GLENDALE-The Armenian National Committee of America Wednesday announced its endorsement of Sen. Barack Obama for the Presidential primaries during a press conference Wednesday at the ANCA-WR Map Room attended by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and Los Angeles City Councilmember Eric Garcetti, among others.
The ANCA said that Obama was the Democratic candidate best positioned to bring fundamental change to how the United States addresses issues of special concern to Armenian American voters.
In a powerful statement, issued on January 20, Senator Obama voiced his strong support for passage of the Armenian Genocide Resolution (H.Res.106 & S.Res.106) currently before Congress, and pledged that, as President, he will recognize the Armenian Genocide. The Presidential hopeful also reaffirmed his support for a strong "US-Armenian relationship that advances our common security and strengthens Armenian democracy."
He also pledged to "promote Armenian security by seeking an end to the Turkish and Azerbaijani blockades, and by working for a lasting and durable settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict that is agreeable to all parties, and based upon America’s founding commitment to the principles of democracy and self determination."
As a Senator, Obama has spoken in support of U.S. affirmation of the Armenian Genocide and cosigned a letter urging President Bush to properly recognize the Armenian Genocide. He has forcefully called for the adoption of the Armenian Genocide Resolution, but has yet to formally cosponsor this legislation. While visiting Azerbaijan in August 2005, Sen. Obama was asked by reporters why he cosigned the letter to President Bush. Obama defended his decision by stating the genocide was a historical fact. The Illinois Senator publicly criticized the firing of former US Ambassador to Armenia John Evans, who was dismissed for speaking truthfully about the Armenian Genocide.
Also participating in the press conference were Armenia’s for Obama chairwoman Nora Hovsepian and ANCA-WR Board chairman Raffi Hamparian.
Armenian Americans, in key primary states and throughout the country, represent a motivated and highly networked constituency of more than one and a half million citizens. The ANCA mobilizes Armenian American voters through a network of over 50 chapters and a diverse array of affiliates, civic advocates, and supporters nationwide. ANCA mailings reach over a quarter of a million homes, and ANCA email updates and action alerts reach well over 100,000 more households. The ANCA website, which features election coverage from an Armenian American point of view, attracts over 100,000 unique visits a month. The ANCA also has broad reach to Armenian American voters via a sophisticated media operation of newspapers, regional cable shows, satellite TV, blogs, and internet news sites.