October 24, 2004

AIN'T THAT AMERICA:

Chinese-American faces Iranian-born Republican (Patrick O'Connor, 10/24/04, The Hill)

Rep. David Wu (D-Ore.), who says he is the first and only Chinese-American to serve in the House, has raised funds from Chinese-Americans across the country. Now, his Iranian-born Republican challenger is using a similar tactic in her own fundraising.

Goli Ameri, a telecommunications consultant, has used her connections within the Iranian-American community to raise money for her campaign to unseat the third-term Democrat.

Ameri has raised over $550,000 from Iranian-Americans, according to her campaign.


Sit her next to Tancredo.

MORE:
GOP Shifts, Pursues Immigrant Votes (Jill Stewart, 10/22/04, Jewish Journal of Los Angeles)

Kermanian, an Iranian Jewish immigrant, is still rawly aware of how people’s lives in his native Iran are under the strict control of Islamist radicals.

“We understand what the president is doing, and we support him strongly,” said Kermanian, who stepped down as chairman of the Iranian American Jewish Federation in Los Angeles to join the Bush ’04 campaign team. “Immigrants look at how the world really is, so they no longer support just the Democrats.”

It was no surprise, then, when Bush spoke several words of Spanish during his nomination acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention (RNC) in New York City. The gesture went virtually unremarked by the media and caused nary a ripple of discernible backlash in his party.

Ten years ago, veering outside the English language to appeal to a special group of mostly Democratic voters would have been front-page news across the land, but today the imagery of the Republican leadership reaching out to heavily Democratic immigrants is not only commonplace, it’s indicative of a major shift in views and strategy.

When Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger told his up-by-his-bootstraps tale at the RNC, it was not merely a personal story from the Republican Party’s most famous moderate. It was also a direct appeal to immigrants, using the GOP’s message of personal responsibility and eventual triumph.

These two RNC moments are indicative of an almost imperceptible change inside the Republican Party to not only reach out to immigrants but to target the message and explain the GOP philosophy as never before. There may be only minor dividends to show for it this November, but Republicans are energized about their chance to make inroads with traditionally Democratic immigrant voters.

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 24, 2004 1:52 PM
Comments

If Wu truly is the first Chinese-American in the House, I'm surprised.
Given that the House is much easier to get into than the Senate, and that House districts are much smaller, and that there are three or four concentrations of Chinese in the US...

Maybe they got gerrymandered into dilution.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at October 24, 2004 3:14 PM

Goli Ameri (R) was endorsed two weeks ago by The Oregonian, which has since endorsed John Kerry. They ... The Oregonian ... also ran a hit piece last week on David Wu (D), reporting an unprosecuted sexual assault charge from his college days. Strange times.

Posted by: at October 24, 2004 3:25 PM

Off-topic, more or less, but something really _is_ happening in Hawaii. The Honolulu Star-Bulletin's new poll shows Bush ahead of Kerry 46%-45%:

http://starbulletin.com/2004/10/24/news/index2.html

Posted by: Joe at October 24, 2004 3:25 PM

Michael:

I think the late Patsy Mink (D. HI) was Chinese.

Posted by: Fred Jacobsen (San Fran) at October 24, 2004 7:29 PM

Patsy Mink, as it turns out, had Japanese ancestors.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at October 25, 2004 5:37 AM

Patsy Mink's maiden name was Takemoto, I think.

The only other Chinese to serve in Congress was Hiram Fong who was a GOP senator from Hawaii. Most Americans of Chinese ancestry are Cantonese and prefer to engage in entrepreneurial activity or medicine and the sciences, seeing government in all its glory as more nuisance than benefit. In Hawaii, whenever you see authority it has a Japanese face, but the business community is overwhelmingly Chinese.

Posted by: Bart at October 25, 2004 7:12 AM
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