John Liu Elected as the First Taiwan-Born State Senator in New York

john liu

John Liu became the first Taiwan-born U.S. state senator in New York after winning his race this week.

The Democratic candidate, 51, won the seat in the New York State Senate District 11 with 31,858 votes or 55% of those cast.


His rivals, Republican Vickie Paladino and Sen. Tony Avella, earned 13,450 and 10,961 votes, respectively.

Liu declared victory at Bayside’s Monahan & Fitzergerald’s bar around 10:30 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Queens Patch reported.

“We took this senate seat back for a true Democrat!” he exclaimed. “It’s about this district, it’s about this community, it’s also about the state of New York, and it’s about fighting back against what’s happening in this country!”

Liu hopes to pass legislation that will “bring dignity to immigrants” and “make sure that workers are treated fairly.”

He also called to pass the reproductive health act. “There is so much legislation that is bottled up in the New York state senate. We’re going to work hard to pass that come January.”

Liu, who moved to New York at the age of five, also made history back in 2001 for becoming the first Asian-American to be elected to the New York City Council, Taiwan News noted. He served from 2002 to 2010 while representing the northeast Queens area.

In 2009, he became the New York City Comptroller and served the position from 2010 to 2013. He ran for mayor in 2013 but failed to win the Democratic Party’s primary election, finishing fourth place.

In 2014, he ran for the New York State Senate District 11 but lost to incumbent Avella in the Democratic Party’s primary election.

He challenged Avella yet again this year and won the party with 52.9% of votes.

Alongside Liu, two other Taiwanese Americans, U.S. Congresswomen Grace Meng and New York assemblywoman Yuh-Line Niou, won their bids for reelection.

Liu assumes office beginning 2019.

Images via Twitter / @LiuNewYork

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