indica Washington Bureau
The influential Impact Fund on Tuesday announced to endorse Indian-origin entrepreneur Suneel Gupta in the Democratic party primary for the 11th Congressional District from Michigan.
Gupta, 38, is the younger brother of CNN’s star medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta and son of Damyanti Gupta, who was the first female engineer with a degree at Ford Motor Company. The primary is slated for August 7.
Running his impressive campaign on the platform of quality and affordable health-care available to all, Gupta has broken the fundraising record by raising more than USD 1.3 million. This is said to be the highest among all the candidates running for the Congress from the seat.
“Having known Suneel for years, I know he has the passion and experience that will make him an extraordinary Member of Congress,” said Raj Goyle, co-founder of Impact and a former member of the Kansas House of Representatives.
Indian American Impact Fund is a political action committee which works with experienced operatives, campaign strategists, and donors to endorse candidates based on their viability and commitment to advocating for the needs and values of the Indian American community.
Gupta is among its latest endorsements. “And as the son of Ford’s first female engineer, he’s seen firsthand the promise of America — and will work every day in Congress to make that promise a reality for all Americans,” Goyle said.
“As someone who has balanced budgets and helped create good paying jobs, Suneel has the experience to fight for better jobs, better wages, and better skills for workers in his district and across America,” said Deepak Raj, co-founder of Impact and chair of the Impact Fund.
“His fresh thinking and bold leadership are exactly what this country needs,” he said.
“I’m honored to have the support of IMPACT and to fight for our shared belief that ‘we all belong.’ Together, we will make sure every American’s voice is heard,” said Gupta, whose first major hurdle is on August 7 when he has to win the Democratic primary to be on the November ballot.
The Impact Fund also announced endorsing Dita Bhargava in her primary and general election bid for Connecticut State Treasurer. “Throughout her life and career, Dita has demonstrated the kind of tenacity and determination that we deserve in our elected officials,” said Deepak Raj.
“Despite the record number of women running for office, Dita is the only Indian American woman running for statewide office in the entire country,” said Raj Goyle, co-founder of Impact and a former member of the Kansas House of Representatives.
“We are proud to join EMILY’s List and other organizations in supporting her candidacy and are confident her campaign, and election this November, will inspire countless other Indian American women to run for office,” he said.
“Trump’s anti-diversity administration threatens to reverse decades of progress made to protect and empower minorities and immigrants. It’s more important than ever that candidates with diverse backgrounds run for office and I am inspired by the mission of the Indian American Impact Fund,” said Bhargava, Democratic candidate for Connecticut State Treasurer.
In recent days, Impact Fund has announced its endorsements to five state legislative candidates in Amol Jethwani from Florida, Mona Das (Washington State), Dr. Megan Srinivas (Iowa), Nima Kulkarni (Kentucky) and Mujtaba Mohammed from North Carolina.
Mona Das is seeking to enter the Washington State Senate from District 47. At eight months old, Mona immigrated from India to America with parents who had nothing by USD six in their pocket and a desire to build a better life for their family.
Now, Mona is running for Washington State Senate to fight for immigrants’ rights and representation, especially immigrant small business owners, and to ensure other Indian American women have the opportunity to be heard and represented in the halls of power. Mona’s race is one of the most closely watched state legislative races in Washington State.
A fourth year political science student, Amol Jethwani is a campus activist and community organizer running for Florida State House to champion students and fight for equality, health care, and economic justice.
If elected, Amol will be the first Indian American or South Asian American to serve in the Florida state legislature, and the first openly LGBTQ Indian American to ever serve in elected office in Florida.
Nima Kulkarni is an immigration attorney, advocate, and founder of the New Americans Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to educating and informing the local community about immigration-related issues. When Nima was six, her family immigrated from India to Louisville to ensure her brother could get the special education that was not available in India.
In May, Nima won the Democratic nomination — beating the incumbent and two other primary challengers — and is positioned to be the first Indian American to run, and win, state office in the history of Kentucky.
A former staff attorney at the Council for Children’s Rights and Assistant Public Defender, Mujtaba Mohammed is running for North Carolina State Senate to fight for North Carolina’s children and families.
In May, Mujtaba unseated an incumbent Democratic state senator by knocking on more than 11,000 doors and calling more than 6,500 households. If elected in November, he will join State Senator Jay Chaudhuri in the State Senate.
Running for Iowa State House from District 9, Dr. Megan Srinivas has dedicated her life and career to addressing disparities in health resource allocation.
A practicing physician with both her undergraduate and MPH degrees from Harvard and her medical residency training from Johns Hopkins, Megan is running for Iowa State House to improve her state’s health care and public education systems.
In June, Megan won her primary election, and when she is elected in November will be the only Indian American serving in elected office in Iowa and the only Asian American in any state level office.