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Obama's protege Kamala headed for 'landslide win'

November 06, 2016 13:27 IST

Kamala Harris, California's Attorney General who is on the cusp of becoming the first Indian-American Senator in the US Congress, may push for strong India-US ties as a protege of President Barack Obama.

Described by Obama as "fearless", 51-year-old Harris is headed for a "landslide win" in the US Senate elections from California.

"It is going to be a landslide," M R Rangaswami, a Silicon Valley-based investor, entrepreneur and philanthropist, said ahead of November 8 election described as a momentous occasion for the Indian-American community.

Considered to be protege of Obama, she is expected to be a fierce advocate of India US relationship.

"She would be a terrific person (for the community) to have in (Washington) DC," said Rangaswami.

Harris has already got the backing of Obama and Vice President Joe Biden to be the state's next Senator, brightening her chances to become the first from the community
ever to be a member of the Upper House.

She heads into the US Senate election with a considerable lead over fellow Democrat Loretta Sanchez, whose plan to coalesce Republicans and Latinos behind her has not materialised, according to a new poll.

"Kalama Harris knows, you got to be fearless against special interest," Obama said in a latest advertisement for Harris being run across California.

Harris who was born in Oakland, California, is the daughter of an Indian mother who emigrated from Chennai in 1960 and a Jamaican American father.

"The kind of support she has got in the nation including the President, I think, she would be very well received by the DC crowd. She has got that national stature," Rangaswami noted.

On India-US relationship, Harris came out with flying colours when she was grilled by a group of prominent Indian-Americans in the Silicon Valley some six months ago.

"We had a very constructive dialogue. I think, as a result of the meeting she is closer to the issues that impact Indian Americans and India," Rangaswami said.

"She sees India as a strategic partner (of the US). There is no doubt (about it). Coupled with the fact that President Obama has been putting such a close relationship with India, she is kind of a protege of the President, I think she will advocate for a very similar policy that he has been advocating with India," Rangaswami said.

Rangaswami said she would be quite sensitive to the issues related to the community including immigration and India.

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