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The other New York: how Republicans made ‘shocking’ gains in the empire state

"That includes Yiatin Chu. At a Bensonhurst coffee shop called Cafe Gossip, Chu, a 55-year-old political activist, tells me how she was a liberal who went through a conservative awakening in the last few years. She says Asian immigrants have long been goaded into voting Democratic by non-profit social services, but in recent years voters like her have grown wrathful over bail reform, along with moves by Adams’ Democratic predecessor, Bill de Blasio, to open new homeless shelters and a high-rise jail in Chinatown. She’s even angrier over his proposal to end an admissions test that has enabled Asian American students to dominate the city’s top high schools. “It’s about self-interest and self-interest of your family, self-interest of your community,” Chu said. And the Republican party “is at the very least paying attention to us and talking to us”.


This year, Chu founded a political club called Asian Wave, which in November instructed thousands of voters through the Chinese messaging app WeChat to vote for Republicans down the line. One of them was a virtually unknown candidate named Lester Chang, who ended up toppling Peter Abbate, a Democratic state assemblyman who has represented Sunset Park and surrounding neighborhoods since 1987. "

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