Nikki Haley elected second NRI governor in America
The hall for the election night watch for the Republican candidate had been resonating with the rhythm of bhangra, when just before a quarter to 11 at night, the formal announcement came — Indian-American Nikki Haley had been elected the next governor of South Carolina.world Updated: Nov 04, 2010 00:14 IST
The hall for the election night watch for the Republican candidate had been resonating with the rhythm of bhangra, when just before a quarter to 11 at night, the formal announcement came — Indian-American Nikki Haley had been elected the next governor of South Carolina.
Haley is the first woman and first person from a minority group to be elected governor of the conservative southern state.
The daughter of immigrants from Punjab, Haley is also the second-ever Indian-American elected Governor of an American State, after Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.
Born Nimrata Randhawa, Haley acknowledged the influence of her parents from India as she was joined on stage by husband Michael and children, Leena and Nalin.
Haley won by nearly five percentage points over her Democratic opponent Vince Sheheen.
She made a reference to the fact during her victory speech as she pointed out that several persons would say her campaign had made history. “In some ways you can look at me and say, ‘Yes, we did’,” she said.
As the news of her victory was announced at the packed Columbia Convention Center, the troupe of Indian musicians started beating their dhols in celebration.
According to Columbia-based Dino Teppara, who consulted with Haley on fund-raising through the campaign, there was a “festive” mood in the ballroom where several major Republican politicians who had won elections on Tuesday night had also gathered The Indian-American community’s monetary support in the waning days of the campaign provided a much needed boost to her flagging campaign, that had been dogged by accusations over dodging taxes.
She will assume charge at the governor’s mansion in Columbia in January.
Kamala Harris wins AG poll
Endorsed by US President Barack Obama, Indian-American Kamala Harris on Wednesday won the election for Attorney General of California, soon after Indian origin Nikki Haley of Republican Party scripted history by winning the governorship of South Carolina.
Kamala will be the first woman to hold the office of Attorney General in California, elections for which were held on Tuesday.
Daughter of an Indian mother and African-American father, Harris is currently the San Francisco Attorney General. She would replace Democratic Jerry Brown who won the election for Governor of California on Tuesday.
Harris, who was the only Indian-American candidate to be publicly endorsed by Obama, defeated Steve Cooley of the Republican Party in a tough fight. pti