NEW YORK – Nearly three-quarters of the Indian American community plan to vote for former Vice President Joe Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris, according to a survey released Oct. 14.
According to the poll conducted by the 2020 Indian American Attitude Survey, 72 percent of registered Indian American voters plan to vote for Biden, 22 percent intend to vote for Trump, 3 percent will support a third-party candidate while 3 percent do not intend to vote at all.
The 2020 Indian American Attitudes Survey of 936 Indian American citizens was conducted by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Johns Hopkins University and the University of Pennsylvania in partnership with the polling firm YouGov between Sept. 1 and Sept. 20.
Ramesh Kapur, a Democratic Party fundraiser, told The New York Times, "We have arrived," and added, "Even though they are supposedly saving taxes, to the Indian American community, when you get the president of the United States saying to an elected official, 'Go home,' that scares the hell out of us."
According to The Times, the presence of Indian American vice presidential nominee Harris has had a galvanizing effect on a voting block that could help the former vice president in states like Florida, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
The survey further found that 45 percent of respondents indicated that Harris's selection made them more likely to vote in November. "Forty-five percent of respondents indicated that Harris's selection made them more likely to vote in November while just 10 percent indicated that it made them less likely to vote. Another 40 percent said it made no difference either way. In all, the Harris pick does seem to have galvanized a large section of the Indian American community with respect to turning out to vote," it said.
The data show that Indian Americans continue to be strongly attached to the Democratic Party, with little indication of a shift toward the Republican Party.
"In addition, Indian Americans view U.S.-India relations as a low priority issue in this electoral cycle, emphasizing instead nationally salient issues such as healthcare and the economy. As the political behavior of Indian Americans in the United States gains influence, this study provides an empirically robust and analytically nuanced picture of the diversity in attitudes of this important demographic," the study observed.
Reuters reported that there has been speculation the Indian American may not favor a potential Biden presidency, fearing he may be tougher on India on issues such as human rights and civil liberties that activists say are increasingly at risk under Modi.
Still, the survey showed little erosion in support for Biden, Reuters said.
“The big takeaway from these numbers is that there is scant evidence in the survey for the widespread defection of Democratic voters toward Trump,” said Milan Vaishnav from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Devesh Kapur from Johns Hopkins and Sumitra Badrinathan in their assessment, according to Reuters.
(With ANI reports)