Our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the victims of last night’s Monterey Park mass shooting in what was supposed to be a joyous evening of Lunar New Year celebrations. We hope for a full recovery by those injured and embrace the community as it heals from this tragedy.
Georgia voters yesterday returned CAPA21-endorsed Senator Raphael Warnock to the U.S. Senate and gave Democrats a 51-49 majority. With this race and the outcomes finally decided in numerous Congressional races, we can now share a more complete picture of how our endorsed candidates fared in the 2022 elections.
First, we want to congratulate Rep. Ted Lieu on his election as Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, becoming the first Asian American elected as Vice Chair and the highest-ranking Asian American in House Democratic leadership history. CAPA21 was proud to endorse Rep. Lieu and donate to his campaign and leadership committees throughout the years.
Our goal heading into this political cycle was to wisely use the resources provided to us by our donors and strategically target key contests and the AAPI political ground operations that would activate voters to support Democratic candidates.
Generous donors deeply concerned about the future of our country contributed to CAPA21 and empowered us to give nearly $200,000 to candidates in close races where AAPI voters could make an impact, in contests that would determine control of the U.S. Senate, fight for the House, and to electeds who play significant leadership roles.
CAPA21 donated more than $100,000 to AAPI voter engagement programs across the country, prioritizing Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Nevada, and Orange County in California. More on this later in the post.
These contributions were made possible through a large and dedicated group of generous donors led by Raymond L. Ocampo Jr. and Sandra O. Ocampo and CAPA21 Co-Chair Tamlyn Tomita and Daniel Blinkoff. See the complete list of our 2021-2022 donors at https://capa21.com/donors.
After the general election, CAPA21 donors also contributed nearly $10,000 directly to the campaigns of Senators Warnock, Mark Kelly, and Catherine Cortez-Masto through a special donation page hosted by CAPA21. Since we had already given the maximum amount for the run-off election, this direct donation effort allowed us to direct additional resources to the campaign.
An election eve poll conducted by the AAPI Civic Engagement Fund showed that Asian American voters once again overwhelmingly favored Democratic candidates and core Democratic policies in the 2022 midterm elections and rejected Trump and the supposed red wave.
This is a summary of how CAPA21-endorsed candidates fared in Tuesday’s general election and a preview of what’s next. As always, no election result is final until certified and we may still see surprises in some races.
UPDATE (11/10/22): In our Nov. 9 update, we incorrectly wrote that Jay Chen lost to Rep. Michelle Steel. With only 55% of the votes counted, the race for California’s 45th Congressional District is too early to call. Election results take time. It means our democracy is working. We must ensure we are counting every vote.
The ‘Red Wave’ didn’t reach the shore. Many observers expected a blowout by the GOP across and up and down the field. The Democrats are still expected the lose the House, but by a much smaller margin. Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada will determine control of the Senate. “How Democrats Avoided a Red Wave” in The Atlantic has one analysis.
CAPA21 will donate again to Senator Warnock in a run-off. It appears that Sen. Warnock will not reach the 50 percent vote threshold and there will be a run-off election on December 6. This a considered a new election with the same contribution limits as general and primary elections. CAPA21 prepared for this possibility and will donate $5,000 to support Sen. Warnock. We will also confer with the groups on the ground we supported to assess additional support.
We are disappointed in Stacy Abrams’s loss in the governor’s race. We will explore postmortems illuminating what happened in Georgia, but are heartened that the Asian American Advocacy Fund and the other grassroots organizations we supported helped turn out 54% support by Asian Americans for Abrams and an amazing 59% support for Warnock, the highest support level among ethnic groups after the African American vote.
Amazing Pennsylvania comeback by Fetterman. CAPA21-endorsed Senate candidate Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (and Josh Shapiro’s win in the governor’s race) shocked the country and created a critical buffer for Senate control since this race is a flip. We supported Fetterman with the maximum donation and also gave the Asian Pacific Islander Political Alliance in Pennsylvania $20,000 as we knew this would be a critical race. APIPA reports that they ran the largest Asian American direct voter contact program in U.S. history, knocking on more than 130,000 doors and making more than two million phone calls.
We’re proud to see our endorsed candidates Senator Tammy Duckworth (IL), Senator Maggie Hassan (NH), and Senator Alex Padilla (CA) win their respective races and especially congratulate Senator Padilla on being the first Latino elected to the U.S. Senate from California! We’re disappointed that Mandela Barnes (WI), Cheri Beasley (NC), and Tim Ryan (OH) lost their races, but each of them ran strong and admirable campaigns.
On the House side, CAPA21-endorsed Rep. Andy Kim survived a brutal challenge from the GOP establishment and former state Sen. Jill Tokuda will be the newest Member of Congress from Hawai‘i. Rep. Mary Peltola (AK) is at 47% with 75% of votes counted and is expected to win. Rep. Mark Takano, Rep. Judy Chu, Rep. Grace Meng, and Rep. Pramila Jayapal won re-election as expected. The other California Congressional candidates we supported are still in races too early to call.
While CAPA21 is focused primarily on federal races, we invested in a few key state races other than the Stacy Abrams contest in Georgia. CAPA21 supported Stephanie Nguyen’s candidacy for California Assembly and it appears she’s headed to a win, filling the absence of any Democratic AAPI women in the California state Legislature. We also contributed to the Michigan State Senate races with Stephanie Chang and Sam Singh victories, helping Democrats take control of the state Senate for the first time in 38 years.
What’s Next. Ron DeSantis’s overwhelming win in Florida and Trump’s negative impact on the midterms sets the stage on the GOP side for 2024. If Democrats hold the Senate and lose the House, we will see MAGA Republicans in the House tie up the government for the next two years. We also need to start evaluating President Biden’s next two years.
We will continue to monitor the undecided contests and provide another update when we know more.
~ Dale, Maeley, Ginger, Tamlyn
Since 1988, the leaders and donors powering CAPA21 have worked to register more AAPI voters and build the capacity and infrastructure of local AAPI organizations to support our AAPI community. However, the last six years have been the most difficult and this election may set the stage for the future of our democracy.
During the last two years, we targeted close races where AAPIs can make a difference through donations to candidates, and also to AAPI voter organizations that can influence those races.
We donated $168,600 to candidates in the 2021-2022 cycle and share below some highlights of our contributions to ground operations.
CAPA21 Donated $100,000 to AAPI Voter Engagement
Fueled by contributions from our fantastic donors (https://capa21.com/donors) , CAPA21 was able to invest $100,000 in efforts at the national, state, and local levels designed to engage and turn out Asian American and Pacific Islander voters.