Sunday, November 23, 2014

Asian Americans give new face to county GOP

(Left to Right) Young Kim, Michelle Steel, Janet Nguyen and Ling-Ling Chang at a dinner gathering. Photo courtesy of Shawn Steel / Voice of OC

Five high-profile Asian women -- all Republicans -- dominated Orange County races Tuesday night, with three candidates elected to state office and two to the county Board of Supervisors. Supervisor Janet Nguyen, whose family fled Vietnam as refugees, won a seat in the State Senate.

Former Congressional aide Young Kim, a South Korean immigrant, and Diamond Bar councilwoman Ling-Ling Chang, a Taiwanese American, were both elected to the State Assembly. Korean-born Board of Equalization member Michelle Park Steel and Dana Point Mayor Lisa Bartlett, a Japanese-American, also won seats on the Board of Supervisors. 

In Orange County and nationwide, party leaders are co-opting Democrats’ strategy of identity politics with hopes of changing perceptions of the GOP as anti-immigrant and unwelcoming to women and minority voters.

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