Indian-Americans Raise Over $10 Mn For Clinton Campaign

Friday, 28 October 2016, 11:03 Hrs
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WASHINGTON: Indian-Americans are believed to have raised at least $10 million towards the election campaign to elect Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton as the next president of the United States.

Two Indian-Americans- philanthropist Frank Islam from Maryland and Shefali Razdan Duggal from California- alone have helped in raising a million dollar each for the presidential campaign of the former First Lady and secretary of state, campaign insiders told PTI.

Notably, Hillary's campaign does not give details of its major fundraisers and the amount of money raised by them.

It does have a group called 'Hillblazers', which has a list of contributors who have raised at least $100,000 for Hillary for America, the Hillary Victory Fund, and the Hillary Action Fund since the launch of this historic campaign on April 12, 2015.

Among those listed in the latest list of Hillblazers released by the Clinton Campaign are more than 30 Indian Americans, each of them raising a minimum of $100,000.

However, these Indian-Americans are reported to have raised much more than that, campaign insiders said.

For instance, Ajay and Vinita Bhutoria from San Francisco are said to have contributed more than $500,000 for the Hillary Campaign. Contributions from the community have poured in from across the country, including Chicago, Washington, New York and Virginia.

While there is no compilation of fund raising figures based on ethnicity, multiple sources said that they estimate the conservative amount of money raised by Indian-Americans for Clinton is at least $10 million. In fact, funds amassed by the community could touch up to USD 15 million, sources said.

It is also believed that Indian-Americans are only second to Israeli Americans, who are the highest fundraisers.

In addition to these recognised Hiillblazers, several thousand Indian-Americans have contributed to the Clinton Campaign through smaller fundraising events and online contributions.

On the contrary, the Trump Campaign lags way behind in terms of garnering support from the Indian-American community, according to informed sources. However, the Republican candidate has not completely run out of favour with several individuals and groups chipping in for his campaign.

A Chicago-based Shalabh Kumar claims to have raised more than $1 million to the Trump campaign, a claim that is refuted by OpenSecrets, a nonprofit body which compiles all the fund-raising figures.

In its latest report, OpenSecrets said Kumar in all has made $220,100 for the Republican National Committee in July. He also made a personal donation of $5,400 to Donald Trump Campaign the same day on July 1, 2016.

Except for Kumar, not many Indian-Americans have opened up their wallet for the Trump, who has made an unprecedented effort to reach out to the Indian-American community.

The Trump Campaign has refused to release the list of its bundlers.

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Source: PTI