Indian Americans now have a 5th member of the ‘Samosa Caucus’ on Capitol Hill

Candidate for Conress from Michigan’s 13th District, Shri Thanedar declaring his win November 8, 2022. Photo: Facebook @ShriForMI

Shri Thanedar, candidate for the U.S. Congress from District 13 in Michigan, won hands down garnering a whopping 71 percent and more of the vote with more than 90 percent of the precincts counted.

Thanedar, 68, a businessman, a Democrat, is the first Indian American to make it to Washington, D.C., from the greater-Detroit area of Michigan.

On his eponymous website Thanedar describes himself as an author, entrepreneur and jobs creator. He arrived in the U.S. in 1979 from Belgaum, to get his PhD in polymer chemistry from the University of Akron, Ohio, and followed it with a post-Doc from University of Michigan.

A graduate of the University of Bombay, thanadar worked in the private sector until 1990 when he purchased a small service company, Chemir, guiding it to become a $63 million company with more than 400 employees. His biography notes that he bought and sold 8 different businesses over the years.

Shri Thanedar with a supporter election night November 8, 2022.Photo: Facebook @ShriForMI

“We did it!” Thanedar declared the night of election day November 8, 2022. “With early returns showing us receiving 89.2% of the vote, I’m honored that voters chose me to be the next Representative in Congress for the 13th District!” he added.

Surrounded by well-wishers and supporters, Thanedar thanked his team while accepting his victory, as a number of leaders from the Black community praised him election night.

“My constituents can always lean on me” Thanedar says punning on the picture which shows a supporter leaning on his shoulder.

Currently, there are four Indian-Americans in Congress, Ro Khanna and Ami Bera from California, Pramila Jayapal from Washington state, and Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois, all Democrats.

On Nov. 8, Thanedar defeated Martell Bivings, Simone Coleman, Christopher Dardzinski and Lorrie Rutledge handily, and according to Ballotpedia, secured 72.3 percent of the vote for the open seat for which a majority of those trying to defeat him were Black. District 13’s population is 54 percent Black, and only 1.4 percent Asian, with 33.6 percent being White and 8 percent Hispanic, according to Ballotpedia.

Back on August 2, Thanedar defeated 8 fellow Democrats in the primary, indicating early on that he was heading for Capitol Hill in the heavily Democratic district.



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