunteers her time judging in local and statewide competitions such as the UNLV Law School Moot Court Competition, the High School Mock Trial Competition, and previously with the Trial By Peers Program. Judge Moss also collaborates with the Southern Nevada Gang Prevention Task Committee.

Judge Moss has given several lectures in legal and medical seminars dealing with substance abuse disorders and addictive behaviors. She gave presentations for the National Business Institute, the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling, the National Center for Responsible Gaming, Nellis Air Force Base, the Nevada Army Reserve Training Center, and at the University of Nevada Las Vegas.

Judge Moss has earned over 1000 hours of continuing legal education with a concentration in domestic relations law.

In August 2007, Judge Moss was the first Judge to graduate from the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training program wherein Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Officers are trained to respond to emergency calls involving the mentally ill or those in crisis.

In 2011, Judge Moss was recognized as one of the 100 Most Influential Filipina Women in the U.S.

In 2013, Judge Moss received The Golden Pear Award for Professional Achievement from the Filipino American Heritage Foundation of Nevada.

This is now her 14th year as a Family Court Judge. Judge Moss is dedicated to her career in public service. Judge Moss is currently pursuing re-election to a 4th term on the bench this November 2014.

Korean American Linda Bryant VA’s 1st AAPI Deputy Attorney General

Editor’s Note: The below is from our friends at Democratic Asian Americans of Virginia (DAAV).

January 16, 2014
Jennifer Oh | 571 225 1930 | daavmedia@gmail.com

Attorney General Mark Herring Makes Historic AAPI Appointment. Korean American Linda Bryant has been named the Commonwealth’s First AAPI Deputy Attorney General and the First Korean American Attorney appointed by the Commonwealth’s Attorney General.

DAAV (Democratic Asian Americans of Virginia) is pleased to congratulate Linda Bryant of Chesapeake, Virginia as she has been appointed the first AAPI Deputy Attorney General in the Commonwealth of Virginia by Attorney General Mark Herring. Linda will be one of four deputy attorneys general who report to the chief deputy attorney general and the attorney general. Linda will also be the first Korean American attorney to serve in the Commonwealth’s Attorney General Office.

Linda, a Korean American was raised in Springfield, Virginia and graduated from Robert E. Lee High School. Linda received undergraduate degrees in History and Spanish from the University of Virginia before completing her law studies at the College of William and Mary.

Following law school, Linda joined the United States Army. She completed basic training and parachutist training. She did her tour of duty as a Captain with the 7th Transportation Group – then co-located at Fort Eustis and Fort Story in Newport News and Virginia Beach. The 7th Transportation Group is known as the “Army’s Navy.” In the 1990s, when Linda served, it was one of the most deployed units of the U.S. Army. The 7th Transportation Group’s mission was to operate seaports, rail terminals and truck transportation routes to make sure our military forces could successfully enter and move forward anywhere in the world during any military deployment.

In 1996, following her tour of active duty service in the United States Army, Linda became an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for the Commonwealth of Virginia. She moved up through the ranks and became a Senior Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney and then a Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney in Norfolk, VA.

Since 2010, Linda has been an educator, serving as an adjunct professor at the College of William and Mary, Marshall Wythe School of Law.

Linda has been recognized for leadership and service to the Commonwealth of Virginia with a Virginia“2010 Leader in the Law” award, given to a handful of Virginia attorneys who have improved the Virginia legal system; a “Virginia 2010 Duval Distinguished Prosecutor Award” for fair and ethical service as a prosecutor; and, a “2012 YWCA Woman of Distinction Award” for combatting violence and racism in the Hampton Roads community. She is currently on the Advisory Board for Operation Renewed Hope Foundation, which finds housing for homeless vets.

Family life is very important to Linda as she is the proud mother to daughter Alex Connell and wife to Scott, who is a 23-year Naval Special Operations Officer, with the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) unit stationed at Little Creek. He and his unit deactivate bombs around the world. Linda’s mother is Kim Fox. Her maiden name is Myungi Kim and resides in Falls Church, Virginia.

Seung Baik, President of the Korean American Bar Association for the Washington, DC Area, said “We are so glad to see the first Korean American attorney appointed to serve the Attorney General of Virginia. The Korean American community is proud of Linda and we look forward to many more years of her leadership. We hope her appointment will inspire young aspiring attorneys all over the Greater Washington, DC Area.”

Mary Thexton, President of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Virginia, commented “The AAPI legal community is so pleased to see Attorney General Mark Herring make such an early and noteworthy start to honoring his commitment that the Attorney General’s office be a reflection of Virginia’s diverse population. We applaud this first step and look forward to partnering with the Attorney General’s office in pursuit of justice in our commonwealth. ”

Linda Bryant is expected to begin her service January 27th, 2014.

FAIRFAX, VA—Democratic Asian Americans of Virginia (DAAV) is a constituency group of self-identified Asian Pacific Americans recognized by the Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA). DAAV is dedicated to increasing APA community engagement in the political process through such efforts as supporting increased voter registration, education awareness programs and pro APA community candidates.

What It’s Like To Be The Only Asian-American Woman in the U.S. Senate

Senator Mazie Hirono

Today, we’ve another article for you in addition to today’s newsletter trivia answer, “What It’s Like To Be The Only Asian-American Woman in the U.S. Senate“.

We’ve Tweeted this on our Twitter. Waiting for Medium‘s Facebook Page to post it to re-post it to our new Facebook Page.

Obama Nominates Christopher P. Lu for Department of Labor Deputy Secretary

Editor’s Note: The below is a highlight of “President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts“. Chris is a former White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders co-chair, an organization we often publicize and support.

WASHINGTON – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key Administration posts:

Christopher P. Lu, Nominee for Deputy Secretary, Department of Labor

Christopher P. Lu is a senior fellow at the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress, and in 2013, he was also a fellow at the University of Chicago Institute of Politics and the Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy. From 2009 to 2013, Mr. Lu served in the White House as Assistant to the President and Cabinet Secretary. Previously, in 2008, he served as Executive Director of the Obama-Biden Transition Project. From 2005 to 2008, Mr. Lu served as Legislative Director and then as Acting Chief of Staff for U.S. Senator Barack Obama. From 1997 to 2005, Mr. Lu was Deputy Chief Counsel of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (Minority Staff). He began his career as a law clerk to Judge Robert E. Cowen on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and as an attorney at Sidley Austin. Mr. Lu was Co-Chair of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders from 2011 to 2013. He received an A.B. from Princeton University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Asian American GOTV w/ McAuliffe, Northam, Herring

Editor’s Note: The below is from our friends at their Virginia campaigns. We encourage our readers to participate in these GOTV efforts as they advance our core purpose, to advance Asian American participation in US politics at all levels.

Asian American GOTV Rally with Terry McAuliffe, Ralph Northam, and Mark Herring on Friday, 11/1, 6:30pm – 7:30pm. We’ll be at Delegate Mark Keam’s Office, 1952 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA, 22182.

We’re also having a special luncheon with Belkis Leong-Hong, Chairwoman of the DNC’s AAPI Caucus on Sunday, 11/3, 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM over at Dragonfly Bistro at 13840 Braddock Road, Suite F, Centreville, VA 20121. Dunn Loring is closest Metro.

Can you make it to one of these events? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll contact you! We’re so happy to have the community on our side. Note if you drive or need ride.
Saturday, Nov. 2, 10 a.m., 1 p.m., 4 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 3, 1 p.m., 4 p.m.
Monday, Nov, 4, 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Tuesday, Nov 5, 6 a.m. – 7 p.m.

We just released our third campaign video (shown above). Feel free to share with folks you know who can vote for us in District 67.

We’ve created an Event in our Facebook Group.

OTHER EVENTS:

FRIDAY: We’re having an Asian American GOTV Rally with Terry McAuliffe, Ralph Northam, and Mark Herring on Friday, 11/1, 6:30pm – 7:30pm. Delegate Mark Keam’s Office, 1952 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA, 22182.

HUNG NGUYEN EVENT: We’re also having a special luncheon with Belkis Leong-Hong, Chairwoman of the DNC’s AAPI Caucus on Sunday, 11/3, 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM over at Dragonfly Bistro at 13840 Braddock Road, Suite F, Centreville, VA 20121.

Living vs dead Chinatowns, gentrification & elections

AALDEF, the NYC based Asian American civil rights organization, has a new report out about the rate of gentrification in Chinatowns in NYC, Boston, and Philadelphia. (I guess DC was just a lost cause.) In conjunction with the discussion of this article, I want to propose the idea of “living” (these three cities, Chicago, San Francisco) versus “dead” Chinatowns (DC.) In my mind, when I walk the streets of a given Chinatown, “living” connotes active engagement and residency by the Chinese American community versus the slick, big box retail feel of Washington, DC Chinatown, which most Chinese Americans fled decades ago for Montgomery County, MD, and Fairfax, VA. The shops in DC Chinatown are adorned in bright signs with Chinese characters, but have very little daily relevance to Chinese or Chinese American culture, such as the skateboard shop, the Ann Taylor, and the Legal Seafood.

It’s a very read-worthy report, and I’ve gone on the walking tour of Boston Chinatown where you can see how highway I-93 literally cuts through the enclave, with a half-sheared building standing mute but providing powerful testimony to interesting municipal planning. The report illuminated that the AAPI population in Boston Chinatown went from 70% in 1990 to 46% in 2010. Philadelphia Chinatown has been encroached upon by developers, and was under threat from a proposed casino for a significant period. NYC Chinatown was at one point overtaking Little Italy, but now with the New Museum and the gentrification of the Bowery, is being pressed upon by towering luxury apartment buildings. Not to mention, Park Row, a residential community adjacent to South Chinatown, and nearby commercial buildings (shops and restaurants) have been under the shadow of 9/11 for 12 years, with limited access for a substantial period of time (9/11 cleanup), depressing retail sales. To this day, there are armed police stations that guard the entrance path to Park Row.

San Francisco Chinatown has managed to thrive due to a high intra-ethnicity turnover rate, and Chicago Chinatown (of which, really, there are 3 – historic Chinatown, “new” Argyle (largely Vietnamese-Chinese American) Chinatown, and “new new” Chinatown, which is across the street from historic Chinatown, and includes a number of residential properties that have lured second and third generation Chinese Americans back to the city center. (There is some small degree of this happening in other cities as well, but in my mind, Chicago has done a better job than most.)

The reason that I keep rotating back to this issue of whether Chinese Americans who have “made it” come back is because it is also a large part of why “living” Chinatowns become essentially “dead” Chinatowns. Moving out of Chinatown and to the suburbs is intrinsically seen as one of the markers of success for first, second, and third generation Chinese Americans. This is antithetical to keeping Chinatowns vibrant. This is separate from biased and discriminatory urban planning decisions hatched in concert with the stereotypically greedy developers. And it absolutely doesn’t discount folks who want to stay but get pushed out – I’m just bringing this up because it’s also a real thing.

Don’t get me wrong – DC Chinatown/Verizon Center is more bustling and lively than a decade ago, and is now an economic engine and one of the hearts of the city, but the business owners by and large do not live there. Although the DC AAPI population has risen 60% since 2000, according to the 2010 Census.

In NYC, the press of developers on the boundaries of Chinatown has caused friends who have lived, breathed, and worked in Chinatown for decades to move to Harlem, where elected officials like City Councilor Melissa Mark-Vivitero have noticed the increase of AAPIs. This follows on a previous out-migration to Queens (Flushing, Woodside, etc.), Brooklyn (where there is another Chinatown), New Jersey, Long Island, Westchester, and Connecticut.

So how do we keep the living nature of Chinatowns across the country? The report proposes several solutions: reinforcing and constructing more low-income housing, subsidizing local small businesses, prioritizing green spaces, strengthening the links between satellite Asian Am enclaves in the suburbs to the Chinatown cores, and engaging in dialogue with traditional community land owners like the family associations. All of these are great, and I’m going to a step further.

What I’m fundamentally saying is that keeping Chinatown affordable and full of vitality is partially dependent upon the people in elected office. They hold hearings and have influence over city planning to varying degrees. Former At-Large Boston City Councilor Sam Yoon came out of the fight to keep one Boston Chinatown. Michelle Wu and Suzanne Lee are running for city council in Boston (different seats.) Philadelphia has yet to elect a progressive AAPI city councilmember, whereas SF has a plethora of AAPI electeds (and folks in the pipelines to run when the inevitable term limits hit.) AAAF Greater Chicago helped get Alderman Ameya Pawar, the first AAPI alderman ever in Chicago, elected in 2011. Progress is slow, but steady.

Not that AAPI candidates are necessarily going to be informed about the community’s issues, or even live in the Chinatown district. It is incumbent upon the community and those who work to keep living, breathing Chinatowns to educate candidates and elected officials, regardless of their ethnicity. Because we all need allies and champions in this effort, and sometimes people surprise you.

–Caroline

DC Tues Oct 8: Free Happy Hour with VA’s Mark Keam & Hung Nguyen

The Asian American Action Fund invites you to a happy hour honoring 2 great Asian American candidates running for the Virginia House of Delegates on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013: Incumbent Mark Keam (35th District) and challenger Hung Nguyen (67th District). Contributions accepted by the AAA Fund at this event will be used by the AAA Fund to support outstanding leaders who care about the diverse Asian American and Pacific Islander community.

Tuesday, October 8
6 – 8 p.m.
Local 16, 1602 U Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009

Enjoy complimentary pizza and happy hour specials until 8 p.m.

The Asian American Action Fund ( aaa-fund.com) is dedicated to increasing the voice of the Asian
American communities in government by helping to elect candidates who have a demonstrated
commitment to these constituencies.
Suggested Contribution to AAA Fund: $25 at the event or online at http://bit.ly/KeamNguyen13 or sign up for volunteer shifts (with the campaigns) at the event.

Please contact KJ Bagchi KJBagchi@gmail.com or Tom Goldstein TGoldstein@PaxtonGroup.com with any questions.

Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.