We called 2009 The Year of Living Desi-rously because, everywhere we turned, South Asians seemed to be dominating the headlines, but 2010 is looking just as bright for the desiaspora, particularly in American politics.
Our pal Jesse Washington, who covers race and ethnicity for the AP, recently reported that 8 Indian Americans–a record number–are currently running for Congress or statewide office. To put this number in perspective, Washington points out that only 2 Indian Americans have been elected to Congress thus far, the first being Dalip Singh Saund in 1956, and the second being Bobby Jindal, who entered Congress in 2004. 2010′s candidasians, 7 of which are Democratic hopefuls–South Carolina gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley is the exception–are as follows:
- Ami Bera in California’s 3rd district
- Raj Goyle in Kansas’ 4th district
- Nikki Haley for South Carolina governor
- Kamala Harris for California Attorney General
- Ravi Sangisetty in Louisiana’s 3rd district
- Reshma Saujani in New York’s 14th district
- Manan Trivedi in Pennsylvania’s 6th district
- Surya Yalamanchili in Ohio’s 2nd district
These eight Indian American candidates are, as you’d expect, ridiculously accomplished and a Hardass Asian Parent’s dream. Bera and Trivedi are both physicians; Trivedi is also an Iraq War veteran. Goyle is the son of doctors and holds a law degree from Harvard. Haley is the first Indian American to hold office in South Carolina. Harris is the first woman and person of color to serve as California attorney general. Sangisetty is a 27 year-old lawyer who did his undergrad at Princeton. Saujani holds a Masters of Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School and a law degree from Yale. Yalamanchili is also in his late 20′s and appeared on The Apprentice in 2007.
And shoot us for being shallow, but this is also one really good-looking group of political candidates. We’ve already celebrated the babe-itude of Kamala Harris, we totally want Reshma Saujani’s hair, we think Dr. Bera’s sideburns are dope. Not that any of that matters, given the group’s professional accomplishments, but, hey, it don’t hurt none, either.
Filed under: Ami Bera, Asian-American Politicians, Bobby Jindal, Desis, Hardass Asian Parents' Wet Dreams, Indian American Politicians, Indian Americans Running for Office, Indian-Americans, Kamala Harris, Manan Trivedi, Nikki Haley, People Who Make Us Look Bad, Politasians, Raj Goyle, Ravi Sangisetty, Reshma Saujani, Surya Yalamanchili
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