At its recent meeting, the California Democratic Party Asian Pacific Islander Caucus elected new board officers, hailing from diverse AAPI communities and serving areas of California with burgeoning AAPI populations. The Board added several key positions in order to better reflect the AAPI community’s diversity and ensure outreach to these various communities in areas such as Orange County, the Central Valley, and the Desert region. The new API Caucus Board–which includes members of the East Asian, Southeast Asian, and South Asian communities–are gearing up to fight the recall elections.
“The Asian American and Pacific Islander communities constitute a pivotal voting bloc for Democrats, and Governor Newsom understands that,” said Deepa Sharma, the newly-elected Chair of the CDP API Caucus. “Proponents of the Republican recall effort have engaged in divisive and hateful rhetoric against the AAPI community, are anti-immigrant, and have historically used our community as a wedge. The AAPI community stands firmly against the recall and the GOP’s duplicitous power grab,” added Sharma.
Outreach to AAPI communities will prove critical in the recall election. Republican recall proponents have circulated a memo detailing their strategy, which includes the creation of a “Volunteer Citizens Brigade” that will identify potential supporters, “ballot harvest” Republican votes, and target Latino, AAPI, and Independent voters. The memo is available here.
Recognizing the importance of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, California Democrats at their recent convention voted to approve a resolution condemning hate crimes which have impacted the AAPI community in record numbers. More than 6,600 hate incidents have been reported in the year after the pandemic began in the United States according to Stop AAPI Hate. A full text of the approved resolution is available here.
The 2021-2023 API Caucus Executive Board Officers are as follows:
Chair: Deepa Sharma
Vice Chair: Adam Ma
Communications Secretary: Alfred Twu
Treasurer: Hon. Shawn Kumagai
Recording Secretary: Jessica Caloza
Parliamentary Chair: Aref Aziz
Legislative Director: Olivia Lee
Chair: Harris Mojadedi
Vice Chair & Political Director: Emily Ramos
Central Valley Vice Chair & Political Director: Hon. Rachel Hernandez
Secretary: Shivam Patel
Outreach & Local Clubs Chair: Zahra Hajee
Chair: Hon. Tammy Kim
Vice Chair & Political Director: Michael Milan
Secretary: Vanndearlyn Vong
Outreach & Local Clubs Chair: Steve Kang
Hon. Melissa Ramoso, State Chair Emeritus