Fords, NJ: The Asian American Republic Alliance (AARA) was formally launched with an inaugural dinner on September 30 at Royal Albert Palace in New Jersey. It highlighted the candidacy of GOP candidate for US Senate from New Jersey, Rik Mehta, an Indian American.
Rik Mehta won the GOP primary on July 7. He is a biotech entrepreneur, innovator, and healthcare policy expert, as well as an attorney and pharmacist, according to his election website. He has an uphill task running against the well-entrenched Democratic incumbent, Senator Cory Booker.
Among the distinguished guests attending were New Jersey State Senator Sam Thompson, MCRO Chair Lucille Panos, candidate for NJ’s 6th Congressional District, Christian Onuoha, Sayreville GOP Chair Arthur J. Rittenhouse Jr. and others.
The speakers included Rik Mehta, New Jersey GOP Chairman Doug Steinhardt, Middlesex County Chair Lucille Panos, Dr. Vishal Dhaduk who came in specially for the inaugural from Scranton PA, Padma Shri Dr. Sudhir Parikh and AARA Founder & Chairman Sridhar Chillara.
Mr Chillara emphasized the importance for Asian Americans to get more keenly involved in the political process. He asserted that the Republican more closely aligns with the traditional conservative values of Asian Americans. GOP, he pointed out, has actually been more receptive of Asian Americans – think of Indian Americans Nikki Haley and Bobby Jindal, who both rose to dizzying heights in party and positions of power. Soliciting the community’s support for Rik Mehta’s candidacy, he spoke about how they can make a difference in a state like New Jersey, tilting it away from being a solid Blue state.
Doug Steinhardt assured his support to all Republican candidates up and down the ballot with special emphasis on the Congressional seats they hope to flip this year in the state
Ms Panos talked of how she was once a Democrat and has now walked away once she realized what the party really stood for.
Dr Dhaduk gave a rousing speech on how Democrats are encouraging the creation of a welfare state and tearing down traditional American values such as hard work and self-reliance.
AARA national directors Praveen Thadkamalla, Pavan Kuchana, Krishna Vemuri, Piyush Patel and Hari Eppanapally were also present.
Jesal Amin and Brajesh Singh, who are respectively running to be mayors in East Brunswick and Piscataway, made their campaign pitches.
AARA NJ State President Ravi Kolla spoke about supporting all Republican candidates. Vote of thanks was given by AARA NJ State Director Dharmesh Patel.