May 13, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Exclusive: Hillary Clinton to speak at AAPI unity summit next week

Photo of a masked Hillary Clinton walking up the stairs

Photo: Melina Mara - Pool via Getty Images

Hillary Clinton will join a slew of lawmakers and advocates at the progressive AAPI Victory Alliance group's summit on AAPI political power next week.

Why it matters: Amid a yearlong surge in anti-Asian hate, the summit aims to cultivate growing AAPI electoral power and increase visibility of AAPI issues.

The Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Unity Summit will take place on May 19.

  • "AAPIs are rising -- we are turning violence into victory and we are going to play a forceful role in American politics in the years to come," AAPI Victory Alliance executive director Varun Nikore said.

What she's saying: "AAPI electoral power is on the rise and it’s time AAPI communities get the same recognition, resources, and support as every other ethnic group," Clinton said in a statement.

  • "AAPIs are diverse and growing communities with their own set of challenges and opportunities, and we need to acknowledge that and work to empower them in diverse ways."

AAPI Victory Alliance has also invited eight U.S. senators of color to engage in a dialogue about coalition-building at the summit. They include:

  • Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)
  • Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Calif.)
  • Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.)
  • Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii)
  • Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.)
  • Sen. Catherine Cortez-Masto (D-Nev.)
  • Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.)
  • Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.)

The senators have floated the idea of formally creating a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) Caucus, per Washington Post.

The big picture: AAPI voters turned out in record numbers in 2020 and played a role in Democratic wins, according to community organizers.

Go deeper