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Most Indian Americans favour Biden but Trump gains ground: survey

By Suvan Bose

For the presidential election in November, a survey of Indian Americans has found that 66% of respondents favour Democrat Joe Biden, as President Donald Trump follows way behind at 28%. However, Trump has made substantial headway, coming up from 16% in 2016, according to the Indiaspora-AAPI Data survey released on Tuesday.

The survey also asserted the increasing influence of the Indian American community’s 1.8 million registered voters — 56% of them reported being approached by Democrats and 48% by Republicans, compared to only 31% reached by any party in 2016.

As a community with the greatest earnings, Indian Americans are even “flexing their financial muscle” as the survey put it. A quarter of those polled told they had made donations to a candidate, political party or any other campaign body this year; $3 million informally, with double-digit ambitions.

The most of Indian Americans, 54%, recognized themselves Democrats as the second biggest group of 24% recognized themselves as Independents and only 16% called themselves Republican, compared to 45%, 35% and 19% respectively in 2016.

The most consequential shifts, or the beginning of it, were mirrored in the numbers for the race for the White House. While Indian Americans’ backing for Biden was irresistible at 66%, it was far inferior to the 77% support for Hillary Clinton, then-Democratic nominee, in 2016, and the harsh 84% that President Barack Obama got in the 2012 election.

Trump instead has risen up from 12% in 2016 to 28% and would go up to 30% if he and Biden divide up the 6% uncertain respondents’ equivalent to their present tallies. That should concern Democrats. “The Biden campaign has to be especially attentive” and must administer a strong outreach to the community, said Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. Ultimately, he added, these voters will “come home” to the Democratic Party due to their matters about other issues, especially Covid-19.

Neeraj Antani, a Republican member of the Ohio state legislature, credited Trump’s growing support among Indian Americans to the president’s exceed to the community, his visit to India in February and for standing with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and impartiality on matters like Citizenship Amendment Act and the repudiation of Article 370 on the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, as disputing to Biden’s opposition to those matters.

Biden campaign’s position on Article 370 and the CAA has certainly antagonized a section of Indian Americans and has caused talk that a Biden administration will be less friendly to India.

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