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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Young Kim Confronts Racist Colleague

At Politico, Olivia Beavers and Nicholas Wu report on Rep. Young Kim (R-CA):
Even Kim’s symbolic role is complicated, though. She is a prominent Asian American in a party struggling to allay fears among voters of color, including Asian Americans, that Republicans are focused on white voters and overly tolerant of racial bigotry and xenophobia.

A recent blowup on Capitol Hill illustrated this tension in wrenching terms: When Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas) questioned the national loyalty of a leading Asian American Democrat, the U.S.-born Rep. Judy Chu of California, Kim sought a private meeting with Gooden. She did not call him out publicly at the time, but said during an interview in Seoul that his comments were inappropriate.

“Lance, out of nowhere, started attacking her loyalty. So I said ‘no.’ Whether or not she is a Democrat or Republican, it didn’t matter,” Kim said. “Don’t question someone’s loyalty when she is born in the U.S., and she has served honorably in her position.”

Responding to a request for comment, Gooden showed no contrition and instead chastised Kim.

“Rep. Kim requested this private meeting and I believed it was to remain private,” Gooden said in a statement. “She has betrayed the trust of our visit but as a now-undeserved courtesy to her, I will not further broach some of the other things she said.”