City & State: A historic 6 Asian American candidates win in City Council primaries
Julie Won joins Linda Lee to become the first Korean Americans to serve on the City Council, in Queens District 26, representing Long Island City and Astoria, among other neighborhoods. She was an underdog in the race, as another candidate, Amit Bagga, was a seasoned political operative with ties to the de Blasio administration who had clinched several major endorsements. Won cited the city’s matching public funds program as a major factor allowing a greater number of diverse candidates to run. Won also touched on how the model minority myth has harmed Asian Americans by casting them as submissive or favorites, when Asian Americans comprise a large portion of people living below the poverty line. She is hopeful that with the greater diversity of the newly elected Asian Americans, will dispel the model minority myth as well as the idea of an “Asian monolith.” “We're going to have the diversity to really help people understand Asian Americans are not all Chinese and that we're not a monolith. We have all different kinds of skin tones, different facial features, etc,” Won said.