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On Friday, May 28, Axios business reporter Hope King, executive editor Sara Kehaulani Goo and Axios Today host Niala Boodhoo discussed sustaining momentum beyond this month and this year, spotlighting philanthropic, media and grassroots leaders, featuring Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Georgia Advancing Progress PAC chair Cam Ashling, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta executive director Stephanie Cho, actor and producer Daniel Dae Kim, Welcome to Chinatown co-founder Victoria Lee and the Asian American Foundation president Sonal Shah.

  • Sonal Shah on educating people about the Asian-American experience: "We need to educate others about our communities, who we are, what we are. We are part of the American story. We are living the American story and making sure that the Asian-American story is part of that story."
  • Daniel Dae Kim on representation in media: "42% of Americans can't name a single prominent Asian-American...We're really talking about a real gap...One task in this mission is to create that narrative, to change our perceptions in the media, to recreate our story, and to make sure that we have an education that doesn't allow us to be invisible in the future."
  • Sen. Mazie Hirono on the passage of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Bill: "This was really important for the AAPI community to have the Senate [and] the House...stand with the AAPI community. Something that was so important to the community that has often felt invisible."
  • Stephanie Cho on the Asian-American electorate in the Southeast: "[There is] a coming age of the Asian-American electorate here...I think we're going to start to see more and more participation despite all of the voter suppression bills. Honestly, Georgia has been a test state for these voter suppression bills. And in spite of all of that, the Asian-American community, the larger BIPOC community overall has increasingly stepped up and really activated our bases."
  • Victoria Lee on equity in grassroots organizing: "We have to have a hyper-local approach. We don't assume technology access. We don't assume language access. Much of our work means what we need to go door to door, give out fliers and ensure that there's something written."
  • Cam Ashling on building lasting political power: "In Georgia, the Asian-American vote was the margin of victory for Biden. And we were a huge part of the Senate wins, too. So we know we have political power now and we know we can make a difference."

Go deeper

Sep 9, 2021 - Podcasts

Brutal crackdowns as Afghanistan gets a new government

The Taliban yesterday announced the first members of a new temporary Afghan government. And as Axios’ national security reporter Zach Basu writes, the interim cabinet is made up of mostly “old-guard Taliban officials.”

  • Plus, disappointing jobs numbers with some glimmers of hope.
  • And, actor Simu Liu on turning a movie into a movement.

Guests: Axios' Zachary Basu, Kate Marino, and Hope King.

Credits: Axios Today is produced in partnership with Pushkin Industries. The team includes Niala Boodhoo, Sara Kehaulani Goo, Dan Bobkoff, Alexandra Botti, Nuria Marquez Martinez, Sabeena Singhani, and Michael Hanf. Music is composed by Evan Viola. You can reach us at podcasts@axios.com. You can text questions, comments and story ideas to Niala as a text or voice memo to 202-918-4893.

Go deeper:

Multiple civil rights groups sue Texas after voting restrictions become law

From second from right: Texas Reps. Al Green and Sheila Jackson Lee, NAACP President Derrick Johnson, Rev. Al Sharpton and Martin Luther King III participate in the March On for Washington and Voting Rights to call on the Senate to pass voting rights legislation. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Civil rights groups filed a slew of lawsuits in Texas on Tuesday, kicking off what is expected to be an extensive legal battle mere hours after Gov. Greg Abbott signed controversial voting restrictions into law.

Why it matters: Critics have denounced the new law as a dangerous voter suppression bill that will disproportionately impact communities of color. The bill drove Texas House Democrats to flee the state in protest, but after enough returned to resume quorum, the legislation went to Abbott's desk.

WHO warns against travel bans on southern African countries

Matshidiso Moeti, World Health Organization regional director for Africa. Photo: Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

The World Health Organization called on countries Sunday to not impose travel bans on southern African nations amid concerns over the new COVID-19 Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The U.S. and countries in Europe and the Asia-Pacific announced travel restrictions in response to Omicron, which was first detected in South Africa. It's since spread to several European countries, Canada, Israel, Australia and Hong Kong. The WHO noted in a statement that only two southern African nations have detected the new variant.