More than 150 prominent Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) have come together to support Senator Elizabeth Warren in her bid for the presidency.
In an open statement on Thursday, the group who calls themselves “AAPIs with Warren” argued that “the senator’s experience, policies, and character — and her support of broad inclusion, her profound empathy and her openness to input and change — are unique among the 2020 candidates.”
— AAPIs with Warren (@AAPI4Warren) January 11, 2020
Spearheaded by Jeff Yang (journalist; contributor, CNN Opinion), Curtis Chin (writer and documentary filmmaker, “Tested” and “Vincent Who?”) and Laura Shin (founder, Korean Americans for Obama and Korean Americans for Hillary; former president, Korean American Democratic Committee of Los Angeles), the group is composed of a diverse mix of professionals, entrepreneurs, creatives and activists.
So far, it includes names such as Constance Wu (actor, “Crazy Rich Asians”), Jenny Han (author, “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before”), Celeste Ng (author, “Little Fires Everywhere”), Ellen K. Pao (CEO, Project Include; former CEO, Reddit) and Dr. Esther Choo (emergency physician, healthcare equity advocate).
I’m proud to endorse Senator Warren for President along with over 140 AAPI leaders. I believe she is the only remaining candidate who understands and cares about intersectionality and won’t leave anyone behind. #AAPIsWithWarren #WithWarren https://t.co/t34rWfDH2w
— Ellen K. Pao (@ekp) January 23, 2020
According to the group, their decision to voice support for Warren was inspired by a similar statement from 100 Black Womxn for Elizabeth Warren, an “organizing collective of leaders, activists, artists, writers, and political strategists from across the country in the fight for Black Liberation.”
While the group acknowledged the presence of other AAPI candidates for the Democratic nomination, such as Andrew Yang and Tulsi Gabbard, they see Warren as an “experienced, steady, and unifying hand on the post-Trump rudder” with “a pragmatic and thorough set of blueprints for the kind of bold, transformative solutions that will be needed to repair that which has been broken by the Trump regime.”
“We believe that Senator Warren is the candidate who has outlined the most detailed and comprehensive path forward for our nation and shown the most effective and compelling plans to make that path a reality,” the group stated.
“Many of the issues on which she’s strongest are ones with critical importance for and direct impact on our community: education, support for families, investment in entrepreneurship, immigration.”
— AAPIs with Warren (@AAPI4Warren) January 12, 2020
The group also published a separate policy sheet that details how Warren’s plans can particularly impact AAPIs. On the topic of immigration, for instance, the group cited the candidate’s support for mechanisms that make the process more welcoming, including providing a path to citizenship for DREAMers.
“She has called for more support for legal immigration, including redistributing unused visas to address the millions of backlogged individuals currently waiting for a way to enter the United States, as well as lower barriers to naturalization for green card holders — over a third of whom are Asian, who make up the largest group of naturalized citizens in the United States. She has declared that she will not just extend DACA, but provide a path to citizenship for DREAMers — and their families; about one in 10 DACA-eligible individuals in the U.S. are Asian,” the group noted.
They also cited Warren’s plan to decriminalize undocumented immigration and welcome more refugees, as well as her opposition against the Trump administration’s attacks on the H1-B visa program.
“She wants to decriminalize undocumented immigration, making it a civil crime to cross the border without papers. She wants to expand admission of refugees by a factor of six to eight times, welcoming 125,000 refugees in her first year as president, rising to 175,000 a year by the end of her first term; over half of all refugees over the past ten years have come from Asia,” the group noted. “She has called out the cruelty of the current administration’s xenophobic attacks on the H1-B visa program — a vital immigration path for skilled workers that has been disproportionately important for Asians, who make up 9 out of 10 holders of H1-B visas.”
Warren has expressed gratitude for each of these endorsements.
“I’m grateful down to my toes for each of these endorsements. I promise to fight shoulder-to-shoulder with you all for the big, structural change we need so everyone has the opportunity to succeed,” she wrote on Twitter.
I’m grateful down to my toes for each of these endorsements. I promise to fight shoulder-to-shoulder with you all for the big, structural change we need so everyone has the opportunity to succeed. https://t.co/as6JRjCSPw
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) January 23, 2020
As of the writing of this article, there are 155 AAPIs with Warren. Those interested in becoming a supporter can fill out this form.