India Latest News USA

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer expresses solidarity with India

Washington, DCIndian Ambassador to the United States, Taranjit Singh Sandhu on Sunday called on US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to discuss the strategic partnership between the two countries, especially in the Quad, COVID-19 vaccines and healthcare.

The US Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer expressed concern over the sudden spike in Covid-19 cases in India and both sides discussed how the two countries are working together.

Taking to Twitter, Sandhu said: “Good conversation w/ Majority Leader @SenSchumer on the strategic partnership especially in QUAD; vaccines & healthcare. Discussed working together in innovation as well as emerging technologies & thanked him for his longstanding support for India & Indian American community.”

During the conversation, the Senate majority leader expressed concern over the sudden spike in Covid-19 cases in India and both sides discussed how the two countries are working together in innovation and emerging technologies.

Apart from Schumer, some of the other top American Senators who have come out in support of India over the past few months include Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Chris Van Hollen Dick Durbin, John Cornyn, Mark Warner, Bob Menendez, Jeff Merkley, Ed Markey, Jim Risch, Dianne Feinstein, Amy Klobuchar and Gary Peters.

The support from US lawmakers and policymakers is a result of a sustained outreach at US Congress by India’s top envoy Sandhu and senior Indian diplomats.

The Indian envoy had also had virtual meetings with eminent Republicans including Michael McCaul, Ranking Member, House Foreign Affairs Committee; Steve Chabot who is the Ranking Member of House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific; Brian Fitzpatrick, Jeff Fortenberry, Ann Wagner, Andy Barr, Liz Cheney, Scott Perry, Pete Sessions, Michael Waltz and Joe Wilson.

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Latest News USA

Indian-American Sabrina Singh named White House Deputy Press Secretary

Indian-American Sabrina Singh has been named as the White House Deputy Press Secretary in the upcoming Joe Biden administration in the US.

Singh was Press Secretary to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on the Biden-Harris campaign.

According to a statement by Biden-Harris transition team, the appointments demonstrate that the president and vice president-elect are building an administration that “looks like America and is ready to deliver results for the American people on day one.”

Prior to her role on the campaign, Singh served as Senior Spokesperson for Mike Bloomberg’s presidential campaign and National Press Secretary for Cory Booker’s presidential campaign.

She previously served as Deputy Communications Director for the Democratic National Committee, Spokesperson for American Bridge’s Trump War Room and Regional Communications Director on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign.

She has also worked at SKDKnickerbocker, served as Communications Director for Rep. Jan Schakowsky and worked at various Democratic committees.


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Latest News USA

Hirsh Singh makes bid for NJ Governor

WPG Talk Radio in New Jersey announced that Hirsh Singh, who came up short in the GOP primary against Rik Mehta, who eventually lost to Democratic incumbent Sen. Cory Booker, Nov. 9 formally announced his candidacy for governor during an on-air interview.

The 35-year-old Singh lost the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate last July by 8,727 votes in his bid to take on U.S. Senator Cory Booker. He won 30 percent in a GOP congressional primary in the 2nd district against Seth Grossman, and 10 percent in his third-place finish running for governor in 2018.

The Indian American candidate also ran for the U.S. Senate in 2018 before switching to the congressional race.

Singh joins former Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli in the race. Four others — Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick, Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden, and GOP activist Rudy Rullo — are also mulling bids for the Republican gubernatorial nomination, according to the Globe report.

Singh, the report says, is an unapologetic, staunch Trump supporter. He plans to run hard against Ciatterelli regarding his comments about Trump, it said.

On the Democrat side, incumbent Gov. Phil Murphy has announced his intentions to seek a second term.

The gubernatorial election is set for Nov. 2, 2021.

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Latest News USA

Rik Mehta loses to Cory Booker in Senate race

New YorkCory Booker, the former mayor of New Jersey’s largest city and onetime Democratic Presidential candidate, scored a second US Senate term over a Republican who had raised scant campaign cash and downplayed the novel coronavirus.

With 51% of precincts reporting, Booker had 61% of the vote to 38% for Rik Mehta, a pharmaceutical entrepreneur and political newcomer, according to the Associated Press (AP). New Jersey hasn’t sent a Republican to the US Senate since 1972.

Booker, 51, was backed by a campaign fund and other accounts that as of November 1 had raised $14.5 million. Mehta, 42, had reported just $564,000, more than half of it a loan backed by the candidate, according to Federal Election Commission filings.

Booker won a special election in 2013 over Republican Bob Hugin to fill the seat of the late Frank Lautenberg, a fellow Democrat. Hugin, the former chairman and chief executive officer of Celgene Corp., had spent $36 million of his own fortune on that race.

In January, Booker ended his 2020 presidential campaign after failing to qualify for a candidates’ debate. A progressive champion of marijuana legalization and criminal reform, same-sex marriage, a $15 federal minimum wage, and stricter gun laws, Booker faced a challenger who showed unabashed support for Donald Trump in a state where the President is unpopular.

Mehta on Twitter said he and his wife attended a Trump fundraiser in Bedminster on October 1, less than 24 hours before the White House disclosed that the President was positive for the coronavirus. In response to Governor Phil Murphy’s suggestion that all attendees quarantine, Mehta said Murphy was fear mongering, and there was no need to do so. (Source: Hindustan Times)

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Latest News USA

Asian American Republican Alliance launched in NJ with Senate candidate

Fords, NJ: The Asian American Republic Alliance (AARA) was formally launched  with an inaugural dinner on September 30 at Royal Albert Palace in New Jersey. It highlighted the candidacy of GOP candidate for US Senate from New Jersey, Rik Mehta, an Indian American.

Rik Mehta won the GOP primary on July 7. He is a biotech entrepreneur, innovator, and healthcare policy expert, as well as an attorney and pharmacist, according to his election website. He has an uphill task running against the well-entrenched Democratic incumbent, Senator Cory Booker.

Among the distinguished guests attending were  New Jersey State Senator Sam Thompson, MCRO Chair Lucille Panos, candidate for NJ’s 6th Congressional District, Christian Onuoha, Sayreville GOP Chair Arthur J. Rittenhouse Jr. and others.

The speakers included Rik Mehta, New Jersey GOP Chairman Doug Steinhardt, Middlesex County Chair Lucille Panos, Dr. Vishal Dhaduk who came in specially for the inaugural from Scranton PA, Padma Shri Dr. Sudhir Parikh and AARA Founder & Chairman Sridhar Chillara.

Mr Chillara emphasized the importance for Asian Americans to get more keenly involved in the political process. He asserted that the Republican  more closely aligns with the traditional conservative values of  Asian Americans. GOP, he pointed out, has actually been more receptive of Asian Americans – think of Indian Americans Nikki Haley and Bobby Jindal, who both rose to dizzying heights in party and positions of power.  Soliciting the community’s support for Rik Mehta’s candidacy, he spoke about how they can make a difference in a state like New Jersey, tilting it away from being a solid Blue state.

Doug Steinhardt assured his support to all Republican candidates up and down the ballot with special emphasis on the Congressional seats they hope to flip this year in the state

Ms Panos talked of how she was once a Democrat and has now walked away once she realized what the party really stood for.

Dr Dhaduk gave a rousing speech on how Democrats are encouraging the creation of a welfare state and tearing down traditional American values such as hard work and self-reliance.

AARA national directors Praveen Thadkamalla, Pavan Kuchana, Krishna Vemuri, Piyush Patel and Hari Eppanapally were also present.

Jesal Amin and Brajesh Singh, who are respectively running to be mayors in East Brunswick and Piscataway, made their campaign pitches.

AARA NJ State President Ravi Kolla spoke about supporting all Republican candidates. Vote of thanks was given by AARA NJ State Director Dharmesh Patel.


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Latest News USA

For Senate seat from NJ, Rik Mehta no match for Cory Booker

The race for the US Senate seat in New Jersey is turning out to be a one-sided affair with incumbent Democratic Senator Cory Booker holding a double-digit lead over his Republican challenger Rik Mehta. 

Poll pundits have predicted there’s little likelihood of the charismatic former Newark mayor losing to Mehta, a political newcomer with an accomplished background including a law degree and a doctorate in pharmacy.

There are no Senate ads running on broadcast stations in Philadelphia or New York – markets that capture New Jersey – for or against either candidate, according to the Federal Communication Commission’s records. Nonpartisan political ratings organizations count New Jersey firmly in the Democrats’ column.

Booker is a well-recognized figure, whose failed run in the most recent Democratic presidential primary had him under the national spotlight for months. Mehta is new to the political game and is the founder of biopharmaceutical firms. He lives in traditionally Republican Morris County with his wife and three children, while Booker lives in the Democratic stronghold of Newark in Essex County, with his partner, actor Rosario Dawson.

Booker is unabashedly liberal; Mehta said in an interview he won’t distance himself from President Donald Trump, who isn’t popular in New Jersey.

“I would describe myself as pretty unapologetically Republican,” he said. He added that he’s “completely happy with the direction the president has taken this country, especially before the pandemic.”

keywords: rik mehta, cory booker, democratic senator, november election, donald trump

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International Latest News

Former Governor Chris Christie endorses US Senate candidate Rik Mehta

Republican US Senate seat candidate in New Jersey, Rik Mehta’s campaign received a significant boost in the form of an endorsement from former Gov. Chris Christie.

“Dr. Mehta will stand with President Trump to hold China accountable, reopen our country and always stand up for New Jersey in Washington, D.C.,” Christie said, according to a New Jersey Globe report.

Mehta, a former U.S. Food and Drug Administration official, has won the endorsement of 17 of 21 Republican county organizations, the report noted.

“I am proud to receive Governor Christie’s endorsement of my campaign for U.S. Senate. Chris knows first-hand how to win state-wide elections and it is an honor to have him on our team,” Mehta said in a statement. “I look forward to working with him and together with President Trump to reopen our country and bring manufacturing jobs back from China.”

Mehta, the frontrunner to take on Democrat Senator Cory Booker in 2020, recently launched his “Made in America” medicines campaign that will require companies to disclose the country of origin of their prescription drugs.

Mehta is a vice president at Aquestive Therapeutics and an adviser of Licentiam Inc., a firm focused on reducing regulation in the healthcare industry.

He previously served as Pfizer Consumer Health’s head of regulatory policy and was deputy director for the Division of Medical Policy Programs for the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Medical Policy.

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