WASHINGTON—Today, the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Leadership PAC announce the election of Rep. Grace Meng (NY-06) as chair. She succeeds Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27), who founded the CAPAC Leadership PAC. The mission of the CAPAC Leadership PAC is to ensure fair representation in the U.S. Congress by increasing the number of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) legislators and supporting federal candidates with large AAPI constituencies who support the needs and values of the AAPI community.
"The CAPAC Leadership PAC is about leadership, empowerment, action and diversity in our political process. I'm extremely proud of the progress that we have made over the last two election cycles. We now have an unprecedented number of AAPIs serving in Congress," said Rep. Judy Chu, immediate past chair of the CAPAC Leadership PAC. "This year is an extremely important election year for our nation and for our community. I have full confidence that my colleague, Grace Meng, will lead our PAC to new heights with her vision and commitment."
Launched in late 2011, the CAPAC Leadership PAC had an immediate impact on the 2012 Elections. Through its support, the PAC welcomed six newly elected AAPI Members of Congress: Sen. Mazie K. Hirono (HI), Rep. Ami Bera (CA-07), Rep. Tammy Duckworth (IL-08), Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02), Rep. Grace Meng (NY-06) and Rep. Mark Takano (CA-41). In the 2014 Elections, the PAC supported and welcomed new members Rep. Ted Lieu (CA-33) and Rep. Mark Takai (HI-01). Today, there are 14 AAPI Members of Congress.
"In order to energize the AAPI community and ensure we have a seat at the table, we must work hard to elect candidates that understand and will uphold the mission of the CAPAC Leadership PAC," said Rep. Grace Meng, chair of the CAPAC Leadership PAC. "The CAPAC Leadership PAC played an important role in my election and I look forward to offering the same opportunities to candidates that share our values and that live in districts with large AAPI populations."
Meng is serving her second term in the U.S. House of Representatives, where she represents the Sixth Congressional District of New York encompassing the New York City borough of Queens, including west, central and northeast Queens. Meng is the first Asian American Member of Congress from New York State, and the only Congress member of Asian descent in the entire Northeast. She is also the first female Member of Congress from Queens since former Vice Presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro.
"Judy Chu has done a remarkable job in building the PAC to support the growing pipeline of AAPI candidates running for federal office," said Mike Honda (CA-17), vice chair of the CAPAC Leadership PAC. "I am pleased that Grace Meng will be leading our efforts for greater representation in Congress and I look forward to supporting her vision and efforts."
At nearly 20 million strong and representing 6 percent of the total U.S. population, the AAPI population grew 46% from 2002 to 2014 and it is the fastest growing population in the United States. The U.S. Census projects 150 percent growth between now and 2050. In just the last 10 years, there has been a steady increase of viable federal candidates of AAPI descent. This year alone, there are forty AAPI candidates running for federal office, some of which have mounted formidable campaigns, outraising their opponents in contributions and conducting aggressive outreach to their communities.
Chu chairs the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, the official congressional member organization. She remains on the executive committee of the CAPAC Leadership PAC board in the position of immediate past chair.
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