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Obama campaign announces Asian American Finance Committee

July 09, 2008 09:24 IST

The Obama campaign announced on Tuesday the launch of the Asian American Finance Committee that comprises several Indian-Americans that will help raise funds for the Obama presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee this election cycle.

The campaign said that, "the committee is comprised of diverse American communities of supporters, including those from Asian-American, South-Asian American, and Pacific Islander background, who will help raise funds to elect Senator Barack Obama as president and to strengthen and expand the Democratic Party."

Silicon Valley, California entrepreneur and information technology icon Vinod Khosla, a national co-chair of the committee said, "We look forward to doing everything we can to elect Senator Obama in November. From ending the war in Iraq and restoring America's standing abroad, to promoting innovation and working toward a comprehensive energy independence plan."

"From restoring the balance between civil liberties and national security, to ensuring all Americans have access to high quality, affordable healthcare, Senator Obama has consistently shown that he is the right choice not just for Asian-Americans, but for all Americans," Khosla added.

Some of the Indian-American national co-chairs like Mahinder Tak of Bethesda, Maryland, and Grassroots co-chairs like Reshma Saujani of New York, are erstwhile staunch supporters of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Obama's rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, who threw in the towel on June 7, and in a public unity rally in Unity, New Hampshire of June 27 along with Obama, pledged her full support to getting Obama elected president.

Since then many of Clinton's close aides, including Indian-American Neera Tanden, who was her campaign policy director have joined the Obama campaign.

Besides Khosla and Tak, who is also co-chair of the Indo-American Leadership Council within the DNC, the other national co-chairs are, Preeta Bansal of New York, who is also a senior policy advisor to the Obama campaign, Sohaib Abbasi of Silicon Valley, Nasser Ahmad, Romita Shetty and Cyrus Amir-Mokri of New York, Swadesh Chatterjee of Cary, North Carolina, Bel Leong-Hong of Gaithersburg, Maryland, Scott Oki of Seattle, Washington, and Stan Toy of Los Angeles, California.

Besides, Saujani, the Grassroots co-chairs are Curtis Chin of Los Angeles, Hrishi Kartikeyan of New York, and Dave Kumar of Washington, DC. Kartikeyan and Kumar are co-founders of South-Asians for Obama.

Gautam Raghavan, of the DNC and executive director of the Indo-American Leadership Council said, "We're thrilled that some very prominent national leaders have agreed to serve as national co-chairs," and added, "In additional, we are assembling a stellar team of regional co-chairs who have committed to hosting events in key cities and regions across the nation."

Aziz Haniffa in Washington, DC