Jha Washington: Indian-American Congressman Ro Khanna, who represents the Silicon Valley in the US House of Representatives, has been named as Democratic Vice Chair of the Congressional India Caucus. The seat has been created for the first time since its formation in 1994.
Khanna, who was recently elected for a third consecutive term from the congressional district representing Silicon Valley, is being considered as a potential contender to fill the US Senate seat from California that will fall vacant in January after Kamala Harris is sworn in as the country's vice president. "I believe Ro Khanna would be an outstanding Democratic Vice Chair," Congressman Brad Sherman, Democratic Co-Chair of the Caucus, said in an email to his Congressional colleagues on Wednesday.
Born in Philadelphia in 1976, Khanna is the youngest of the four Indian-American lawmakers in US House of Representatives. The other three being Dr Ami Bera, 55, who is the senior-most member of the so called 'Samosa Caucus', Raja Krishnamoorthi, 47, and Pramila Jayapal, 55. Khanna's father is a chemical engineer who graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and the University of Michigan, and his mother is a former substitute school teacher.
Considered to be "dynamic" by his Congressional colleagues, Khanna is a strong supporter of India-US relationship. He previously served in the Obama Administration, as Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Department of Commerce under from August 8, 2009, to August 2011. First elected to the US Congress in 2016 by defeating incumbent Mike Honda, he has made a mark for himself within the Democratic Party, but also at the national stage on key issues ranging from foreign policy, national security, environment, commerce and manufacturing jobs.
He identifies himself as a progressive capitalist and was a national co-chair of Bernie Sanders's 2020 presidential campaign.