The year 2012 turned out to be one for the books when it came to citizens of Indian origin running for — and winning — elected offices in the US, and 2016 may prove to be an encore as many more Indian Americans entering the general election. Another prominent Indian American seeking a berth in the US Congress is Dr. Anil B. Kumar.
He is running against incumbent Dave Trott, and an Independent (and former Republican Congressperson) Kerry Bentivolio. Kumar understands the uphill battle he is facing to win the 11th District to beat Trott and Bentivolio in the elections to be held on Nov. 8th.
A urologist, Kumar, 62, I is a critical fight for a seat in the US House of Representatives, from the 11th Congressional District of Michigan, which is a largely suburban area just outside of Detroit. Kumar, a Democrat, has made it known that the crux of his platform will be a drive to create jobs in the communities around Detroit to help bolster the city’s economy, and find ways to make healthcare more affordable for the area’s low-income citizens.
Born in Jaipur but raised in Mumbai, Kumar graduated from the University of Mumbai with his medical degree before moving to England, and then to the US. He completed his residency at Wayne State University, located in Detroit. He has been practicing for 33 years, has at least eight practice locations in an around Rochester Hills, and roughly 25 professional affiliations. He is a head member of the Oakland Physicians Medical Center LLC and was formerly a board member of the Oakland County Medical Society.
For the last decade, Anil has served as president of a surgical center in Rochester Hills. In addition to serving his patients, Anil also manages a small business and teaches at Michigan State University. Anil is deeply involved with community activities and is – most importantly – a family man.
According to Dr. Kumar, he has given vitality to 11th District residents as an expert surgeon, small business owner, teacher, and community leader. His three decades of experience in the medical field have made him an expert on healthcare, which he will use to strengthen Medicare and the Affordable Care Act. Because the Kumar Surgical Center provides quality healthcare for patients of all socioeconomic backgrounds, Dr. Kumar understands the dynamics of running a small business that serves the community—not personal financial interests. Dr. Kumar is also a member of the clinical faculty at Michigan State University, and so he knows the importance of making college and community college affordable.
When asked why people should vote for him, Dr. Kumar said, “People should vote for me because, one, I am not an established politician and the persons that ere in office, including Congress, their favorability is less than 20%. And look at the last two or four years, especially for healthcare, especially for our seniors, especially for our patients who have deductibles of $10,000, $12,000. They have done nothing to change their lives. I want to come out of my very lucrative practice where I’m serving people, to do something [through] which I can make a change…The other reason they should vote for me is I have ideas that will work.”
According to him, his first priority is healthcare reform with full prescription drug coverage for seniors, capping deductibles and copays, and to repeal laws which prohibit the CMS from negotiating with pharmaceutical companies. Another area, he wants to focus on is to institute debt free education and skills training using a tax credit program, and early head start programs, increase funding for education, and deliver policies back into the hands of teachers instead of bureaucrats. His common sense measures to prevent gun violence by instituting strict background checks, and close the loopholes which have allowed for catastrophes where innocent lives have been lost.