Rep. Honda endorsement statement for Jerry Brown for CA Governor

For Immediate Release

Contact:   Michael Shank

“As California comes down to the wire in choosing our next Governor – one who will free this state of its financial fetters and forge a new way forward, each endorsement matters mightily.  Serving as the Chairman of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, there is little surprise behind my wholehearted endorsement of Democratic Candidate Jerry Brown.  As Governor, Jerry Brown appointed an unprecedented number of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs), over 250, to government positions, boards and commissions – more than any Governor in California’s history.   Under Governor Jerry Brown’s leadership, we benefited from the first AAPIs to head California state departments and serve on University of California’s Board of Regents, the first two Chinese Americans to serve on the California Court of Appeals, the first Japanese American woman judge in California, and the first Filipino American to serve on the Superior Court in U.S. history.”

“Jerry Brown earned my support with his history of aggressively and effectively focusing on the needs of our AAPI community – all within one of the most diverse administrations in the nation.  For example, Brown implemented the nation’s first anti-redlining measure, prohibiting lenders from denying loans based on a neighborhood’s ethnic makeup.  Brown boosted economic empowerment opportunities for AAPIs by lowering taxes for, and by making loans more accessible to, AAPI small businesses.  Brown increased educational opportunities for AAPI communities by nearly quadrupling K-12 education funding and doubling higher education funding.”

“Jerry Brown’s record of accomplishment for our community matters.  So when it comes to electing a governor who will actively respect and reaffirm the rights and responsibilities of the AAPI community, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Results are what count, not rhetoric. Proof is what is important, not party politics.  This is why I was so disappointed with 80/20’s lack of vision in their recent decision to endorse Brown’s opponent, who has no real track record of accomplishment in addressing the needs of the AAPI community.   For any thoughtful Asian American, keen on discerning who is deserving of AAPI support, to ignore the “walk” in favor of mere “talk”, is disconcerting.  A campaign’s capacity to fill out a questionnaire – especially when matched against an excessively wealthy opponent who has spent in historic proportions – is no indication whatsoever of that candidate’s propensity to promote AAPI-friendly policies.  Failure to ferret out this truth does not well serve California’s AAPI community and is an offense to thoughtful civic engagement.  AAPIs deserve better, not only from their candidates, but from their community leaders as well. Jerry Brown embraced the goals of 80/20’s honorable pursuit of the empowerment of AAPIs during a time when AAPIs were invisible from the process – because he embraced the value of diversity.”

“It is time to bring Brown back.”

US Congressman Michael Honda (CA-15)

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