Mid-Term Polls: The number of Indian Americans in US House of Representatives may grow to 5


The number of Indian Americans in the US House of Representatives may well go up to five after the results are out for the mid-term polls scheduled to be held on Tuesday, November 8. Pollsters and political pundits have forecast that four incumbents of the Democratic Party – Ami Bera, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Ro Khanna, and Pramila Jayapal – are likely to be re-elected.

Another Indian American who seems to be well on his way to the House of Representatives is entrepreneur and businessman Shrinivas Thanedar. He is seeking his election from the 13th Congressional District of Michigan. In the fall of 1978 when Shri Thanedar applied for an American student visa, after getting into a Ph.D. program at a university in Ohio, the US consulate in Mumbai rejected his visa four times. Then, his persistence won and he got a US visa in 1979. Thanedar is likely to become the elected representative from Michigan’s 13th district, covering large parts of Detroit city.

The senior most of all five Indian Americans is Bera who is seeking his sixth term in the House of Representatives from the 7th Congressional District of California. Seeking their fourth consecutive terms are Khanna, who represents the 17th Congressional district from California, Krishnamoorthi from the 8th Congressional District of Illinois, and Jayapal from the 7th Congressional District of Washington State.

Political experts feel that all five are expected to register a comfortable victory over their Republican opponents. If elected, Thanedar will make his maiden entry into the House of Representatives from the predominantly African American portion of Detroit.

Jayapal, 57, who was born in Chennai, is the first Indian American woman to be elected to the House of Representatives. Another member of the community, Aruna Miller, is poised to make history in the State of Maryland. Aruna Miller, a former member of the Maryland House of Delegates, is running as Lt Governor of the State on the Democratic ticket. Political pundits say she is all set to become the first-ever Indian American to be elected to this position in Maryland.

The Democrats and the Republicans have intensified their efforts to reach out to the Indian-Americans ahead of the November 8 midterm elections.

Media reports say that in the State of Pennsylvania, popular TV host Padma Lakshmi, Phenomenal Media CEO Meena Harris, and Jayapal would visit Philadelphia denizens to mobilize the Indian American voters.

The canvass launch will feature music, food, and distinguished speakers. Peloton Instructor Aditi Shah will lead a 20-minute grounding session to kick off the day, focusing on the importance and power of our collective community. The trio hopes to reach out to more than 4,000 people residing in Upper Darby, Centre City, and Northeast Philadelphia.

Neil Makhija, Indian-American Impact executive director, in 2016, said that Pennsylvania was decided by a slim margin of less than 45 thousand votes. “This November, we’re determined to show up and show out, just as we did in Georgia, when we doubled turnout. With over 100,000 South Asian American voters in Pennsylvania alone, we have the opportunity to set the direction of the country,” he said.

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