|Friend -- |
It's been a busy year legislating in the House and campaigning across the country for Democrats up and down the ballot. I wanted to share with you some of the things I've done in 2019 to ensure Donald Trump is a one-term president and that our state parties are in the strongest position possible to elect Democrats everywhere.
Since 2017, I’ve campaigned across 23 states -- including 10 this year. I got to hear from our diverse slate of Democratic presidential candidates, and speak myself, at both the New Hampshire Democratic Party Convention and the Iowa Steak Fry. I also had the opportunity to visit Montana with Chair Tom Perez to speak at the Lewis & Clark Democrats Sponsor’s Reception and Dinner, attend the Kansas Democratic Party’s Demofest, be a part of the launch of Maryland Democratic Party's Women’s Diversity Leadership Council, and speak at the Vermont Democrats’ Autumn Harvest Celebration. In every state I visited, I also took the time to meet with local Democratic clubs and organizations, visit local small businesses and speak with their owners, and above all listen to local voters about how our party can better serve them. Every person I spoke with this year and since being elected Vice Chair has inspired me, moved me, and has proven again and again that even in traditionally red states, Americans are ready for a blue wave.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve made it my top priority to listen to, engage with, and empower the next generation of Democrats -- young voters and college-age voters. The DNC launched a new organizing initiative with a goal close to my heart -- youth engagement. Organizing Corps 2020 is a program that is recruiting and training the next generation of Democratic leaders. I'm already excited about the incredible young people who have participated and are going to grow our party not just in 2020, but for generations to come. I’ve seen models like this work: In 2018, I invested $80,000 through the New York State Party to fund full-time campus organizers across the state in Red to Blue districts, three of which we flipped. This year, I met with young Democrats from around the country, including the College Democrats of New York, College Democrats of Montana, High School Democrats, Blue Future, and more groups by and for young Americans. The young people I spoke to this year are the future of our party, and I couldn’t be more certain that our future is in good hands.
Asian American And Pacific Islander Voter Outreach
This year, I’ve had the privilege of celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with the North Carolina AAPI Caucus, meeting with the Ed Lee Democratic Club in San Francisco, and working with the DNC’s own AAPI Caucus and AAPI Leadership Council. AAPI voters will be key to Democratic wins in 2020, and this year and every year, I’ve committed to doing the organizing work needed to reach these voters and get them to the polls. I’ve led the fight for more AAPI inclusion in every step of the primary process in my role as DNC Vice Chair and as the Chair of the ASPIRE PAC, including ensuring that the December debate in Los Angeles has an AAPI moderator. Additionally, I had the chance to moderate AAPI Victory Fund's Presidential Forum. With ASPIRE PAC, we’ve already started the 2020 endorsement process to support AAPI Democratic candidates for Congress across the country, and have introduced an Adopt-A-State program, where our leadership commits to increasing AAPI engagement and securing Democratic wins in states across the country. Democrats must make sure every community has a seat at the table -- and this year I put in the work to make it happen.
Supporting Families in Queens and Across the Country
In 2018 and 2019, I led the fight to keep the Trump administration’s bigoted and politically motivated citizenship question off the 2020 census. I’m proud to say that we won and that next year’s census will not include a question that would keep countless Americans from responding. In Washington, I introduced new legislation in 2019 to support families as well. My New Deal for New Americans Act would establish critical assistance programs for immigrants and refugees, building a more inclusive and welcoming immigration system. My Total Recall Act would require businesses to post recall notices on their websites and on all social media accounts to ensure busy families get the information they need to stay safe from dangerous recalled products. And my Closing the Homework Gap Through Mobile Hotspots Act would create a $100 million grant program to connect more students to the internet. Finally, I was excited to help open a Small Business Development Center in my district at Queens College to support the entrepreneurs that make Queens strong.
In 2019, the House passed over 400 bills that will make a real difference in the lives of American families. The Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act will help us lower the cost of prescription drugs by directly negotiating the prices for Medicare recipients, and includes strong penalties for companies that raise the prices of drugs at a rate higher than inflation. The House also took a stand against the Trump administration’s cruel immigration policies, both with the American Dream and Promise Act of 2019, which offers a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers and TPS recipients and with our letter to the heads of the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services demanding that they abandon the administration’s plans to hike USCIS application fees. These achievements are exactly why voters came out in historic numbers in 2018 to flip the House blue.
As always, please reach out if you have any questions, ideas, or just want to catch up. Thank you for all that you do, and have a happy holidays!