Judy Chu, Mark Takano, Ted Liu, Grace Meng and over 40 Democrats join Congressman John Lewis' boycott

Four Asian American Congressional Representatives and 40 other Democrats will boycott Donald Trump’s inauguration as the next President of the United States.

The Democrats boycotting the inauguration, which takes place today 20 January, stand in solidarity with civil rights icon and Georgia congressman John Lewis, who Trump branded as “talk, talk, talk”, saying he should “finally focus on the burning and crime infested inner-cities.”

Amongst the 45 Democrats boycotting the traditional Presidential event are three East Asian Congressional Representatives.

Judy Chu

Judy Chu, the first Chinese-American woman elected to the US Congress currently serves as the US Representative for California’s 27th congressional district. Chu has been serving Congress since 2009 and has an impressive political history, serving as Chair of the California Board of Equalization as well as on the Garvey Unified School District Board of Education, the Monetery Park City Council and the California State Assembly.

Chu was appointed as Barack Obama’s Us Secretary of Labor in 2009, defeating Republican candidate Betty Tom Chu.

The Congresswoman’s parents came from Xinhui, Guangdong, where they married in 1948. Chu grew up in Los Angeles near 62nd Street and Normandie Avenue.

In a tweet, Chu declared she will not be attending Trump’s inauguration with the hashtag #StandWithJohnLewis.

Mark Takano

Mark Takano has been serving as the United States Representative for California’s 41st congressional district since 2013. He became the first openly gay person of Asian heritage in Congress upon taking office. Prior to his position in Congress, Takano also served on the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees since 1990.

Takano is of Japanese heritage. His grandparents immigrated to the United States, making him Sansei. Takano was born in Riverside, California in 1960.

In a tweet, Takano said he will stand with John Lewis in not attending Trump’s inauguration.

Ted Lieu

Ted Lieu has been representing California’s 33rd congressional district since 2015. A previous California State Senator, Lieu represented the 28th Senate District from February 2011 to November 2014. The Congressman was also a California state Assemblyman, representing the 53rd Assembly District between September 2005 to November 2010.

Lieu was born in Taipei, Taiwan but grew up in Cleveland Ohio. Graduating from Stanford University in 1991 with a BS in Computer Science and an AB in Political Science, Lieu went on to graduate magna cum laude with a JD from Georgetown University Law Center in 1994.

Lieu also holds the rank of Colonel in the US Air Force Reserves and served on active duty for 4 years as a member of the JAG Corps.

In his tweet, Lieu attached a link to a press release that detailed why he is choosing to boycott the inauguration. “For me, the personal decision not to attend Inauguration is quite simple: Do I stand with Donald Trump, or do I stand with John Lewis?  I am standing with John Lewis.”

Grace Meng

Grace Meng has been representing New York’s 6th congressional district in the New York City of Queens since 2013. From 2009-2013, Meng represented the 22nd assembly district in Flushing, Queens. She was the first Asian American to represent part of New York in Congress.

Meng was born in Queens and is of Chinese heritage. She is the daughter of Assmeblyman Jimmy Meng who was elected in 2004 to New York’s 22nd assembly district, making him the first Asian American to be elected to the legislature in New York State history. However, Jimmy Meng was incarcerated for one month after pleading guilty to bribery charges so only served one term.

In a tweet, Grace Meng wrote “I will not be attending the inauguration of @realDonaldTrump” and attatched her statement, in which she wrote, “I have heard from many constituents and I thought long and hard about this decision,” she noted. “I respect the office of the President and our nation’s peaceful transfer of power.”

She added it is impossible to  “tolerate attacks on women, minorities or a civil rights icon.”