“We do not take democracy for granted. We feel it grow in our working together—many millions of us working toward a common purpose. If it took us several decades of sacrifice to arrive at this faith, it is because it took us that long to know what part of America is ours.”

—Carlos Bulosan, America Is in the Heart

The stakes in the 2020 elections here in Oregon and across the nation are high. As voters, we will have a monumental choice—do we settle for more of the same or something new, something bigger, something different for our politics? Portland, Beaverton, Multnomah County and Washington County are growing and changing rapidly. The decisions we make in 2020 will shape our region for decades to come.

It is up to us in 2020 to decide what that future looks like.  Do we come together to confront the issues of rising rents, jobs that don’t pay enough, and a criminal justice system that focuses too much on criminality and not enough on justice? Or do we disengage and let our environment be destroyed, our health care taken away, our immigrant family, friends and neighbors threatened because of the language that they speak?  

APANO stands with the progressive Asian and Pacific Islander (API) community to unite in the fight for social justice—for everyone. As part of that fight, we must show up at the ballot for the issues and people we believe in. 

APANO is embarking on its 5th election cycle. Since March 2017, when we announced the formation of our 501(c)4 organization, we’ve made great strides in showing what APANO and our community can win at the ballot. In May 2018, 6 of the 7 candidates that APANO endorsed won, and some even made history. In the big November 2018 general election, all 14 of the ballot measures and candidate campaigns that APANO worked on came out on the winning end. And in May 2019, APANO helped elect one of the most diverse slates of school board and local office candidates this state has ever seen.

This May 2020, we will be making additional candidate endorsements and focusing our efforts in the following 12 Priority Races for the May 19, 2020 Primary Elections:


  • Oregon Secretary of State Democratic Primary

Portland and Multnomah County

  • Portland Mayor (at-large)
  • Portland City Council Position 1 (at-large)
  • Portland City Council Position 4 (at-large)
  • Multnomah County Commissioner 3 (SE Portland)
  • Multnomah County Commissioner 4 (East County)
  • Metro Council District 6 (NE/SE Portland)
  • Multnomah District Attorney (at-large)

Beaverton and Washington County

  • Oregon House District 28 (S Beaverton)
  • Oregon Senate District 14 (Beaverton)
  • Washington County Commissioner Position 1 (Central Beaverton)
  • Metro Council District 3 (S Beaverton, Tigard, Tualatin)

Continuing our critical electoral and candidate endorsement work builds API political power in Oregon. In determining which races APANO should engage in, we consider several factors, including our organizational capacity and impact, and the following criteria:

  • Elected position purview and potential ability to impact or influence API lives
  • APANO members in district, concentration of Asian and Pacific Islanders, and opportunity to grow our base and for APIs to work on campaigns
  • APANO issue campaign or concerns, including national issues, at stake in district
  • Asian and Pacific Islander and People of Color candidates in district
  • APANO can make a difference in the race; it is a close, competitive race
  • Strengthens APANO’s long-term capacity and growth

If you are a candidate who is running for an elected office for which APANO is making endorsements, please read our Candidate Endorsement Packet and fill out our Candidate Endorsement Interview Request Form to begin the process of earning APANO’s endorsement! Applications are due on Tuesday, January 7, 2020.

Our API votes matter. Our values-led work matters. Come support the fight for May. 

If you want to learn more or get involved with our candidate endorsement process or our greater c4 political program, please do not hesitate to contact Robin Ye, Political Director, at robin@apano.org.

This programming message is brought to you by APANO, a 501c4 nonprofit organization.