Aug. 21, 2019 By Allie Griffin
Congresswoman Grace Meng along with ASPIRE PAC, the political arm of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Members of Congress, sent a letter to the Democratic National Committee Tuesday calling for the DNC to ensure that at least one of its sponsored presidential debates features an AAPI moderator.
In a letter to DNC Chairman Tom Perez, the Congress members wrote that AAPI voters will play a critical role in the 2020 election, numbering 11 million registered voters or 5 percent of the electorate. In addition, there are currently three Asian American and Pacific Islanders seeking the Democractic presidential nomination.
“Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the fastest growing population in our country and the DNC has rightly recognized this fact by increasing the number of AAPIs in senior level positions, and expanding AAPI outreach efforts,” Congresswoman Meng, who is Chair of ASPIRE, said. “It is now time for the DNC to take their commitment even further by ensuring that Asian Americans are represented among moderators on the debate stage.”
AAPI voters’ participation in the 2018 midterm elections increased more than any other racial group, according to the letter.
Meng said she was hopeful that the DNC would appoint an Asian American or Pacific Islander as a debate moderator. “[I] look forward to Chairman Perez responding to our request,” she said. “I am confident that host networks will not have trouble finding qualified and talented AAPIs to include in their moderator panels.”