NEW YORK, NY (TIP): With a broad progressive coalition, and widespread support based on a record of delivering real results, former City Comptroller and Councilman John Liu, May 22, announced the launch of his campaign for the 11th State Senate District in Queens. In recent weeks, Liu has been buoyed by the overwhelming support from local elected officials, Democratic Party leaders and a host of prominent community activists who encouraged him to enter the primary. “I humbly declare my candidacy for the State Senate to represent northeast Queens, where I’ve lived and grown up my whole life and am now raising my own family,” said Liu.
“This community is bedrock of New York, and the people here rightfully demand and deserve effective results-oriented representation. I offer my legislative experience and fiscal expertise to solve issues, from quality of life concerns to deep economic inequities. In the State Senate, I will tirelessly fight for a real minimum wage, rights for working people, women’s equality and resources for public schools, transportation and healthcare. Over the next several months, I will take my message straight to the voters of Senate District 11 to ask for your support.” There will be major announcements to come, including details on the official campaign kickoff this week.
The first Asian American to have been elected to citywide office, John Liu has always been a fighter for the hardworking people of this city, first as a member of the New York City Council, then as City Comptroller. The 43rd Comptroller of New York City, John Liu established an impressive record as the chief financial officer for 8.4 million residents and overseeing municipal government with an annual budget of $70 billion.
John saved taxpayers $5 billion through rigorous audits of City agencies, detailed scrutiny of contracts with private companies, and refinancing of $20 billion of outstanding City bond debt. During his four-year term of office, he achieved an enviable total investment return, increasing the City’s pension asset portfolio to $150 billion. John created the nationally acclaimed online application “CheckbookNYC.com” providing unprecedented transparency in government spending.
He facilitated economic development and new job creation with acceleration of City capital projects, capturing low interest rates in the bond markets. Always emphasizing that “it’s not just about numbers, it’s about people,” John Liu championed fairness and equality. An early and staunch opponent of stop-and-frisk tactics, John highlighted the risks to communities and taxpayers alike due to damaged police-community relations.
John presented daily-updated M/WBE Report Cards for City agencies to monitor and encourage greater government contracting opportunities for minority entrepreneurs. John also proposed sound economic policies to create real economic growth and narrow the ever-widening wealth gap, protected wage standards and recouped back wages and fines on behalf of cheated workers from contractors who just don’t want to play by the rules, and exposed the billions of dollars in publiclysubsidized corporate welfare doled out by the City that failed to deliver on promised new jobs and fair housing.
As a member of the New York City Council, John Liu represented his hometown of Flushing and northeast Queens. He secured millions of dollars in additional funding for schools, libraries, parks, senior citizen centers, and youth programs. John served as chairperson of the Council’s Transportation Committee overseeing operations of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Department of Transportation, and Taxi and Limousine Commission, and enacted legislation boosting efficiency and efficacy of key City agencies.
John’s significant accomplishments as a legislator include exposing financial irregularities at the MTA, enacting legislation like the Equal Access Bill mandating on-demand language services in health and human services agencies, the School Zone Engine Idling Bill limiting engine idling near schools, and the Dignity for All Schools Act requiring the Department of Education to track bullying and harassment in schools.
Hailed as a “Trailblazer” and “Pioneer,” John’s historic elections – as the first Asian American to win legislative office in New York and the first to win citywide office – were milestones for Asian Americans in New York and across the nation. Although he wishes Asian Americans had been elected long before, John is honored to be the first and embraces the opportunity to broaden representation and public service.
John Liu emigrated from Taiwan at the age of five. He was educated in New York public schools, including Hunter College High School, Bronx High School of Science, and Binghamton University, attaining his degree in Mathematical Physics. John lives in Flushing with his wife Jenny and their son Joey.