When the U.S. ambassador to Laos visited St. Paul in May 2003,, his mission was to sell Hmong business and community leaders on improving trade relations with Laos to reform the Communist government that many had fled.
Instead, Douglas Hartwick's warnings against supporting Hmong insurgents in Laos have upset some community members eager for regime change in Laos, and his support for normalized trade relations sparked protests in St. Paul and Washington.
Foes of normalized trade relations oppose the government, accusing it of waging a campaign of ethnic cleansing against the minority Hmong hiding in mountain jungles.
Armed Hmong insurgents -- who were U.S. allies during the Vietnam War -- are now branded terrorists. Hartwick has warned Hmong and Lao audiences in St. Paul and elsewhere that supporting armed resistance in Laos is illegal and stressed that, in the post-Sept. 11 world, the government will consider any such activity as supporting terrorism.
State Sen. Mee Moua said the escalating rhetoric over the trade proposal could have been avoided. If the U.S. government had shown it was taking seriously her community's concerns about human-rights violations, she said, "perhaps the discussion on the trade relations wouldn't have escalated to the level of taking on such significance. People would have felt there's an alternative outlet to address those concerns."
Saint Paul Supports Keith Ellison Fundraiser
"The list of those expected to show up smiling and fork over the moola reads like a who's-who of tax-and-spend big government in St. Paul": Sen. Ellen Anderson, Rep. Matt Entenza, Chief Bill Finney & Linda Finney, Rep. Alice Hausman, Council Member Lee Helgen, Rep. Sheldon Johnson, School Board Member Kazoua Kong-Thao, Council President Kathy Lantry, Rep. John Lesch, Rep. Tim Mahoney, Rep. Carlos Mariani, Council Member Debbie Montgomery, Revs. Byron Moore & Sharon Moore, Sen. Mee Moua, School Board Member Al Oertwig, Comm. Rafael Ortega, Sen. Sandy Pappas, Rep. Michael Paymar, Comm. Victoria Reinhardt, (former Mayor) Jim Scheibel, School Board President Elona Street-Stewart, Rep. Cy Thao, Council Member Dave Thune, Rev. Carl Walker. 
In 2009 Mee Moua was listed as a member of the Advisory Board of Wellstone Action, a Minnesota based organization based on the political legacy of that state’s late ‘progressive” Senator Paul Wellstone.
- Wellstone Action and Wellstone Action Fund combine to form a national center for training and leadership development for the progressive movement. Founded in January 2003, Wellstone Action's mission is to honor the legacy of Paul and Sheila Wellstone by continuing their work through training, educating, mobilizing and organizing a vast network of progressive individuals and organizations.
Supported Progressive Health Care Reform
In late 2009, Mee Moua was one of more than 1,000 state legislators to sign a letter entitled "State Legislators for Progressive Health Care Reform". The letter was a project of the Progressive States Network and was developed in consultation with national health care reform advocates, including the AFL-CIO, AFSCME, Community Catalyst, Families USA, Herndon Alliance, National Women's Law Center, Northeast Action, SEIU, and Universal Health Care Action Network. The letter reads in part,
- "Failure to pass national comprehensive health reform now will further jeopardize state and local budgets, undermining public services like education, public safety, and transportation infrastructure... We, the undersigned, call on President Obama and the Congress to enact bold and comprehensive health care reform this year – based on these principles and a strong federal-state collaboration – and pledge our support as state legislators and allies in pursuit of guaranteed, high quality, affordable health care for all."
Asian American Community Development Conference
May 17, 2012, New York University’s Kimmel Center, the 5th Annual Asian American Community Development Conference was convened.
Plenary: Mobilizing Our Community from the Margins to the Center,
- This plenary will be an important opportunity for policymakers and community leaders to discuss the changing dynamics of the Asian American community as we move from the margins to the center. Political frameworks and organizing strategies that were effective during times when our communities were geographically and economically isolated may need to be re-evaluated as populations disperse into new neighborhoods and suburban communities. Practitioners from the political, labor, human services, and community development fields will explore both the challenges and opportunities of this changing dynamic and what it will mean for Asian Americans as well as U.S. society in general.
- Neera Tanden, Center for American Progress
- Mee Moua, Asian American Justice Center
- Grace Meng, New York State Assembly (Invited)
- Moderator: Bill Chong, NYC Department for the Aging
Honorary Board Asian American Action Fund
- [Saint Paul Pioneer Press (Minnesota) JUNE 2, 2003 Monday CITY EDITION HMONG BASH U.S.-LAOS TRADE IDEA HUMAN RIGHTS MUST COME FIRST, SOME ARGUE BYLINE: TODD NELSON, Pioneer Press SECTION: MAIN; Pg. A1]
- Ravenscroft Dog Farm, 07 AUGUST 2006, Are You Ready for Some Socialism?
- Progressive States Network: State Legislators for Progressive Health Care Reform (accessed on Dec. 23, 2010)
- 5th Annual Asian American Community Development Conference, page, accessed march 25, 2013
- American Action Fund