LOS ANGELES – The 2016 presidential election is seven months away. Issues continue, the race for the Democratic presidential nomination is getting more heated than expected, and Asian American voters are being courted.
One of those reaching out is Amy Dacey.
The CEO of the Democratic National Committee recently visited California–the state with the most Asian Americans–holding a round table with the media and meeting with local communities.
Dacey said they saw a record turnout from Asian Americans in support of President Obama in 2012. She also said 4.5 million Asian Americans are now 18 and were able to register to vote in 2012.
“I do think they can have a strong voice in this election, and I do think what you’re seeing are issues that they do care about,” said Dacey. “That’s why we’re doing a lot of outreach right now, myself, we are doing this swing through.”
Dacey said the DNC is continuing to reach out to Asian Americans and the Asian Pacific Islander community through various groups and community organizations. They also correspond with weekly papers, radio stations and social media to spread information.
When it comes to the election cycles, primaries and nominations are often wrapped up before California’s June primaries but this time, with Bernie Sanders gaining some momentum against Hillary Clinton, there is a possibility that the Golden State can play a role in the Democratic race.
“Both candidates were recently here,” she said. “Whether it was a big rally, talked to individuals and had a very serious speech that secretary Clinton gave about the importance of what’s happening in our foreign policy, I think that clearly shows they’re invested in California.”
Leaders from both parties have come out to Los Angeles to do their own outreach.
Jason Chung, national director of the Asian Pacific American Initiatives for the Republican National Committee also came to California for outreach efforts. He joined Dacey at the Asian American justice conference, where they were part of a panel that unveiled new polling data on California’s Asian American voters.
Data showed that no matter the party–Democrat, Republican, or Independent–the state’s Asian American voters have similar priorities.
Immigration, education and health care are issues that are expected to bring them to the ballot boxes.