Indian-American businessman to challenge U.S. Sen. Cory Booker

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On April 24, Hirsh Vardhan Singh, an engineer and businessman in New Jersey, announced his run for the U.S. Senate with a promise to defeat incumbent Democratic Sen. Cory Booker.

Hirsh Vardhan Singh, a New Jersey businessman and engineer, announced his run for the U.S. Senate challenging incumbent Democratic Sen. Cory Booker. (Photo: Singh Facebook page)

Booker is among the 20-and-counting Democratic candidates for the 2020 Presidential race, and at this time, is not among the top fundraisers nor pulling impressive poll ratings from party faithful.

Singh, a strong supporter of President Donald Trump, told News India Times, he was determined to reach out the Indian-American community around the country.

“It is a big decision to run for the Senate, and its going to be hard work, but we will do it,” he said.

A conservative news outlet shorenewsnetwork.com had high praise for Singh, describing him him as a “millennial Indian American, engineer, and businessman” who is “a welcome departure from the stereotypical ‘stuffed suit” and signaled that he was “Cory Booker’s Worst Nightmare.”

Singh earlier ran for the U.S. House of Representatives, and lost in the Republican primaries in 2017, from New Jersey’s 2nd Congressional District. He did well in the primary ranking second in a field of five Republican contenders. He said that race taught him a lot about running a campaign. He is currently setting up his team and his election website is in the process of being developed.

Born in Atlantic City to Tribhuvan and Nandita Singh, Singh is  ‘Jersey Boy’ graduating from the New Jersey Institute of Technology with a degree in engineering. Growing up Singh visited India three to four times every year to see the extended family among whom he counts his grandfather, late Hukum Singh who represented the Kairana District in Uttar Pradesh for many years in the Lok Sabha, and died Feb. 3, 2018.

“It’s going to be an expensive race especially in this media market,” Singh said, “Just to get people to know my name could cost $10 million,” said the businessman. He describes himself as a conservative Republican and social liberal, and “strong” supporter of civil rights.

“I am not a supporter of equality of outcome, but a strong supporter of equality of opportunity,” he said. Indians came to this country and worked hard to get where they are as the highest educated and highest income earning ethnic group. “We did it through our blood, sweat, and tears – like my family – who faced many challenges and hoops, and that was because of the values we brought from India,” he said, “So we need to protect that equality of opportunity to make America succeed.”

In announcing his candidacy, Singh says, “Help me fix Jersey. Spread the news, we’re here to win. Today, I launch my campaign for U.S Senate. For the People of New Jersey. Let’s remove Cory Booker.”

According to Singh’s calculations for New Jersey, there are 277,000 Asian-American registered voters, of whom 150,000 are Indian-Americans. “But that’s just 40 percent of those who can vote,” Singh says. “We need to identify the remaining 60 percent so they can register — whether as Democrats, Republicans, or Independents — it would be very beneficial to our community.”

Singh also touched on foreign policy, especially the relationship between the U.S. and India, which he said should continue to be strengthened in a dynamic world situation and for the benefit of the global economy.

“You need someone who understands the Indian community here and in India, in the Senate,” he contended. “The only other U.S. Senator of Indian descent is Sen. Kamala Harris. What she brings to the Senate, I want to supplement.”

He puts developing and strengthening New Jersey’s infrastructure at the top of his agenda. New Jersey gives far more to the federal government than it gets back, through its port, roadways, and trains. It deserves more help to maintain and sustain these, he said.

“Having a U.S. Senator not try to resist the President, but one who will make getting infrastructure resources to New Jersey as a keystone of objectives, would be helpful,” Singh said.

On his website, Singh says, “We the People of New Jersey are suffering from political extremism and out-of-control egos,” Singh says on his campaign website. “Our representatives have forgotten who they serve. Our economic engine is choking and our infrastructure is crumbling. Together, we will rebuild our state,” the aspiring Indian-American candidate says.

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