Washington, November 4 (AP) Indian-origin Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy are posing a tough challenge to each other in the race for the Republican Party’s nomination for next year’s presidential election in America.
It was difficult to ignore the tension between the two leaders when they last faced each other on the debate stage. During the debate, Haley told Ramaswamy, “Every time I listen to you, your words come across as a little stupid.”
To this, Ramaswamy said, “If we don’t sit here and make personal comments, we will be better served in the Republican Party.” He later told reporters that he would keep an easier topic for Haley next time, so that she could get her point across. There should be no problem in expressing opinion.
The two will face each other again on Wednesday for the third debate on the party’s presidential candidature. This will be one of the last opportunities he has to present his case in front of a large audience before voting begins in the Republican Party primaries next year.
Haley and Ramaswamy are far behind former President Donald Trump in the race for the 2024 nomination, but both leaders represent the growing political influence of Indian-Americans and are a reminder of the divergent views of the Indian diaspora.
Haley and Ramaswamy exemplify the diversity of opinion among Indian-Americans.
Haley, a former South Carolina governor and later UN ambassador, has generally stuck to the party’s traditional stances, especially when it comes to foreign policy. Haley, 51, has called for continued support for Ukraine in its war with Russia and described Ramaswamy, 38, as inexperienced in world affairs.
At the same time, biotech entrepreneur Ramaswamy has criticized the Republican Party’s stance and questioned the need to continue supporting Ukraine.
A recent survey by the ‘Pew Research Center’ found that 68 percent of Indian-American registered voters identified as Democrats and 29 percent identified as Republicans. Republicans may not be on the verge of winning among the Indian diaspora in the US, but even small gains in closely contested states could be notable.
There are many sections of the diaspora who are still engaged in support, funding and advocacy related to Indian politics. “However, for most Indian-Americans, state issues matter more,” said Maina Chawla Singh, scholar-in-scholar at American University’s School of International Service.
AP Ashish Parul