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Democrats wooing South Asians
July 27, 2004 13:46 IST
There are 211 delegates of Asia-Pacific descent at the Democratic convention which kicked off in Boston last evening, the largest ever contingent from the community, report agencies.
Party officials pointed out that they represented four per cent of the total delegates, up from three per cent during the last campaign in 2000, and 40 per cent of the minority delegates. According to some analysts, this is an obvious attempt by the John Kerry campaign to woo the community which could tilt the balance in a close race.
Kerry's campaign managers are also claiming that their party manifesto, which will be endorsed at the convention, will be the "most inclusive" and relevant to the Asian American community. This blueprint includes pledges which include combating racial profiling, quality health care and assisting small businesses. It also promises affordable education and a smoother and more effective citizenship process process.
There are an estimated 2.5 million South Asians in the United States, almost three-fourths of them from India.
Addressing a breakfast fund raiser organised by South Asians in Washington earlier in the month, Kerry had pledged to work for better living opportunities to all immigrants and to ensure that their civil liberties and human rights are not violated. "We want all immigrants to feel safe and comfortable. ... We will revive civil liberties and ensure that all Americans, irrespective of their beliefs and where they came from, get equal opportunities," he said.