Indian-origin Senator Kamala Harris is the best bet as a running mate for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in the presidential elections as she can not only bring along her immigrant experience to the fore but also send a strong signal that no door is closed to Indian-Americans in public life, an eminent community leader has said.
Harris, 55, is reportedly among the candidates shortlisted for a running mate for Biden. The former vice president, who is challenging incumbent Donald Trump, a Republican, has said that he would select a woman as his running mate this month.
"Harris knows the Black American experience. She knows the South Asian-American experience. She knows the immigrant experience. She knows the aspirational power of the American dream. She is the running mate for this moment," wrote Neil Makhija, Executive Director of IMPACT, in an op-ed published by CNN.
IMPACT is an Indian-American political organisation devoted to boosting the number of Indian-Americans in public office by recruiting, training, funding, and electing talented candidates from the community.
"A Biden-Harris ticket would send a message that no door is closed to Indian-Americans in public life, at a time when we're beginning to flex our political muscle," he wrote.
Harris was born to a Black father and an Indian mother. Her parents were both immigrants: her father, Donald Harris, from Jamaica, and her mother, Shyamala Gopalan, from Chennai. She is one of only three Asian Americans in the Senate and she's the first Indian-American ever to serve in the chamber.
In the 2016 presidential election, 77 per cent of Indian Americans voted for Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, according to statistics by CRW Strategy, a research firm.
"But Democrat support in 2020 is not assured," he wrote.
A recent survey carried out by Trump's supporter Al Mason claims that 50 per cent of Indian-American voters in key battleground states are moving away from the opposition Democratic Party towards Trump. The US presidential elections are slated to be held on November 3.
"Trump has built an alliance with the populist and Hindu nationalist Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and the pair have appeared together at packed rallies in both Houston, Texas and Ahmedabad, India. The Trump re-election campaign has been running social media ads seeking to win over Indian voters, praising Indian-Americans as business and technology leaders and touting Trump's tax cuts," Makhija wrote.
He argued that her vice-presidential candidacy would be historic and inspiring, not only for Black Americans, but for millions of voters of South Asian descent -- like him. Asian Americans, more broadly, are the fastest-growing racial or ethnic voting bloc in the country, he said.
Around 1.3 million Indian-Americans are expected to vote in this year's election, with nearly 200,000 in battleground states like Pennsylvania and 125,000 in Michigan, according to the research firm CRW Strategy, Makhija wrote, adding that Indian-Americans register and vote at high rates, even though they remain under-represented in elected office.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)