Friday, September 28, 2007

Top 4 GOP Candidates Criticized for not Attending Minority Debate

Last night historically black Morgan State University held a debate for the Republican candidates to speak on issues affecting minorities. Absent from the PBS aired debate were the top 4 leading GOP candidates: Rudy Giuliani, Fred Thompson, John McCain and Mitt Romney. All used the typical “scheduling conflict” excuse to skip the event. The event coordinators left the 4 empty podiums up (see picture above) for these candidates, which I think sent a powerful message.

Fortunately, the six other candidates, as well as past election candidate Alan Keyes attended. This gave a more exclusive opportunity to hear the “lower tier” candidates’ views on issues like illegal immigration, the war in Iraq, minority unemployment rates and their position on capital punishment.

All the participants expressed their embarrassment for the party and the candidates that did not show. Even soon to be decided presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich remarked that it was a mistake for them not to attend.

Why do you think the top tier GOP candidates did not attend? Was it intentional or do you really think all of them had better things to do than participate on a national forum? If so, maybe they should get their priorities straight.

Read the full article here.

Anay Shah

Blog Editor

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Politics Give an Identity to Young Indian-Americans

Check out this article from Hindustan Times...

A really interesting point in it is that Indian-American youth are disproportionately active in US politics. For example, it’s hard to find a member of Congress who doesn’t have a South-Asian staff member. USINPAC 2008 Web Director Varun Mehta is also quoted in the article talking about the amount of volunteering for campaigns by Indian-Americans.

How active do you think India-Americans are? Are they disproportionately more active than other ethnic groups? Tell us what you think!

Anay Shah

Blog Editor

Democratic Candidates Face off in NH

In case you missed the Democratic debate, check out this MSNBC article:

The candidates debated a number of things including Social Security, Iraq, and a national ban on smoking in public places. One of the most interesting points of the debates was when moderator Tim Russert asked if any candidate would ever approve torturing a suspected terrorist to prevent the detonation of a nuclear bomb with only 3 days to spare. After Hillary said no, Russert said former President Bill Clinton once suggested it might be appropriate. "Well, he's not standing here right now,” Hillary replied.

With less than 5 months before the first primary the candidates are trying to differentiate themselves. Tell us who you think won the debate by voting in our Poll on the right hand column!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Ron Paul Respects the Sovereignty of an Upcoming India and the Rest of the World

In the wake of the recent US-India Nuclear deal, two notable conclusions can be drawn. One is that Americans, including the careless foreign policy of the Bush administration, realize the potential of a free and rapid growing India during the next 50 years. The other is that even in this infancy stage, India is rightly cautious in entering any alliances and unyielding positions that would hinder its potential future growth as well as make it a pawn to any country in the global sphere.

Many candidates support the nuclear deal, but there is only one that can be easily identified as the candidate who supports the independent growth of India. In the past few months, Representative Ron Paul has annoyed some and inspired others. It’s no secret that his blunt talk and strong opinions have created some fires in the relatively placid GOP race. His position of staying away from "foreign entanglements" has been ridiculed by those who fail to look outside the current paradigm of American foreign policy that has been misguided since the Korean War. In terms of dealing with other nations, his policy is quite simple- "talk to people and trade with people". He applies the principles of the free market to foreign policy, making one of the most inconsistent and illogical positions for other candidates consistent with his own beliefs.

While some may find his positions immoral, inconceivable, and impractical, Representative Paul has garnered as much positive international attention as national. A quick Google search finds many fan sites such as: (in Portugese) (in Spanish, based out of Venezuela)

Americans often ask themselves “Why are we so hated throughout the world?”, more now then ever. It may take years to explain every detail this country has done to anger others, but for a “2nd tier” candidate who holds less than 5% in the national polls, (name) has quite a strong fan base around the world. This is quite possibly due to his persistent belief of letting other countries take care of their own matters. No one appointed America as the caretaker for the world, and the notion of America as the world’s policeman has always been unpopular both at home and abroad.

For the sake of India’s sovereignty, America should take the back seat and allow India to learn from her own mistakes. No country wants to be told what to do. Of course, it’s required and necessary to offer guidance/lessons learned, but there is no need for the US to meddle in another country’s affairs. Instead, it’s important for us to get our own house in order before we give others the blueprints.

Anay Shah
Blog Editor

India on the Security Council

Above you will find a video from a recent event hosted by USINPAC & USIBA
along with the Congressional Task Force on US-India Relations to really get an update on US-India relations and more specifically the 123 Nuclear Deal.

Amongst this discussion Assistant Secretary of State Boucher, stated "India is a solid candidate for a seat on the security council". This video displays more on his comments and how the further relations between the US and India can help move that forward. Check out the video above or on USINPAC TV!

Indian Americans Living the American Dream

Hindustan Times had an Interesting article about how an Indian American will be honored as one of the top 100 Brokers in the US. It seems as though Indian Americans continue the success story by truly living the American dream. When the Obama memo on Hillary Clinton and the community had come out it had raised some interesting questions, issues and concerns about what Indian Americans stand for. The memo portrayed the community as not really fitting values of America. I think this article and accomplishment continues to depict how we represent what America has always been.
Indian Americans believe in STRONG family values, moral values, and are thirsty for learning, education and self betterment. These are values that America used to operate on and are the basic principles of what has made the United States the great success it has become. This man Raj Sharma received the highest honor in his respective field and day in and day out this can be seen in any areas Indian Americans are venturing it. Although Senator Obama has long since apologized for the mishap the memo still shows what many Americans may believe to be our community. We need to continue to show grass roots mobilization to ensure these depictions or stereo types of the community are driven away.

The only way we can do this is by GETTING INVOLVED in the political process!
Post your thoughts....



Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Edwards takes on Our Issues: A must see

Senator John Edwards recently responded to a questionnaire which addresses some of the more important issues facing Indian American's today. This questionnaire is a must read for everyone. However, here is one of the things I found most interesting.

Senator Edwards responded to a question regarding medical malpractice liability and how it has plagued the over 40,000 Indian physicians in the country. He explains a multi-pronged solution, addressing policy and legislation changes to alleviate the problem:

"To discourage frivolous suits, I will require lawyers to have an expert testify that actual malpractice has occurred before bringing a suit. There will be mandatory sanctions for lawyers who file frivolous cases, and any lawyer who files three frivolous cases will be forbidden from bringing another suit for the next 10 years"

It's about time that somebody takes a hard line to address this issue. Doctors serve an incredibly immense role in society, yet every so often we see a doctor fall victim to a flawed system, losing his career as well as his ability to save lives. It seems as if Edwards is committed to protecting the profession from the onslaught of "frivolous" lawsuits, and further, is committed to keeping doctors where they belong—in hospitals.

I'd encourage everyone to check out the rest of the questionnaire. Senator Edwards has a pretty impressive message to Indian Americans. It's time for us to listen.

Blog Contributor

Bhutto advises Hillary

Found this interesting article where former Pakistani Prime Minister Bhutto is asked about Hillary Clinton and her bid for President.

"One thing people often say to me is that Bill Clinton is a very warm leader and that Hillary is much colder. But I think that women leaders tend to be a little bit withdrawn, to protect themselves from unkind comments. When a male leader is warm, it’s not misinterpreted. Whereas if a female leader is warm, it can have certain connotations. So a female leader has to be more restrained, in a sense."

It is interesting angle to observe these things from a woman who has been in the ultimate seat of power in her respective country.



USINPAC Tastes Wine!

On Thursday, September 20th, USINPAC supported Rep. Israel by attending his "wine tasting" fundraiser. Congressman Israel is a friend of the Indian American community and we were happy to support him. The event, held near the Capitol was a true success and it was a pleasure to see the Representative also employs an Indian American in his DC office!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Indian Americans not doing enough for India?

So I just found this article entitled "Indian Americans can invest more in India: Vayalar Ravi" on Sify.

Ravi says "Given the profile of the Indian-American community, your investment is far short of your potential."

I think these comments are careless and insulting to our community. For Indian business to truly grow internationally they need to begin by investing more in the countries that are feeding them. There is no doubt that larger Indian companies need to step up to the plate and counteract the negative sentiment they are finding in the US. By investing in offices, creating jobs and establishing responsible global images are a few of the many steps these companies need to take to keep seeing the profits they have been thus far.

I think Mr. Ravi should address his comments to Indian industry because every day Americans would invest in India if the companies were responsible and bold proponents in everyday US business and culture.



The Clinton's & India

Senator Clinton's support in the Indian American community has been getting a lot of coverage of late. This piece in the Washington Post is typical. I think that USINPAC Chairman, Sanjay Puri, makes a good point in the article. The fact is that both Bill and Hillary Clinton have a long history reaching out to the Indian American community and Indian Americans clearly appreciate that the Clintons feel warmly towards India.

As the community continues to get more and more involved in politics, we will certainly see a lot more articles on campaign contributions. That is to be expected, and it is good for community that our active participation and fundraising in noted in major publications. It really highlights how important it is for community leaders who are fundraising for any candidate to go the extra mile to comply with the letter and spirit of campaign finance laws. It would be a real shame if a few bad apples tarnish the reputation of the community when proper political participation and fundraising is something we should all be proud and excited about.

Rally for Hillary at the Upcoming Debate!

Hey All...I just got this!

Here is the info regarding the Democratic Debate scheduled for September 26.

- Clinton supporters are welcome to joins us in NASHUA, NH at 4:45pm to get on a supporter bus to go to Hanover NH for the debate - There will be a huge Clinton Support rally.. (last time Hillary came and shook hands/pictures with everyone who attended the rally) and then we will host a debate watch party in Hanover.- We will provide food, free tshirt, transportation, and guarantee lots of fun for the night! -

The person to bring the most supporters will get two complementary tickets to the debate!Please contact if you are interested in attending! Seating is limited and volunteers must confirm ASAP!!

2008 Presidential Portal by Varun Mehta

With primary dates moving forward every week, the 2008 Presidential Primary is getting closer than ever. The upcoming election is going to be one of the most important this country has faced in recent years. With no clear front runners and more than 16 candidates, this election is being closely followed by members of every community across the US.

Day in and day out I have been speaking to members of the Indian American community across the spectrum and I can tell you they are more excited than ever! Whether it be grassroots volunteering, hosting house parties or helping to raise funds; Indian Americans are involved with almost every event of this upcoming election and the numbers are growing every day.

As Portal Director I am hoping to connect the community with all things relating to this election and provide various forms content, multimedia and technology for visitors to utilize and to make informed decisions. One of the most important and exciting elements of this portal is this blog which will truly push and encourage our community to talk about the issues that are important to us. I am hoping that our community can move forward from looking for pictures with candidates to put on the mantel to truly asking the candidates questions on the issues and discuss whats important to Indian Americans.

We encourage all of you to go through the site and enjoy the features and we need you to keep coming back and become engaged in all of this! Comment on the blog posts, vote in the poll, add content and videos or even become an avid USINPAC 2008 volunteer! We need YOUR HELP, so if your interested feel free to email me at!

I challenge you all to get more involved to show the Candidates and America that the Indian American community is mobilized and an important voice in the political realm.


Varun Mehta
Portal Director