Grace Meng

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Grace Meng
Grace Meng Official Congressional Photo.jpg
Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee
Assumed office
February 25, 2017
Serving with Michael Blake, Ken Martin, and Maria Elena Durazo
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 6th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Preceded by Gregory Meeks
Member of the New York State Assembly
from the 22nd district
In office
January 1, 2009 – December 31, 2012
Preceded by Ellen Young
Succeeded by Michaelle Solages
Personal details
Born (1975-10-01) October 1, 1975 (age 42)
Queens, New York, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Wayne Kye
Children Tyler, Brandon
Residence Flushing, New York[1]
Alma mater University of Michigan (B.A.)
Yeshiva University (J.D.)
Profession Lawyer, politician
Website House website
Grace Meng
Chinese 孟昭文
Hanyu Pinyin Mèng Zhāowén

Grace Meng /ˈmɛŋ/ (Chinese: 孟昭文, born October 1, 1975) is an American lawyer and a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing New York's 6th congressional district in the New York City borough of Queens, which includes neighborhoods like Bayside, Flushing, Forest Hills, Rego Park, Fresh Meadows, Glendale, Kew Gardens, and Maspeth. Previously, she served as a member of the New York State Assembly, representing the 22nd assembly district in Flushing, Queens. She is the first Asian American to represent part of New York in Congress, and also current Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee.

Early life and education[edit]

Grace Meng was born on October 1, 1975 in Queens, where she was also raised.[2] She is of Taiwanese descent, and is the daughter of Jimmy Meng, an Assemblyman, and Shiao-Mei Meng.[3] She attended Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74 and is a graduate of Stuyvesant High School. She received a B.A. degree from the University of Michigan and a Juris Doctor from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University.[1]

New York Assembly[edit]

Elections[edit]

Grace Meng's father Jimmy Meng was elected in 2004 to New York's 22nd assembly district, becoming the first Asian American to be elected to the legislature in New York State history.[4] Jimmy served only one term, having decided to not run for re-election in 2006 following a scandal regarding election irregularities in his first campaign. He subsequently pleaded guilty to bribery charges. He only served one month in jail for his crime. Grace Meng decided to run to succeed her father, but was taken off the ballot when Democrat Ellen Young, challenged her residency status.[5] Subsequently her district residency issues were resolved.[6] Ellen Young succeeded Jimmy Meng in 2006.

In 2008, Grace decided to challenge Young again. On September 9, 2008, Grace defeated the incumbent in the Democratic primary 59%-41%.[7][8] She went on to win the 2008 November election, defeating Young again, this time as an Independence Party nominee, 88%-12%.[9] In 2010, she won re-election to a second term unopposed.[10][11][12]

In 2008, she was named one of City & State's "New York City Rising Stars: 40 Under 40" for being a young influential member in New York City politics.

Tenure[edit]

She was the author of the Reverse Mortgage Act of 2009, that prohibited proceeds received from reverse mortgages from being considered as income, so senior citizens can get their partial property tax exemption. Seven other of her pieces of legislation were signed into law.[13] In 2017, Meng boycotted Trump’s inauguration in protest to his inflammatory rhetoric. [14]

Committee assignments[edit]

  • Aging
  • Banks
  • Labor
  • Libraries and Education Technology
  • Real Property Taxation
  • Small Business[15]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

2012 election[edit]

In June 2012, Meng faced fellow Assembly member Rory Lancman and New York City Council member Elizabeth Crowley in a primary election for New York's 6th congressional district and won. She received the endorsement of the Queens County Democratic party.[16] On November 6, 2012, Meng won the race for New York Congressional District 6 against Republican member of the New York City Council Dan Halloran, making her the first Asian American elected to Congress from New York.[17]

Tenure[edit]

She was inaugurated on January 3, 2013. Meng has co-formed the Bipartisan Freshman Caucus saying “The American people are just sick and tired of blaming each other without getting anything done.”[18]

Her district includes the Queens neighborhoods of Auburndale, Bayside, Briarwood, Elmhurst, Flushing, Forest Hills, Fresh Meadows, Glendale, Kew Gardens, Kew Gardens Hills, Maspeth, Middle Village, and Rego Park.

On February 10, 2014, Meng introduced the bill To amend the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 to include the desecration of cemeteries among the many forms of violations of the right to religious freedom (H.R. 4028; 113th Congress) into the House.[19] The bill would amend the findings of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 by including the desecration of cemeteries among the various violations of the right to religious freedom.[19][20] Meng said that "this legislation would be a new and important tool in our fight against the desecration of cemeteries" because it would "combat religiously-motivated vandalism of cemeteries and also prevent developers from building over cemeteries, a new and emerging threat in places where there are no Jewish communities left to protect burial grounds."[21]

Representative Meng became Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in February 2017. Members of the Democratic Party elected her as DNC Vice Chair in Atlanta.[22]

Committee assignments[edit]

Caucus memberships[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Meng married Wayne Kye, a dentist of Korean descent, in June 2005.[3] The couple resides in Queens with their two sons, Tyler and Brandon.[1]

In November 2013, Meng was robbed and assaulted by a purse-snatcher in the Eastern Market area of Washington, D.C.[23] She suffered injuries to her head, left knee, hand, and face, and was treated at George Washington University hospital. The assailant stole her black Gucci tote bag.[23]

Meng's younger brother Andy is the former National Executive President for the Pi Delta Psi Fraternity. Andy Meng was charged in relation to a hazing incident that occurred at one of the fraternity's chapters at Baruch College. [24]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Grace Meng: Biography". New York State Assembly. Retrieved March 23, 2011. 
  2. ^ "State Assembly: Grace Meng (D), District 22". Capitol Info. Archived from the original on March 18, 2011. Retrieved March 23, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b "Grace Meng and Wayne Kye". The New York Times. June 12, 2005. Retrieved November 1, 2016. 
  4. ^ "First Asian American in the NY State Assembly", ChinaDaily, 05-11-2004. Retrieved on 16-02-2007
  5. ^ Stirling, Stephen (2008-07-25). "Young, Meng won't fight over primary signatures • TimesLedger". Timesledger.com. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  6. ^ "New York, 6th House District: Grace Meng (D)". NationalJournal.com. 2012-11-06. Archived from the original on 2015-01-10. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  7. ^ Noah C. Zuss, "Meng Beats Young in Primary for Flushing Seat." "Southeast Queens Press," Sept. 12-18, 2008, p. 11
  8. ^ "Ourcampaigns.com". Ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  9. ^ "Ourcampaigns.com". Ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  10. ^ "Election Results 2008: New York State Legislature". The New York Times. 2008. Archived from the original on May 11, 2012. Retrieved March 30, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Election Results 2010: New York State Legislature". The New York Times. 2010. Archived from the original on June 15, 2012. Retrieved March 30, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Ourcampaigns.com". Ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  13. ^ [1] Archived November 7, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ "Grace Meng Is Latest Elected Official to Boycott Trump Inauguration". DNAinfo New York. Archived from the original on 2017-01-26. 
  15. ^ "Grace Meng". Ballotpedia. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  16. ^ "Queens Democratic Leaders Back Meng For Congress". NY1. March 19, 2012. Archived from the original on January 28, 2015. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Grace Meng, Michael Grimm Win Seats In Congress". Archived from the original on 30 January 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2012. 
  18. ^ Schneier, David (2013-02-28). "Meng talks nation's business at 112th - Queens Chronicle: Central/Mid Queens News". Qchron.com. Retrieved 2014-08-13. 
  19. ^ a b "H.R. 4028 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  20. ^ Marcos, Cristina (23 May 2014). "Next week: Appropriations, VA reform, intelligence authorization". The Hill. Retrieved 29 May 2014. 
  21. ^ "House Passes Meng Legislation to Make Desecration of Cemeteries a Violation of Religious Freedom". Jewish Political News and Updates. 29 May 2014. Archived from the original on 29 May 2014. Retrieved 29 May 2014. 
  22. ^ https://observer.com/2017/02/nyc-congressman-and-assemblyman-score-dnc-vice-chairmanships/amp/
  23. ^ a b O'Keefe, Ed; Williams, Clarence (November 20, 2013). "Rep. Grace Meng attacked, robbed". Washington Post. Retrieved May 17, 2015. 
  24. ^ "5 People Charged in Baruch College Hazing Death". US News & World Report. 2015-09-15. Retrieved 2015-11-18. 

External links[edit]

New York Assembly
Preceded by
Ellen Young
New York State Assembly, 22nd District
2009–2013
Succeeded by
Michaelle Solages
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Gregory Meeks
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 6th congressional district

2013-Present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Current U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mark Meadows
R-North Carolina
United States Representatives by seniority
289th
Succeeded by
Luke Messer
R-Indiana