Here to Stay: Filipino Americans Respond to Election Results

HERE TO STAY: FILIPINO AMERICANS RESPOND TO ELECTION RESULTS

We stand ready to safeguard progress & continue to build political power for Filipino Americans

NEW YORK, NY – This evening, the board of the Filipino American Democratic Club of the New York released the following statement:

The Filipino American community congratulates Secretary Hillary Clinton for winning the popular vote in last night’s presidential elections, and we commend her for her historic campaign and candidacy, and her lifetime of public service. We are so proud to be the first major party that has nominated a woman for president, and that has sent the first African American president to the White House. Clinton’s candidacy proves that progress for our country’s women and girls is within reach, and that the dream of the first woman president will happen one day.

The results of this election have made one thing clear: Our families are on the line, but we as Filipino Americans are here to stay. We are here to build and protect our community, our families, and our loved ones. We stand ready to safeguard the progress that we have already accomplished, to build our political power, and to rise to the immense challenge before us.

Now more than ever, we need to support leaders and organizations like Filipino American Democratic Club of New York so that we can defend our community and fight for equity for Filipino Americans. It is critical that our community must step up, and show up, not just for ourselves but for others, so that our needs and priorities are represented. And not just every four years, but every day. Democracy must be our duty, and not a chore. We must use our power as Filipino Americans, the second largest Asian American group by nationality in the United States, and a growing and decisive political force, to demand accountability and respect from the new Donald Trump administration. At the local level, we continue on with our mission of recruiting Filipino Americans to join the Democratic Committee of their local county, and to apply and participate in their Community Board, and to encourage Filipino Americans and Asian Americans to run for office. We must fight for a Public Filipino culture.

While FADCNY is deeply disappointed and will be in mourning long after today with the overall results of the election, it is time now to roll up our sleeves to protect our political and policy priorities, including DACA and DAPA at the Federal level. We have no time to waste. These executive actions are now in jeopardy. 4,800 Filipinos who were undocumented have already benefited from a legal status provided by President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, with many more still eligible. We call on Filipino Americans whose immigration status is in question to make a plan to apply for relief, and for green card holders to naturalize as soon as possible, and to organize with immigrant organizations to fight for their rights.

The most important and immediate local political and legislative priority of the Filipino American community in New York is opposing the development of a six-story megachurch in the heart of Little Manila, our home and refuge for the Filipino community. Now more than ever, we must work aggressively to protect our communities from being wiped off the map. We will also continue to stand up against bigotry and hatred, like that demonstrated by former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee who attacked Hillary Clinton’s Filipina domestic worker Marina Santos last night on Twitter, and for the aggression that our community will surely face in the weeks and years ahead.

In this darkness, we have some rays of light and hope. Clinton’s campaign hired top Asian American and Filipino American talent, people like Christina Baal-Owens, New York State Organizing Director, and Jason Tengco, National AAPI Outreach Director, and also two of FADCNY’s founding board members, Maria Cruz Lee, New York State Digital Director, and Aaron Soriano, Regional Field Director for the Colorado Coordinated Campaign. Clinton’s campaign also had a strategy in place for securing the support of our community, mobilizing them to engage in phone banking, canvassing in battleground states, texting voters, conducting visibility, fundraising, and as well as voter registration, education, protection and engagement, and that is why she was able to secure so much of the Filipino American community’s vote.

This election also saw the victories of Democratic candidates like Brian Barnwell for Assembly representing Woodside, Queens, Yuh-Line Niou, the first Asian American elected official representing Lower Manhattan for Assembly, as well as the re-election of Representative Grace Meng in Queens, who is the Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee, candidates that the Filipino American Democratic Club of New York encouraged and supported in the general election. Nationally, Filipino Americans played roles in the victories of Kamala Harris, the daughter of Jamaican and Indian immigrants in California, Catherine Cortez Masto in Nevada who is of Mexican descent, Tammy Duckworth in Illinois who is the first Asian-American senator on the mainland US and the first Senator of Thai descent. These Democratic senators will join Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii who became the first Asian American senator when she was elected in 2012, quadrupling the number of women of color in the Senate. Today, the Filipino American community celebrates their historic victories, and tomorrow we will work on supporting progressive Democratic policies that address our community’s urgent needs.

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The Filipino American Democratic Club of New York is a political club that organizes and leads the Filipino American electorate in New York City and New York State. We are dedicated to advancing Filipino American and Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) issues and priorities among elected officials and candidates for public office