HomeAsian AmericansNewly Elected Hmong Lawmakers Form Caucus

Newly Elected Hmong Lawmakers Form Caucus

Six new and incumbent Hmong lawmakers in the Minnesota Legislature announced that it will form a caucus to give a voice to their communities, reports the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.

The Minnesota Asian Pacific Caucus includes future Democratic Reps. Tou Xiong of Maplewood, Kaohly Her of St. Paul and Jay Xiong of St. Paul. They will join Sen. Foung Hawj, D-St. Paul, who was elected in 2012, and state Rep. Fue Lee, a Democrat from Minneapolis, according to the Star Tribune.

The incoming lawmakers are part of one of the fastest growing racial groups in the state. The Twin Cities Pioneer Press cites the statistic that from 2010 to 2017, Minnesota’s Asian population grew by 30 percent, to 280,841. The caucus will target issues like healthcare outcome disparity, language-learning resources, and access to quality education.

“We have arrived,” Jay Xiong wrote on his campaign website after his election victory. “We changed a narrative and chart a new chapter for all our communities.”

Rep.-elect Samantha Vang, a Brooklyn Center Democrat whose parents were Hmong refugees, called the new caucus “a force to be reckoned with.”

“This is a milestone for the Hmong community, the wider South Pacific community and people of color,” she said to the Star Tribune.

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