A leading Democratic Party official and veteran Congressman has extended his support to an Indian-American candidate for the U.S. Congress as he gears up for the long haul to the Illinois Democratic primary March 16th, 2016.
Congressman Joseph Crowley, D- NY, vice chair of the Democratic Caucus in Congress, endorsed Raja Krishnamoorthi’s campaign for Congress from District 8 in Illinois. While Krishnamoorthi has the support of several other federal lawmakers, Crowley’s endorsement counts because of his position in the Democratic Caucus and his name recognition within the Indian-American community nationally.
“Through our work with the Indian-American community, I’ve been impressed by Raja’s tenacity and determination to get things done,” Rep. Joe Crowley told News India Times in an email response. “Raja is a proven leader and I look forward to working alongside him in Congress.”
Krishnamoorthi was also endorsed by Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Illinois, on Aug. 13, who said the candidate would best represent the interests of the middle class and small business in his district. District 8 covers parts of Cook, DuPage, Kane and Lake counties, which contain pockets of concentration of Indian-Americans.
“Congressman Crowley’s endorsement gives Raja exposure to a national Indian-American audience,” his campaign manager Justin Lamorte told News India Times. While the endorsement was made at an individual level by the Congressman and was not a party endorsement, his position in the party counts.
“Representative Crowley is an influential leader in the Party,” Lamorte noted. He said Crowley’s support was yet another sign of the strength and momentum of the campaign. Most recently, the campaign set up a Women for Raja Committee which has garnered some 100 members already, Lamorte said.
This is Krishnamoorthi’s second attempt at getting the Democratic Party endorsement which he lost in 2012 to party favorite Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran. Duckworth is running for the U.S. Senate, leaving the seat open. So far, Krishnamoorthi has one other aspiring Democrat, state Senator Michael Noland of Elgin, to contend with.
Noland’s campaign fundraising at this time however, is trailing Krishnamoorthi who reported net contributions of $621,000 to his campaign for the last Federal Election Commission filing quarter ending June 30. Other candidates might jump into the fray over the next few months however.
Congressmen Crowley is the 8th Members of Congress to support his campaign, the others being the Democratic contingent from Illinois including Reps. Jan Schakowsky, Luis Gutiérrez, Danny Davis, and Dan Lipinski, as well as Reps. Joaquin Castro of Texas and Jim Himes of Connecticut. Krishnamoorthi has a slew of Democratic Party officials at the local and state levels also supporting his bid.
Krishnamoorthi is former deputy treasurer of Illinois and currently President of Sivananthan Labs and Episolar, Inc., small businesses that sell products in the national security and renewable energy industries. He is a co-founder of InSPIRE, a non-profit providing training to Illinois students and veterans in solar technology. He served previously as vice chair of the Illinois Innovation Council. Krishnamoorthi lives in Schaumburg with his wife, Priya, and their two sons.