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How Will the U.S. Presidential Election Impact U.S - India Relations?
By Ekta K. Kalra
| Category: U.S. India Relations

The US and India have always had a relationship based on strategic partnerships both in good and adverse situations. The US-India relationship also has its fair share of challenges, differences, and issues that they grapple with. The question in the hearts and minds of many is how the upcoming US presidential election will affect US-India relation. Presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton for the Democrats and Donald Trump for the Republicans, and their perceptions of India sheds some light on the impact of the election on US-India relations.  While both candidates have said far less concerning India, Trump is on record for his controversial stand on the crackdown on H1B visas and immigration, which is an employment concern for the Indian workers and the economy as well. Even so, Trump also acknowledges the value of closely involving India in the implementation of US foreign policy in Asia, particularly in South Asia. As for Hillary Clinton, she equally enjoys popularity in India for her long-standing support to India and fighting terrorism in the India-Pakistani standoff.


Past negotiated trade deals have been highlighted and termed as ‘disadvantageous' for their negative influence on the prevailing decline of the middle class and strained economy in the US by the candidates. None of them has come out endorsing the deals. Traditionally, from the Democratic Party perspective, India stands a chance of losing because the Democrats have long been opposed to the movement of goods, capital, global trade and labor outsourcing from other nations. On the other hand, Republicans have been traditionally straightforward with regards to foreign trade policies.


So, with the US elections drawing closer by the day, are there any effects that the election will have on India? Surprisingly, not! Essentially, India’s economy is remarkably growing stronger and one of the world’s fastest growing economies with the potential of surpassing China, in the near future according to the World Bank. Equally important, the foundations of the US-India relationship are strengthened by India’s democracy and the renewed connections of an amicable nuclear power relationship.


It is either, the Republicans, Mr. Trump or the Democrats, Mrs. Clinton who will win the election. However, regardless of whomever wins, one thing is for sure, the US-India relations will be established on equal grounds since India’s economy is not only significant but also growing at a tremendous rate. It is worthy keeping in mind that, as a consumer, India spends fortunes on the US manufacturing sector and defense.  From a global perspective, the US elections effects on India are indirect, issue based and not broad based. Finally, to rebuild global balance and stability both the Republican and Democrats cannot afford to disregard India.


This backdrop provides compelling evidence that no matter the outcome of the 2016 U.S presidential election, there is high probability of continued support towards the US-India positive relations, characterized by the continuity and strengthening of the preeminent magnitude of trust, cooperation and collaboration between the two countries. Most importantly, successive US presidents have gone an extra mile to build constructive bilateral ties at both administrative and personal levels.


Women in India might breathe in new hope and hear stories of justice on Indian soil with the ruling of Hillary Clinton. This thought of smiles on eyes living with tears showers new joy on several human forms of Indian soil. Ties might dictate expectations which might bring in fruit of security for women. Hope smiles with joy filled eyes. There is light, though from a distant USA!

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this contest entry are those of the author and do not reflect the views, positions or policies of the U.S. Government