Pritesh Gandhi, a pediatrician, has been endorsed by Indian American Impact Fund.
Indian American Pritesh Gandhi is running for the US House of Representatives from the 10th Congressional District of Texas.
An assistant professor of population health at Dell Medical School, Gandhi is vying for the Democratic party nomination. Two other candidates are also in the fray, Shannon Hutcheson and Mike Siegel, and the winner of the March 3, 2020, primary will take on the GOP incumbent Rep. Michael McCaul.
The 10th district, which lies between Houston and Austin, has been a reliably Republican seat. But in 2018, McCaul, who has been serving in the House since January 2005, faced a tough challenge form Siegel, winning by just 4 points.
Gandhi, a pediatrician and former Fulbright scholar, is focusing on healthcare reform and poverty reduction. He advocates paid sick leave and champions “Medicare for All.”
Gandhi’s community service has taken him across safety net clinics in New Orleans and now to People’s Community Clinic, an Austin-based nonprofit that provides health care services primarily to uninsured or underinsured patients.
“As early as I can remember, I have been inspired by the stories of people. After a lifetime of hearing families’ stories, I felt like now was the time to leverage the platform. I have to be their voice,” Gandhi told the Daily Texan in an interview.
The candidate is currently busy understanding and assessing the problems the district faces. As a progressive Democrat, he wants to focus on expanding Medicare and building a grassroots network of volunteers.
Gandhi is confident of winning the primary and defeating McCaul, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee.
“Yes, Mike ran last year and ran a good race… But I’ve been fighting for people in this district every waking moment over the last few years,” Gandhi reminds his voters.
Proposing an inclusive strategy, he sounds more confident and convinced. “Our strategy is to talk and listen to every single person in this district, and I think that’s a winning strategy. I believe in all of the stories that I have heard, and every waking moment of this campaign is going to be a reflection of those stories.”
Gandhi raised $161,000 in 27 days ending the first-quarter filing period, and started his second quarter with $157,000 cash on hand. “As people get to know my story, they’re going to see a lifetime of experience, that this isn’t something that, a seat opened up and I decided that now would be the time to run for it,” he told Houston Chronicle.
Gandhi insists that there is a “vacuum of basic human decency and leadership in the halls of Congress that needs to be filled… I’ve been doing this stuff for years, before I had any inclination to run. And that is because the stories and the experiences of the patients, their families and their communities are seared into my day-to-day thinking.”
As the son of immigrants, Gandhi has received the endorsement of the Indian American Impact Fund, a Federal PAC that invests in emerging, viable Indian American candidates to help them run, win, and lead in the elections.
Gandhi is one of the several Indian American Democrats running for Congress in the current election cycle.
In the neighboring 22nd district, former diplomat Sri Kulkarni is running for the second time. In 2018, he failed to unseat long-time GOP Rep. Pete Olson, who is retiring at the end of his current term.