Tulsi Gabbard, the first Hindu ever elected to US congress, is running for the White House in 2020, and could end up vying with Kamala Harris, who is likely to run also, for the affection, support and, most importantly, the financial backing of the country’s richest ethnic community, Indian Americans.
“I have decided to run and will be making a formal announcement within the next week,” Gabbard told a CNN TV news anchor for a show that airs Saturday.
Gabbard, 37, is a US army veteran and a three-term member of the US House of Representative from Hawaii, where the 44th president of the United Sates Barack Obama was born and raised and where he would vacation with his family every major holidays.
Obama, now the elder statesman of the Democratic party has not endorsed Gabbard or Harris or any one of the 15 or more Democrats considering a presidential run, to go up against President Donald Trump in 2020.
Indian Americans have been keenly following both Gabbard and Harris in anticipation of their run for the White House with mixed feelings: Gabbard is a white American but as a practicing Hindu is an icon among Hindu Americans.
And Harris is an Indian American from her mother’s side and African American from her father’s.
There has been some disquiet among Indian Americans about Harris as she has sought to project herself as an African American.