80-20 Initiative

Once 80-20 endorses a candidate, it organizes Asian American bloc votes for its endorsed candidate, relying partly on volunteers, ethnic media radio, print and TV ads; and mostly on its e-mail communication with its 700,000 Asian American supporters, their families and their friends.

Based on publicly available government statistics, Asian Americans have the lowest chance of rising to management when compared with blacks, Hispanics and women in spite of having the highest educational attainment.

80-20 compiled these data which has been verified in writing by the Chief Statistician of EEOC, Ronald Edwards, into charts; and on September 6, 2006, 80-20 took out a full page Ad in the Washington Post in effort to educate the general public.

Subsequently, the ad was read into the Congressional Record by Senator Tom Carper of Delaware.

Executive Order 11246 signed into law in 1965, requires equal employment opportunity and prohibits discrimination. This law has been enforced for all except Asian Americans, as evidence by the low glass ceiling still hanging over this ethnic minority. Prior to election 2008, in its effort to shatter this glass ceiling, 80-20 obtained written commitments from nine of the eleven Democratic Presidential candidates, including then Senator Barack Obama and Senator Joe Biden, to enforce EO 11246 for All Asian Americans.

While Asian Americans make up 5% of the US population in 2008, only eight of the 867 (less than 1%) Article III Federal judges are Asian Americans.

During the 2008 Presidential campaign, to remedy the underrepresentation of Asian Americans in the Federal judiciary, 80-20 sent out a questionnaire to all the Presidential candidates. Senator Obama and Senator Biden responded and promised in writing to increase the appointment of Asian American federal judges. 

By June 2010, President Obama has nominated six Asian Americans to a seat on the U.S. District Court, including Judge Jacqueline Nguyen and Dolly M. Gee for the United States District Court for the Central District of California, and Judges Edward M. Chen and Lucy H. Koh for the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, Edmond Chang for the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, and Judge Leslie E. Kobayashi for United States District Court for the District of Hawaii.

On October 6, 2009, President Obama nominated Judge Denny Chin to a seat on the U.S. Courts of Appeals in the Second Circuit, the first Asian American Appeals court judge to be nominated since 1996, more than 12 years ago. This was followed on February 24, 2010 by the nomination of Goodwin H. Liu to a seat on the U.S. Courts of Appeals in the Ninth Circuit.

As of December 18, 2010, all of the above nominations have been confirmed by the Senate except for the nominations of Edward Chen and Goodwin Liu.