WASHINGTON: An Indian-American Republican businessman will run for the powerful office of Lieutenant Governor of Virginia and has launched a political action committee for it.
Puneet Ahluwalia, 55, in an e-mail to his supporters on Tuesday, announced: “I have taken the leap by launching the Proud American Political Action Committee to explore my run for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia.”
A Political Action Committee (PAC) is a tax-exempt organisation in the US that raises money privately to influence elections or legislation.
“I’m forming Proud American PAC because for those Virginians who believe, as I do, that America is the greatest nation in the world, but our political leaders are not living up to the promise of our great state,” said Ahluwalia, who was a member of the Trump Campaign’s Asia Advisory Committee in the 2016 presidential election campaign.
Delhi-born Ahluwalia migrated to the US in 1990. He serves as a consultant to businesses on client acquisition, marketing, and strategic affairs. His wife is from Pakistan and of Afghan heritage.
“As a person of colour, I sympathise with those who are frustrated and angry about race in this country, but not for the same reasons as the progressive politicians in Richmond,” Ahluwalia said, referring to Left-leaning groups.
“We need to launch a real discussion among all Virginians about race and the ways we can bridge the gap in opportunities, income, and education,” he said.
In a press statement, the Proud American PAC said it will work to elect candidates who are aligned with the core principles that everyone is created equal, with personal dignity, and constitutional rights the government should never be allowed to take away.
“I believe with all my heart that American free market capitalism is the greatest engine of economic prosperity ever devised. But our economy has left too many people behind,” he said.
“We can and we should do better by making it easier to start and fund small businesses in minority communities, encouraging greater job creation, organising private internships for every Virginia high school graduate, helping people climb the economic ladder, improving schools, and modernising our infrastructure,” Ahluwalia said.