Kuderer Announces Endorsement From Leading Asian & Pacific Islander American Group


Senator Patty Kuderer, D-Bellevue, today announced that she has been endorsed by the Asian Pacific Islander Americans for Civic Empowerment, or APACE, in her campaign for re-election to the state Senate.

APACE’s roots lie in the Asian American movement of the 1960s, when Asian American & Pacific Islander activists founded its predecessor, the Asian Coalition for Equality (ACE). In 1997, ACE was reborn as APACE. Its resurgence was driven by the threat posed by Initiative 200 (I-200), which called for an end to affirmative action in Washington State. In just seventeen months, APACE built relationships with national political organizations and partnered with nineteen other groups in the fight against I-200. I-200 passed, despite forceful opposition by organizations representing people of color, women, and progressives.

“I’m tremendously proud to receive the support of APACE and communities of color across the district,” said Kuderer. “The 48th district includes some of the most diverse communities in our state, and our residents deserve leaders who will fight to make this a place where all people are welcome and get the support they need to succeed.  I’ve made it my life’s work to stand up for everybody, including communities of color, whether it’s against big corporations, big government, or big special interests, and I’ll always work to make sure every voice in our district gets heard in Olympia.”

“We deeply appreciate Patty’s work on issues critical to Asian American & Pacific Islander communities,” said Rick Polintan of APACE. “Whether it’s protecting our voting and civil rights, expanding access to health care, or helping make sure our kids get the great education they deserve, Patty has been the leader we need in the 48th district. She’s been a champion for the Asian American & Pacific Islander communities and we’re excited to help re-elect her this year. I saw Patty in action in Olympia where she played one of the major roles to make sure that the four Democracy Bills – Washington Voting Rights Act, Automatic Voter Registration, Same Day Voter Registration and Pre-Registration for 16 & 17 year olds – passed last legislative session”.

During the 2018 session, Kuderer and APACE worked together in support of repealing I-200. The initiative has had major negative impacts on communities of color. When I-200 passed in 1998, 50 percent of Native Americans were on track for college, but that dropped after the passage of I-200 to 38 percent. The total spent on government contracting for minority contractors was 13.3 percent in 1998, by 2004 this had dropped to 1.66 percent. And major opportunity gaps still exist by race when it comes to high school graduation and access to higher education. Kuderer and APACE both expressed hope that an I-200 repeal bill could come to the floor of the Senate for a vote in the 2019 legislative session.

Ballots are due for the primary election on August 7th.