In an interview to MSNBC, Democrat representative from Hawaii, Tulsi Gabbard put an end to speculations and said that she is ‘seriously’ considering to run for US Presidential elections in 2020.
Tulsi Gabbard in 2012 became first Hindu to enter the US Congress. She also became the first member of the Congress to take oath on Bhagavad Gita.
In October this year, reports hinted that Tulsi is contemplating for US Presidential elections of 2020. In the last few weeks, Gabbard has been talking to her party leaders and reaching out to Indian-Americans to get their feedback on the issue.
Tulsi Gabbard does not have direct links to India or any ancestry with Hinduism. It was her mother who embraced Hinduism, and later her father followed. She is seen to be taking a tough stand against Hinduphobia and propaganda against Hinduism.
In March last year, Tulsi had slammed CNN and host Reza Aslan of reinforcing stereotypes about Hindus and Hinduism through the series called Believer. She also claimed that the show virtually painted entire Hindu community as “cannibals”. She feared that the show will increase Hinduphobia and people’s misunderstanding about Hindus.
In the same interview to MSNBC, she criticised President Trumps’s policy of Middle East. On the issue of killing of Journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi Arabia in Turkey, she said that the USA strictly needs to deal with Saudi, as relations with them are ”counter-productive”. She said that supplying hundreds of billions of dollars to Saudi is directly responsible for slaughters going-on in Yemen’s civil war. Being a proponent of non-interventionist approach towards Middle-east, she said that regime-change in Saudi, Syria or Iran won’t further US’s interest.
She also had sparked controversy in 2017 by meeting Russian backed Syrian Dictator Bashar Assad and expressing scepticism over American claims of Assad using chemical weapons against own people.
Tulsi Gabbard was one the Democrats who had criticised US’s government move to deny a visa to the then Chief Minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi, and had labelled the move as a ”blunder”
Gabbard had met Prime Minister Modi after his historic speech in September 2014 at Madison Square. She had gifted Prime Minister, the same copy of Bhagavad Gita, she had taken oath on, in her first swearing-in ceremony.
Before confronting President Trump in US elections of 2020, she will have to defeat Democrat’s candidates first in the primary elections, which will begin in February 2020.
If she officially announces her candidature for primary elections, she would become the first Hindu to be running for the presidency in the USA. She also can become the youngest and first women to be elected as US President in 2020.
With this announcement, Tulsi has joined a long list of Democrats wishing to run for the presidency. In the 2016 elections, Hillary Clinton was the Democrat candidate who lost by a narrow margin to Donald Trump. It is not clear yet whether Clinton will run again this time, but reports indicate that she will not be in the race.