U.S. Senator Charles Schumer Joins IAPAC Reception in New York City
New York, New York -The Iranian
American Political Action Committee (IAPAC) held its annual New York City
reception on July 22, 2007. The event, held at the home of Hamid and Laya
Biglari, brought together Iranian Americans from the tri-state area to discuss
IAPAC's role in enhancing Iranian American participation in the American
guest of the reception was Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY). A long time friend of
the Iranian American community, Schumer is the senior U.S. Senator from New
York, serving since 1999. In November 2006, he was elected to the new post of
Vice Chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus. In this position, he is the
third-ranking Democrat in the U.S. Senate, behind Senate Majority Leader Harry
Reid and Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin.
In his speech, Schumer
recognized the tremendous contributions of Iranian Americans to American
society. He thanked Iranian Americans for becoming a part of the U.S. and
encouraged them to actively participate in the American political process.
"America is a nation of volunteers. Volunteers create organizations like IAPAC
who are well respected and listened to," Schumer said.
Schumer went on
to acknowledge some of the immigration-related concerns of the Iranian American
community. He explained that the U.S. government must do everything in its power
to prevent the entry of terrorists into our nation. “At same time America should
not exclude those individuals who want to come to the United States to do good,”
Schumer said. He gave examples of how constituent representatives in his office
have dealt with a number of cases of Iranian nationals who had difficulties
securing visas, including a top-ranking executive from Deutsche Bank Group who
was a German citizen of Iranian descent.
Following his speech, Schumer
graciously and openly answered questions from the assembled guests. Before
leaving the reception, the senator took pictures and spoke individually with
many of the attendees.
Schumer's remarks were preceded by those of Mr.
Biglari. Biglari began the group discussion with an eloquent introduction,
welcoming the senator and sharing with him some related facts about the Iranian
American community. "As individuals, Iranian Americans have gained significant
achievements in all aspects of American life," he said.
2000 U.S. Census figures, which show Iranian Americans among the most educated
and affluent ethnic communities in the United States, as evidence of the
community's success. He gave details on how, three decades after the majority of
Iranian Americans arrived in the U.S., there is now a critical mass of
civic-minded individuals who have come together to promote greater cultural
understanding and give a voice to the community. Biglari acknowledged that IAPAC
has played an important role in enabling the Iranian American community to
influence the election of candidates for public office, and congratulated it for
developing and maintaining relationships with lawmakers.
IAPAC is a
registered bipartisan political action committee that contributes to candidates
for public office. IAPAC focuses exclusively on domestic policy issues, such as
civil liberties and immigration, and encourages Americans of Iranian descent to
actively participate in civic affairs.
IAPAC has contributed to 28
candidates, to the
National Republican Senatorial Committee, and to the Democratic Senatorial
Since its inception, IAPAC has leveraged
contributions to candidates by working with community non-profit organizations
to facilitate briefings on Capitol
Hill on civil liberties and immigration issues as they relate to the Iranian
American community. IAPAC has also worked with members of the House of
Representatives to introduce a resolution declaring
the Congress’ condemnation of discrimination against Iranian Americans in any
form, and has provided Iranian Americans with direct access to their
elected representatives by holding multiple formal and informal
... Payvand News - 8/1/07 ... --