By Geeta Goindi
Washington, DC, November 4, 2020 – Even as uncertainty looms large over the outcome of the presidential race and balance of power in the Senate, all four Indian-American lawmakers have cruised to re-election to the House of Representatives. Democratic congressional incumbents Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois, Ami Bera and Ro Khanna of California, and Pramila Jayapal of Washington swept races in their respective districts.
Bera, the senior-most member of the so-called House ‘Samosa Caucus’, named after what is deemed the most popular Indian snack, was comfortably re-elected to a fifth term by a 61-39 percent margin over his Republican rival Robert Patterson in California’s 7th congressional district.
A former Democratic co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian-Americans, Bera has been serving on Capitol Hill since 2013. Currently, he is a member of the powerful House Foreign Affairs Committee and serves as chairman of the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation, and is vice-chair of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
In wide margins, Krishnamoorthi, Khanna, and Jayapal cruised to third terms in an otherwise nail-biter election.
“I am honored that my constituents have elected me to represent them in Congress for another two years, and I am tremendously grateful to all my supporters who helped make my re-election possible”, Krishnamoorthi said in a press communique.
The lawmaker who represents the 8th district of Illinois, including the west and northwest suburbs of Chicago, garnered the support of over 70 percent of voters with more than 60 percent of precincts in his district reporting election results, Tuesday night.
“Today, our country faces enormous and unprecedented economic and public health challenges. No matter who controls the White House or the Senate in January, I am committed to doing whatever it takes to bring the country together to implement commonsense solutions that move our country and our people forward”, he stated.
In California’s 17th congressional district, Khanna, who describes himself as a “pro-growth progressive”, decisively defeated fellow Indian-American Ritesh Tandon of the Republican Party.
“We had a 77 percent win tonight”, Khanna said on microblogging site Twitter. “I am so honored to have such strong support and want to thank everyone in my district. I also want to thank Ritesh Tandon for a spirited race and hope we can bring the community together”.
Clearly elated on her re-election victory, Jayapal tweeted, “Wow, we did it decisively: 85 percent and 344, 541 votes! Thank you #WA07″, she said to her district voters. “I am humbled, grateful and ready to serve again. Our path to truly build a more just and equitable country is long. But, we are bold, progressive and unafraid, and if we believe in the possible and organize, we will win”.
Attention is now focused on Arizona’s 6th congressional district where Indian-American Democratic challenger Hiral Tipirneni is narrowly leading the Republican incumbent David Schweikert. With 76 percent of the votes counted, Tipirneni, a physician, is ahead by a slim 50.3–49.7 percent margin.
Democrats are expected to retain control of the House of Representatives for the 117th Congress.