Later in the day, as the march was winding down, a spirit of celebration was still in the air for AAPIs who voted for Trump and came into town to witness his inauguration.
More than 400 people were expected to attend the Asian-American Presidential Inaugural Gala at the Park Hyatt Washington Saturday night, just a mile away from the White House.
The five-hour event was supported in part by the National Republican Asian Assembly, founded in 1986. Trump’s Transportation Secretary nominee Elaine Chao and U.N. Ambassador nominee Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina were invited, but neither was expected to attend. Both were still awaiting Senate confirmation.
Alfred H. Liu, national chairman of the assembly, told NBC News he believes that Asian values of “self-determination” and “self-reliance” gel with those of the Republican party. And for an electorate that decades ago once leaned Republican, Liu said he believes Trump’s election marks a turning point to win back that bloc.
“I think there’s an opportunity now,” he said…
KV Kumar, national co-chairman of the National Republican Asian Assembly, told NBC News that Trump’s presidency reflects the fact that “people are tired of the establishment.”
“The same people from the same groups become president, sons, daughters, what not,” Kumar said. “We have a lot of competent people in this world. I will promise you things will change with Trump being there.”
Kumar also said he believes most Asians are Republicans when it comes to issues, such as being family-oriented and having safer places to live.