Thursday, November 6, 2008
HUGE VOTER TURNOUT FOR FILIPINO AMERICANS
FILVOTE CONDUCTS PHONE BANKING ON ELECTION DAY: HUGE VOTER TURNOUT FOR FILIPINO AMERICANS
LOS ANGELES, CA, November 4, 2008– The Filipino-American Service Group, Inc. (FASGI) through its nonpartisan voter engagement project, FILVOTE, conducted a phone banking drive to encourage Filipino-Americans to go out and vote on Election Day. This drive was started a week before Election day and peaked during the day itself. FASGI volunteers and staff spearheaded the drive and called everyone on its registered voter list. Most of these people were assisted by FILVOTE to register or reregister to vote.
Majority of the volunteers at FASGI noted that at 1030a.m. most of the Fil-Ams they called already voted and the small percentage that didn’t vote yet said that they are on their way to their designated precincts. Mr.. Peping Baclig, a Filipino-American Veteran, called mostly the Filipino Veteran American seniors, he said that almost all of them already voted through the vote by mail or permanent absentee vote. They collectively observed that there was an unprecedented enthusiasm and excitement among the Filipino-Americans to participate on this election.
There were a lot of first time voters. Those that just felt that they have a need to participate on this historic election. According to one first time voter, Maria Corazon Paus, who was recently naturalized as an American Citizen on October 9, 2008, “I am elated to participate and feel the benefits of being an American, to have a voice in the process of selecting a new leader to guide the course of this Country I now call mine.” She said her wait to vote was not that long, about 15mins at the Knights of Columbus precinct at Temple Street in Los Angeles. She was there in line at 9 a.m. Although she voted Republican she says she is happy that Barack Obama won because “he has given a lot of Americans hope for a better future” she goes further “I am very happy that I cast my vote, even if my candidate lost, I feel that I still won, we all won.”
It is evident from this election that a huge turnout of Filipino Americans came out and voted. This is a departure from the perception that Fil-Ams are apathetic to the American Democratic process.