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Meng founds PAC to back female pols

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U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) launched a new political action committee last week that will contribute to the campaigns of young candidates from minority communities.

The PAC, called @theTable, will aim to empower women seeking office who might not have the tools to put together a successful campaign, Meng said.

“Some people don’t necessarily come with the institutional support that many candidates have. That was the case with me when I ran, so I want to help in any way to make their runs successful,” Meng said in a telephone interview. “We hope to benefit anyone who traditionally who has not had a seat at the table politically.”

Meng, a mother of two, was elected to represent District 6 in 2012 as the state’s first Asian-American congresswoman.

Determined to help more women ascend to leadership positions across the nation, Meng decided to start the PAC after a number of freshman congressional members running for re-election this year approached her for help. Only 19 percent of Congress members are women, Meng said.

“You are either at the table making the decisions or on the menu,” she said.

Meng said the PAC hopes to influence the race to replace long-serving U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), who recently resigned after four decades in Congress.

The congresswoman said she was not sure how the PAC would benefit her own career, as @theTable is new and still in its first stages.

When asked if the PAC would be open to contributing to Republican campaigns, Meng said, “We’re going to focus on Democrats for now.”

Reach reporter Alex Robinson by e-mail at arobinson@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.

Updated 8:26 am, February 19, 2014
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