Indian-American candidate for Ohio Senate out-raises competitor by wide margin

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Ohio State Rep. Niraj Antani, top row center, on a Zoom call to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month May 21, 2020 (Photo: Twitter)

Ohio State Representative Niraj Antani, Republican from District 42, Miamisburg, has left his competitor way behind in campaign fundraising for his District 6 Senate seat this November, according to news reports.

The Dayton Daily News reported Antani brought in $93,000 in the latest reporting period. Compared to him, the Democratic Party Mark Fogel of Centerville raised less than $12,000.

The District 6 seat has been held by the GOP since 1985, and the party gave a ringing endorsement to Antani over his Republican contender in the primary, voting 64 percent in the Indian-American’s favor. Among the big names who have endorsed Antani are Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted.

Antani has taken a strong stand against the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. On June 2, when Rep. Steve King, a Republican, was defeated in Iowa’s District 4, he tweeted – “Wow. Steve King is GONE. Now that’s a concrete blow to racism right there. Great job, Iowa!”

On June 4, he urged constituents to join him in the statewide moment of silence to commemorate Floyd’s death.

Antani also indicated in one of his tweets that he has felt the sting of racism. When the Dayton Children’s Hospital declared it was not going to accept any monies from Greg McAfee, a local businessman and financial supporter after social media remarks that it considered “inappropriate and inconsistent” with the institution’s values, Antani tweeted June 5, ” Right move, @DaytonChildrens! Greg McAfee has said bigoted things about me in an email to a mutual contact. He is an overt racist and our entire community should reject him. No one should do business with him.”

State Rep. Antani is serving his third term in the Ohio House of Representatives.

Elected at age 23, now 27, he is one of the youngest currently serving members of the House, and the first Indian-American Republican. Antani serves as Vice Chairman of the Committee on Insurance, and as a member of the Committee on Health, Committee on Public Utilities, and Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee.

During the Romney for President campaign in 2012, Antani worked for the Ohio State Director & Senior Adviser to the campaign. He has also worked for U.S. Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in Washington, DC, as well as U.S. Congressman Mike Turner in his Dayton office.

According to his biography on the House of Representatives website, Antani was named to Forbes Magazine’s list of the top “30 Under 30” people in the United States for Law & Politics in 2015. As well, the conservative media organization Newsmax named him the 2nd most influential Republican in the nation under age 30. In addition, in 2013 he was named to the “Top 30 Conservatives Under Age 30 in the United States” list by Red Alert Politics.

Antani has received the Legislator of the Year Award by the AMVETS Department of Ohio for his work helping veterans, as well as the Friend of Community Colleges Award by the Ohio Association of Community College and the Distinguished Government Service Award by the Ohio Association of Career Colleges and Schools for his work for the betterment of higher education for the middle class. Antani received the 2018 “Making a Difference” award from the Miami Valley Down Syndrome Association for his work helping people with disabilities.

 

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