Monday, November 03, 2008 10:15 PM (New York)
In New York there is already something celebratory in the air. This liberal melting pot of a city is Obama country. Here they say they don't even need to wait for the election day to know who the next President is.
They're certain that America has a date with both change and hope.
Poll after poll has declared advantage Obama and his supporters seem convinced that the elections are a mere formality.
But is it that easy? A new poll shows that a large section of Asian Americans remain undecided, among them is the Indian American community.
Traditionally, Indian Americans have been pro-Democrats. This time there is a new factor. There is a regime that has been great for India. But will this make any difference on the election day?
In a corner of New York, which the migrants from Punjab and hoteliers from Chennai call home, they are still leaning firmly towards Obama.
A handful of voters though are confused. Like Surinder Singh, a cabbie who left Jalandhar for New York 25 years ago.
A registered Democrat for years he now says the Republicans did much more to bring India and America closer.
"During the earlier government there was hardly any contact between India and America. Bush gave a new direction to the relationship," said Surinder Singh.
But here lies the rub. What's good for India may not be good for Indian Americans and the other way around too.
Indian Americans say the Democrats are friendlier towards immigrants.
Indians worry that Obama's protectionist economic policy won't be so friendly towards Indians who live outside America.
Newspaper editorials in India worry about whether Obama will meddle in Kashmir.
In little India, New York, Indian Americans are dreaming of the White House.
"I think the biggest thing that Obama has done is given second generation Indians a level playing field. Earlier, it used to be that so and so can't be President now our children know that while we cant they can be President," said Deepak Nandy.
And so even if New Delhi loved George W Bush, New York is putting its hands up for Obama.