SAN FRANCISCO–Congresswoman Anna Eshoo spent an evening dining and discussing current events with Bay Area Armenian-Americans at a fund-raising gathering organized by the South Bay Armenian National Committee. The successful event which was generously hosted by Dr. Agheg and Rima Yenikomshian at their beautiful San Jose home–brought together Armenian-Americans of the Congresswoman’s South Bay Area district and beyond–to personally get to know the representative–contribute to her re-election campaign–and enjoy the Armenian delicacies prepared by Yenikomshian.
Congresswoman Eshoo spoke about the issues facing Congress–and emphasized the need for more consideration of problems like Turkey’s human rights record. She said the US must "hold Turkey’s feet to the fire," to recognize the Armenian Genocide. "Turkey’s denial of the Genocide shows that they have little credibility," she said. She also said she was outraged by Israel’s recent confiscation of Armenian land in Jerusalem for use as a road and barrier wall against Palestinians–and was planning to do more in Congress to urge the administration to raise the issue with Israeli leaders.
Congresswoman Anna Eshoo is one of only two Armenian-American members of Congress. Longtime Bay Area ANC activist Ollia Yenikomshian welcomed her to the event–telling the audience about the ANC’s long relationship with the Congresswoman. "Fifteen years ago a small group of Armenia’s from Hai Tad met with–then–San Mateo Supervisor Anna Eshoo–to learn more about her Armenian background and interests … while she was running for her Congress," said Yenikomshian. "This year she celebrates her 10th year in Congress. She has been a leader for Armenian issues."
Congresswoman Eshoo’s public career began in 1980 when she became the first woman Chair of the San Mateo Democratic Party. In 1981–she became Chief of Staff for California Assembly Speaker Leo McCarthy. A year later–Eshoo was elected to the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors–becoming President of the Board in 1986. In 1992–Eshoo was elected to the US House of Representatives where she continues to represent the 14th Congressional District–including key parts of San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties. She has been a passionate advocate of issues concerning health care–education–the environment–women and families–high technology–and the Armenian Cause.
South Bay ANC representative Tenny Issakhanian Avanesian spoke of Rep. Eshoo’s legislative record. "As a member of the Armenian Issues Caucus in Congress–Congresswoman Eshoo plays a key role in the legislative process as it applies to issues of importance to Armenian-Americans," said Avanesian. "She has co-sponsored resolutions recognizing the Armenian Genocide–condemning the October 1999 Armenian Parliament shootings–has participated in several ANCA Armenian Genocide commemorations on Capitol Hill–and supported the ban on US aid to Azerbaijan. These efforts and her principled approach to her representation of our community have earned her an A+ in the ANC Congressional Report Card and our deep respect and appreciation."
Rep. Eshoo spent the evening personally speaking with many of the individual attendees and answering their questions on a wide-range of issues. Taking advantage of the presence of ANCA Washington D.C. representative Elizabeth Chouldjian–Eshoo spoke about concrete initiatives she plans on undertaking with the ANC when Congress reconvenes in September.