NEWS INDIA TIMES – that’s all you need to know News India Times January 11, 2019 4 Cover Story By Sujeet Rajan he year 2019 has a strong possibili- ty of a woman emerging as a viable Presidential or Vice-Presidential candidate in the United States, for the 2020 elections. It remains to be seen if a woman will indeed challenge the incumbent, President Donald Trump, for theWhite House. The path to that distinct possibility is not hard to see: the 116th Congress which was seated on January 3, 2018, has more than 100 women members - the most in history, headed by a woman, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, in the House of Representatives. Also, the first major candidate to pitchfork herself into the presidential election mix is a woman, Democrat Massachusetts Senator ElizabethWarren. The Indian American community, which for years and decades had its sights fixed on increasing the number of candi- dates in Congress – and has seen slow progress on that front as the number is stalled at four in the House, and one in the Senate - is suddenly hit with the prospect of one of their own actually becoming the most powerful politician on Earth. California Senator Kamala Harris, who is expected to announce her presidential bid soon, is one of the strongest Democrats in a burgeoning list of candidates for the nomination. The Indian American Harris, whose mother is from India, and father from theWest Indies, may pitch her candi- dacy on national TV, as early as next week. The Hill reported that Harris is making a return trip to “The Late Show,” and will sit down with Stephen Colbert on the CBS late-night show on January 10. It’s the same show where last month, after Colbert egged on Julián Castro, a former Housing and Urban Development secretary, about whether he would be running in the next presidential race, his twin brother, Rep. Joaquin Castro, fromTexas, replied, “I’ll speak on his behalf here; he’s going to run for president.” Apart from Harris, the Democrat Congresswoman from Hawaii, Tulsi Gabbard, the first practicing Hindu in Congress, is also expected to contest the presidential polls, in 2020. The progressive Gabbard is in the process of putting a team together for her initiative, and an announcement of her candidacy is expect- ed sometime this month. She has already been endorsed by a few conservative lean- ing Indian American groups, who are delighted by the prospect of a Hindu get- ting pole position in US elections. A terrific and exciting prospect for the Republicans is Nikki Haley, who stepped down as the Ambassador to the United Nations, on January 1, 2018. The former Governor of South Carolina, whose parents emigrated from Punjab in India, is consid- ered a top prospect to be the running mate for Trump in 2010, if he decides to dump the incumbent VP Mike Pence. The other, and more exciting possibility for the com- munity, is Haley running for President her- self, if Trump decides to recuse himself for a shot at a second-term. What Bobby Jindal, the former Republican Governor of Louisiana couldn’t achieve, perhaps Haley will. In the history of US elections, only two women have ever been nominated to run for the office of Vice President, the furthest they have achieved in a quest for theWhite House: Sarah Palin by the Republican party in 2008 and Geraldine Ferraro by the Democratic party in 1984. Here’s a brief look at how these three beloved women of the Indian American community stand at present, and what the mainstream and local press is saying about them: KAMALA HARRIS Harris, who recently went on a fact-find- ing trip to Afghanistan, to burnish her mili- tary and foreign relations credentials, is booking speeches in early primary states, reported the San Francisco Chronicle. CNN reported that a Harris nomination makes a lot of sense though. “The Democratic Party is becoming increasingly non-white and nominated women in record numbers in 2018. As Harris is the only women of color any- where near the top tier for the 2020 Democratic nomination, it shouldn't be surprising at all if she ends up winning,” it said. There is likely to be tremendous enthu- siasm for Harris. Women of color powered Hillary Clinton's sweep of the southeast in the 2016 primary. Last year, they were the base for Democrat Doug Jones's shocking victory in the Alabama special Senate elec- tion, noted CNN. Harris also appeals to many senior citi- zens, and disgruntled Republicans who have felt the repercussions of repeal of parts of the Affordable Care Act, and are struggling to find quality, inexpensive healthcare. An essay adapted by The NewYork Times from Harris’ forthcoming book, “The TruthsWe Hold: An American Journey,” has Harris writing of the death of her mother from colon cancer, in 2009. She writes about the merits of the Affordable Care Act. “Without the protections of the A.C.A., Americans with pre-existing conditions could be denied health insurance and insurance companies would once again be allowed to discriminate based on age and Year Of Women T Democrat Warren Takes Step To Challenge Trump In 2020 By Doina Chiacu -WASHINGTON U .S. Senator ElizabethWarren, a lib- eral firebrand who has taken on Wall Street and traded barbs with Donald Trump, on Monday became the most prominent Democrat to announce a challenge to the Republican president in 2020. Warren said she had formed an exploratory committee, which will allow her to begin raising money to compete in what is expected to be a crowded Democratic primary field before the November 2020 presidential election. She said on Twitter she would announce her decision on whether to run early in 2019. Warren, 69, a senator from Massachusetts since 2013, became one of Trump's fiercest critics during the 2016 presidential race and they have continued to exchange biting insults during his pres- idency. Trump mockingly refers to her as "Pocahontas" because of her claim to Native American ancestry. Warren has denounced Trump as an "insecure money grubber" with a plat- form of "racism, sexism and xenophobia," while Trump has described the former Harvard Law School professor as "goofy" and a "lowlife" with "a nasty mouth." On Monday, Warren released a video in which she outlined her vision of a path to opportunity for all Americans and charged that the U.S. middle class was under attack from corporate interests. She later elaborated on the theme in an exchange with reporters outside her Cambridge, Massachusetts, home. "America's middle class is getting hol- lowed out and opportunity for too many of our young people is shrinking," she said. "So I'm in this fight all the way. Right nowWashington works great for the wealthy and the well connected. It's just not working for anyone else." Trump, in a phone interview with Fox News, said he would love to run against Warren and again ridiculed her assertion of Native American ancestry. Asked if he thoughtWarren really believed she could defeat him, Trump said: "I don't know, you'd have to ask her psychiatrist." The Democratic presidential field could eventually include Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand, as well as former Vice President Joe Biden. Julian Castro, former President Barack Obama's housing secre- tary, formed an exploratory committee this month. Warren welcomed the "strong and growing group of Democrats" making arguments similar to those she is making, saying: "That's how we build a movement. We do it together." In searching for a candidate to run against Trump, Democrats will grapple with the tension between the party's establishment and liberal progressive wings that flared during the 2016 nomi- nating primaries between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent who ran under the Democratic banner. -R EUTERS U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) delivers a major policy speech on "Ending corruption in Washington" at the National Press Club, Washington, U.S., August 21, 2018. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo Continued On Page 5 Kamala Harris Kamala Harris, Tulsi Gabbard and Nikki Haley are names to reckon with as the race for the 2020 Presidential elections start in earnest